A STRONG second-half showing saw Macclesfield Town leapfrog fellow play-off chasers Bromley following a 2-0 win at the Moss Rose.
Paul Lewis opened the scoring four minutes after the break when converting Chris Holroyd’s cutback from close range.
Top scorer Kristian Dennis netted his 18th goal of the season late on as the Silkmen secured a fifth straight success at home in the league.
Dennis had earlier seen a penalty saved by Chris Kettings but it proved irrelevant as Macclesfield hung on to ensure the Mark Goldberg’s side went home empty-handed.
The Silkmen were sluggish out of the traps in truth, a far cry from the side that were two up at Woking after 25 minutes last week, as the Ravens shaded the early exchanges. Former Torquay man Lee Minshull smashed over with a wild swing of his left-boot in the first chance of the match.
An interesting sub-plot to this game was that it pitted the division’s top two scorers against each other. Bromley’s Moses Emmanuel led the way with 16 prior to kick-off and had an excellent chance to make it 17 on ten minutes. A high ball found him the wrong side of Macc’s defence but the excellent Shwan Jalal closed him down to save.
Macclesfield’s start could only be described as slugglish. Their only shot in the first half an hour came when David Fitzpatrick was fouled 20 yards from goal. He took the free-kick himself but the ball flew harmlessly over Chris Kettings’ goal.
Bromley did see more of the ball in the first half and their attacking intent was all geared towards Emmanuel but the Silkmen’s Neill Byrne had the measure of the Ravens number 18 over the course of the first period.
As the half was drawing to a close Macc had the most guilt-edged opportunity of the first 45 minutes, Paul Lewis marauded to the by-line and chipped for Dennis whose header from point-blank range was straight at Kettings when it looked easier to score.
John Askey presumably gave his side a kick up the backside during the interval and it had the desired effect as the Silkmen hit the front four minutes after the restart. Whitehead floated a cross to the back-post where Chris Holroyd pulled the ball back for Lewis to tap the Silkmen into the lead.
Three minutes later Dennis got beyond the Bromley defence and rolled for Whitaker who showed no composure as he blazed over the bar.
The Silkmen were then literally handed an magnificent chance to double their advantage on 55 minutes when Dennis’ cross hit the arm of Ben Chorley. Dennis, fresh from a hat-trick at the Kingfield Stadium last weekend, placed the ball on the spot but to the surprise of most of those inside the Moss Rose, his spot-kick was parried away by Kettings.
On 67 minutes Bromley came as possible to scoring without doing so. Emmanuel capitalised on a erroneous Dan Cowan header and bent a shot beyond Jalal which hit the inside of the post but rebounded away from goal.
With ten minutes to play Dennis made amends for his miss from 12 yards, Holroyd found space on the right-wing and picked out Dennis who slotted under Kettings to secure the points would be staying in Cheshire.
Dennis received a standing ovation as he left the field with five minutes to play. His replacement was Danny Rowe who floated in a dangerous ball but fellow substitute Jack Sampson missed the chance to add gloss to the scoreline.
Nevertheless Macclesfield will be thrilled that they’ve added Bromley’s name to the likes of Kidderminster, Gateshead, Alfreton and Altrincham who have all lost at the Moss Rose in recent weeks and they will travel to Wrexham next Saturday on the back of three consecutive wins with 12 goals netted in the process.
The Ravens are stalling now with three straight losses and have slipped below their hosts and down to 11th place in the National League standings ahead of next week’s trip to Guiseley.
Attempts: Macclesfield 12, Bromley 9
On target: Macclesfield 5, Bromley 2
Off target: Macclesfield 7, Bromley 7
Offsides: Macclesfield 0, Bromley 2
Macclesfield Town: Jalal, Cowan, Byrne, Diagne, Fitzpatrick, Turnbull (C), Whitaker, Lewis, Whitehead (Sampson ’69), Holroyd, Dennis (Rowe ’84).
Subs Not Used: Branagan, Halls, Pilkington
Bookings: Cowan, Lewis
Goals: Lewis 49, Dennis 80
Bromley: Kettings, Holland, Chorley, Prestedge (Joseph-Dubois ’78), Anderson, Swaine, Fuseini (Porter ’73), Cook, Minshull, Dennis (Rodgers ’87), Emmanuel.
Subs Not Used: Udoji, Tumwa
Referee: Ryan Johnson (Manchester)
By Jordan Davies at Moss Rose