Bootle came away from Alder House with three points after Atherton Colls returned to league football after a couple of weekends spent in Cup competitions.
This wasn’t the most exciting of games in the first twenty minutes or so as both clubs struggled to get a real foothold on the pitch.
After an opening period which really lacked anything of any note the only goal of the game came from Bootle winger Joseph Peacock who knocked in from a corner on 26 minutes.
Colls then began to play the sort of football that helped them in their Division One title last year, Mark Battersby had a couple of chances but Bootle keeper and captain David Moran who was very vocal throughout whilst protecting the metal sticks only had to make a routine save apart from one which flew right at him but was able to knock it over for a corner.
The second half was far more lively than the first, Colls were throwing everything they could to grab an equalising goal while Bootle showed why they only got their goal from a set piece as the Atherton defence held the line
Unfortunately for Colls the finishing touch was just lacking in the final part, Bootle certainly won the battle of the midfield with Michael Ordish playing the sort of game that you would want from any midfielder as he covered more blades of grass than the Colls lawnmower does during the off season.
With the central of midfield proving hard to penetrate Colls had to remember what John Barnes said in his rap on World In Motion and “Go round the back”
Gas Preet who ended up playing at left back in the second half occasionally got the better of Bootle right back Vita Mbokele but he was on his A game for most of this.
Colls almost equalised right at the very end as Mark Battersby struck a free kick that Moran easily saved.
Bootle were probably the fortunate winners on the day in a game which had draw written all over it, Colls are much better than this but for this season just getting a good league position to build on for next season will be the best thing to do.
Wattyracing MOM, Michael Ordish, excellent midfielder who seemed in control of the midfield and kept calm when needed.
Next up will be the return of NH racing as we open up the 2015-16 season fully at Fontwell Park over Arc weekend on the first weekend in October