Neither side could break the deadlock in this hard fought match at the Butchers Arms as the Bloods faced top of the table Atherton.
Both teams created chances in what was a cagey first forty five minutes.
Ben Hardcastle forced Chris Thompson into a save at his near post while a Rigby kick for the Bloods found an unmarked Sam Baird at the far post whose attempt hit the side netting
Atherton keeper Hartley saved with his feet from Gonzales before Oli Roberts for the visitors forced a finger tip save from Thompson onto the bar from a free kick.Hardcastle followed up to put the ball in the net but the linesman’s offside flag denied the goal for the visitors.
The second half was much the same,both defences denying opposition strikers a sniff at goal.
Droylsden’s Rigby was denied by the fingers of Hartley from a free kick just outside the area.
The game could have been decided at either end in the dying minutes, Caddick having to stretch too much for the ball having been put through while Atherton sub Josh Peet’s shot flew across the face of goal as the game entered added time.
Star player for the Bloods Steven Rigby
Two first half goals after being reduced to ten men clinched the points for Radcliffe but it was disappointing afternoon for a Bloods team looking to make it three wins in a row.
Droylsden made one change from the team that started at Colwyn Bay last week with Shaun Holden in at left back in place of the suspended Steven Rigby and they made the early running in the game
Holden seeing his attempt come back off the bar and Webb Foster forcing an excellent save from Martin while Domaine Rouse’s header was tipped over the bar from close range by the keeper.
Martin was again called into action superbly saving from Michael Brewster.
The game changed after
Radcliffe lost their captain Kingsley Williams,shown a straight red after bringing down Liam Caddick through on goal.
Elliot Rokka thru on goal for the visitors was denied by Thompson as the ten men increased the tempo before they took the lead on 37 minutes, former Blood Scott Metcalfe capitalising to shoot home after the Bloods defence failed to clear.
A minute before half time Radcliffe doubled their lead,catching Droylsden on the break after they had lost the ball with Ben Wharton converting after Rokka had broken down the right.
Bloods were forced into a change at half time, a head injury seeing Ollie Ford replacing Holden with Liam Caddick reverting to full back.
Radcliffe looked the more likely to score in the second half, Rokka and Wharton catching the home defence on the break only for the latter to shoot wide while a free header from Grogan came back off the bar.
Droylsden had their chances,Gonzales twice put through but failing to capitalise after hesitating for too long on the ball.
On 72 minutes their hopes of a comeback evaporated when they were reduced to ten men as skipper Michael Brewster was shown a second yellow within the space of ten minutes for a foul after he had been booked for dissent,
Bloods though continued to try and get back into the game, Domaine Rouse’s long range shot going inches wide while with the clock ticking, Liam Caddick was denied from close range by Martin
A big congratulations to Dylan Smith who has won the January player of the month courtesy of Bowland Breweries
The Bloods took all three points from North Wales despite having to play 85 minutes of the game with ten men.
Steven Rigby was shown a straight red by the referee who adjudged his tackle a foul on the edge of the area and the full back being the last man.
Droylsden had started the game well, Marsh forcing Rutter to save from his header in the opening minute and Reece Webb Foster testing the keeper again shortly before the sending off.
With Liam Caddick moved to left back, following the dismissal it was they who took the lead on nineteen minutes, Webb Foster’s first goal from the club, curling into the top corner from the edge of the area.
Falling behind revitalised the home team who were level five minutes later, a ball over the top catching the centre of defence out and Mullholland squeezing the ball past Thompson.
The Bloods keeper came to the rescue minutes later tipping a Thornton Free kick over the bar, and was twice more forced into action, saving well from Ashley Woods and again from close range to deny Barrigan just before the half time whistle.
The second half saw Shaun Holden taking up the left back position as Dave Pace shuffled the pack, taking Marsh off and moving Caddick back up the field with Caddick himself replaced shortly after by new signing Ryan Hopper.
The Bloods defence absorbed much of the home team’s pressure, Bay being forced into long range shots and when they did get through, Thompson was called into action saving well.
With just a quarter of an hour left, Droylsden took the lead, Gonzales glancing Hopper’s cross past Rutter into the far corner.
Again the Bloods defence absorbed Bay’s pressure and the home team’s only real chance came in the five minutes of added time, Thompson again saving well at close distance from Ethan Devine
Back to back wins for the Bloods who now have three consecutive home games to march up the table
Star man Chris Thompson
Midfielder Luke Daly has joined Evo Stik Premier high flyers South Shields this morning.
All at the club wish Luke all the best in his future career and thank him for all the memories
The final three fixtures to be arranged for the league season have been announced today.
The postponed game at Widnes will now be played on Monday 11th March, the abandoned home game with Glossop will be replayed on Tuesday 5th March and we will entertain Ramsbottom United at home on the 19th March, all games will kick off at 7.45
A big congratulations to striker Sefton Gonzales who has won the December Bowland beer award for player of the month