A seven goal extravaganser was played out before the crowd of 51 who turned out on a cool Bank Holiday weekend Saturday in the Lancashire town of Ashton In Makerfield.
This place may comically known by a few in the area as Ash Vegas but even when John Brownriggs men went in at half time 4-0 to the good,the odds of the away side getting anything after a first half which saw chances of a goal being as remote as the local bus companies in Newcastle and Sunderland getting booked for end of season tours through the city centres.
But half time speeches can bring about many things and Eccleshall boss Steve Lloyd will feel proud of the comeback but dissapointed of what could have been.
Ashton Town began the first half as a team on a mission and it didn’t take long to open the scoreline when Sean Robinson headed home a corner just six minutes in, Daniel Griffiths then doubled up on 21 minutes when his powerful shot from outside the area made it 2-0.
Eccleshall tried to hit back but the back four was standing firm with Peter Aidley getting a long range effort tipped over the bar by Town keeper Hoe Clements on 24m and Angelo Errico getting a shot just wide around the half hour mark
3-0 soon came up on the 42nd minute when Neil Weaver converted the work of Robinson who rounded the keeper and passed a couple of defenders to lay off to Weaver then just two minutes later Griffiths got his second to make it 4-0 before the half time oranges as he gave the ball a mighty whack from 30yds out which flew past the away side keeper.
After the break though a bollocking in the dressing room which must have been something out of the Mike Bassett and Sir Alex book of football management suddenly shook Eccleshall into life.
HT,Ashton Town 4 Eccleshall 0
Just a minute in on 46m the first wobble in the Town defence began to appear as James Gartside pulled one back for Eccleshall which gave them the key to unlocking the Ashton Town door that kept them at bay in the first forty five.
Town tired to restore the four goal advantage when Griffiths saw a shot parried a few minutes later
Eccleshall continued to persist and the second goal came on 69 minutes when Ryan Greene put his name on the scoresheet after he followed up the rebound from Clements who tried to punch the ball away.
The away sides best player by far in the second half Angelo Errico got his just rewards when his shot from outside the box flew past Ashton goalie Sean Dailey on 87m to bring the score to 4-3 and suddenly the great escape began to look just that little bit possible.
That was all it was to be at the end though,with three minutes left plus an extra three for time added on the Ashton Town defence mangled to hold on to collect the three points which looked in the bag at half time,the last minute corner even saw the goalie head up to try and do a Jimmy Glass.
Ashton Town can count themselves lucky here,a dominant first half seemed an age away in the second half as the away side shot out of the blocks much quicker than Usain Bolt did this week in Beijing.
Town though have made a solid start to the season and could be in the promotion hunt come April,Eccleshall know how to fight and are capable of better as they showed today.