MACCLESFIELD Town ended a run of four consecutive defeats in a scrappy encounter against fourth-placed Wrexham at Moss Rose on a chilly Saturday afternoon.
It was a game of few chances but it was the visitors who had the best chance of the first half when Kayden Jackson burst clear of the last man but could only roll his effort against the post.
In the second half Wrexham thought they were ahead as Macclesfield somehow managed to survive a frenetic goalmouth scramble before Kristian Dennis nearly sent the Moss Rose into raptures with a thunderous effort at the other end.
The Welsh side looked to set to win it when Kayden Jackson was once again put through one on one, but he was denied well by goalkeeper Shwan Jalal.
It was a bitterly cold afternoon in Macclesfield as John Askey’s side went into the game looking to arrest a run of four straight defeats.
Gary Mills’ Wrexham side meanwhile were looking for a fourth straight win in order to take their unbeaten run to seven games.
From the outset it appeared this was a game that would be dominated in the middle of the park with neither side appearing able to craft meaningful chances in the final third.
Wrexham were the side who started brighter and wasted a good opportunity on 15 minutes when Sean Newton’s edge of the box freekick was blazed over after striker Jackson was deliberately felled.
That was a let-off for Town and they nearly responded when left-back David Fitzpatrick crossed on the left byline for Jack Sampson – the striker, however, could only poke wide of the near post.
Just before the half hour mark those in attendance saw the best chance of the afternoon as Jackson managed to wriggle free of the last man to go one-on-one with Jalal.
His effort, despite beating the Macclesfield goalkeeper, crashed against the post to prevent the forward from netting a third goal in two games.
The 1,000 strong Wrexham away support began to celebrate as they thought it was in – much to the delight of the home supporters who taunted vociferously thereafter.
At half-time both managers would have been relatively satisfied with a clean sheet but concerned at the dearth of well crafted opportunities on goal.
After a first half devoid of any noteworthy moments, the second half started frantically with Macclesfield close to taking the lead inside a minute through Dennis.
The forward was close to adding to his 21 league goals so far this term after a well worked move allowed him to fizz an outside of the boot effort straight at former Macc goalkeeper Rhys Taylor from the edge of the area.
Five minutes later there was chaos in the Macclesfield box – in front of the travelling Wrexham fans – after a high ball was not dealt with a goalmouth scramble ensued.
Jackson, Connor Jennings and Mark Beck all tried desperately to stab it home but somehow the home defence stood firm and maintained the clean sheet.
The game fizzled out thereafter until stoppage time where Macclesfield’s high line saw them exposed after a high, looping ball sent Jackson through once more, only for Jalal to make himself big as he rushed out.
A goalless draw brought an end to Macclesfield’s dismal losing streak and also stretched Wrexham’s unbeaten run to seven games but both managers will be disappointed overall.
It was a game that offered very little with over 2,400 turning out in the winter frost and all but signalled the end to the hosts’ slim chances of making the play-off places come April 30.
Macclesfield Town (4-1-4-1): Jalal (GK); Fitzpatrick, Byrne (78’ Diagne), Pilkington, Halls; Turnbull; Sampson (82’ Phillips), Whitaker, Whitehead (86’ Styche), Holroyd; Dennis.
Subs not used: Branagan, Sutherland.
Wrexham AFC (4-3-3): Taylor (GK); Newton, M Smith, Hudson, Carrington; Heslop, Evans, Fowler (81’ J Smith); Jennings, Beck (78’ York), Jackson.
Subs not used: Moke, O’Reilly, Briscoe.
Referee: Ollie Yates (Staffordshire)
Attendance: 2406 (1089 visitors)
By Nathan Salt at Moss Rose