On a day more suited to watching than participating, New Mills AFC’s season started with a good exercise against last season’s NWCFL Premier Division runners-up Maine Road.
Manager Roy Soule fielded a different side in each half to ensure that every member of the squad got some valuable playing time in the 1-1 draw.
The Millers thought they had taken the lead in the 19th minute when Shaun Roscoe’s spectacular direct free-kick from just inside Maine Road’s half sailed over the stranded goalkeeper and into the net. Unfortunately the referee somewhat harshly disallowed the goal, which appeared to penalise Roscoe’s intelligent quick-thinking.
It didn’t take long for New Mills to score a legitimate goal though when five minutes later, Rhys Nevins’ long-distance shot hit the underside of the bar and Daniel Douglas-Pringle beat Maine Road’s goalkeeper to the rebound.
The team that took to the field in the second half were perhaps caught napping as Rick Williams neatly turned his marker before beating Peter Collinge with a neat, precise finish.
Inevitably the weather conditions and more substitutions saw the game peter out a little in the latter stages but nonetheless both teams were pleased with the outcome.