So far, we have focused on first day fixtures where Macc have avoided defeat. Tonight we break that trend, by taking you back to August 1993…
After surviving relegation on the last day of the 1992/93 season, Macclesfield Town started life under Sammy McIlroy with a tricky opening fixture at Bath City.
Those of us who made the journey down to Twerton Park went there with a great deal of optimism – which had been catalysed in the main with the arrival of the former Manchester United midfielder.
Yet, the Romans were a very well equipped side in those days and Sammy’s new look team faced a real test as the 1993/4 season got underway.
Despite the initial optimism, we got beat, in fact no we didn’t get beat, we got absolutely hammered as the home side smashed five goals past stand-in ‘keeper Steve Sutton and what proved to be a superb consolation goal from Chris Sharratt didn’t make the long journey home any more bearable.
With hindsight, we can smile about this now as Macc went on to finish in a very respectable seventh position as well as lifting the Drinkwise Cup. But at the time we feared for our Conference survival for a second year – how wrong were we!
We spoke to Assistant Manager Gil Prescott about that “entertaining” day out in Bath as part of his Legends interview which will be published in it’s entirety soon.
Here is what he had to say –
Well I blame Sammy totally for that!
We had a good laugh about it actually, what happened was at the first training session we took, we only had four people that were First Team players because Wraggy had taken most of them to Stalybridge hadn’t he?
So Sammy said to me what the hell are we going to do?
I just said, well we can pick our own now as we are not left with people who we don’t really fancy.
We knew that it would take time to build, but in that first game I remember that we had ‘keeper problems because our first choice wasn’t fit, and we had two or three who couldn’t play so it was just one of those things.
But what made it worse was that I knew a few people at Bath, so that went down really well with them – I got a few phone calls after giving me a bit of stick put it that way!
I had no doubt that given time we would put it together though”.
Gil Prescott. Macclesfield Town Assistant Manager 1993
I think everyone will agree that we can now say that they did a little bit more than just “put it together” after this calamitous opening day defeat!
Macclesfield Town: Sutton, Shepherd, Bimson, Lillis, Alladyce (Sorvel), Dempsey, Leicester (Green), Wood, Alford, Roberts, Sharratt.
The full interview with Gil Prescott is coming to The Star Lane End very soon!