Date Time Competition Season Day Att
23/09/2023 3:00 pm NPL Premier Division 2023/2024 Sat 3012


Stafford Rangers’ early season troubles continued with defeat at Macclesfield, a result that saw them drop into the bottom four of the table.

There was no question of the effort put in against a side who will almost certainly be in contention for promotion next April, but once again, Rangers failed to score.

In fact, they failed to produce a serious shot on target and were forced to defend for most of the afternoon.

It was a task that they stuck to well for large parts with Jake Moult and Ethan Stewart giving little away at the heart of defence.

It wasn’t so comfortable for the two full backs as both Sam Bird and Joe Dunne picked up cautions inside the first 15 minutes and couldn’t afford to take any more risks.

The impressive Luke Duffy produced the first effort on goal, a shot that Joel Torrance gathered low down at his near post.

The Stafford keeper also kept out a 20 yard drive from Sam Heathcote – son of one time Stafford manager Graham and a one time unused sub for the Boro.

Torrance was called upon again on 24 minutes with a double save. He did well to block a shot from Alex Curran with his feet and was alert enough to deny John Rooney from the rebound.

Rooney missed out again just before the interval when he stabbed a shot wide at the near post.

The second half saw Macclesfield again asking the questions but it was an error in the Stafford defence that presented the home side with a golden opportunity on 48 minutes.

Moult and Stewart got in each other’s way as they attempted to clear their lines allowing Curran in but Stewart recovered to prevent the shot.

Neil Kengni fired across the face of the Stafford goal after a ball over the top of Dunne had sent him clear but Macclesfield finally broke the deadlock on 63 minutes when substitute Tom Peers scored after Duffy’s initial effort had hit the post. It was another avoidable goal which came about after Kaiman Anderson had been caught in possession in the right back position, though Stafford claimed that there had been a foul on their player.

Rangers made a double change with new signing Jack Massey (on loan from Accrington) one of the two players introduced. He showed some nice touches and glimpses of pace but was unable to produce the break his new side needed.

Only an excellent block from Torrance prevented Peers from adding a second after the Macclesfield sub had linked well with Curran.

Any lingering hopes Stafford had of rescuing a point were extinguished when Curran added a second in stoppage time after a good run from Kane Drummond.


Macclesfield: 1 Conor O’Keefe, 2 Tre Pemberton, 3 Brandon Lee, 4 Lewis Fensome, 5 Sam Heathcote, 6 Paul Dawson (14 Luke Murphy 73m), 7 Neil Kengni ( 12 Kane Drummond 80m), 8 Laurent Mendy, 9 Alex Curran, 10 John Rooney (16 Tom Peers 58m), 11 Luke Duffy. Unused Subs 15 Hayden Campbell, 17 Kevin Joshua

Stafford: 1 Joel Torrance, 2 Andy Burns, 3 Joe Dunne, 4 Jake Moult, 5 Ethan Stewart, 6 Simon Njaria (14 Jay Ford 67m), 7 Kaiman Anderson (16 Jack Massey 67m), 8 Aaron Braithwaite, 9 Nathan Blissett 10 Joe Willis, 11 Tyreece Onyeka (15 Ben Woods 87m). Unused Subs: 12 Andy Burns, 13 Jack Sandel

Referee: Zhahir Mustafa

Cautions: Rooney (Macclesfield), Bird, Dunne, Willis (Stafford)

Att: 3012

Report by Chris Elsley




Ground Stadium
London Road, Macclesfield, Cheshire, SK11 7SP

Macclesfield FC

1Conor O’Keefe
2Tre Pemberton
3Brandon Lee
4Lewis Fensome
5Sam Heathcote
6Paul Dawson 14
7Neil Kengni 12
8Laurent Mendy
9Alex Curran 90'
10John Rooney 16 26'
11Luke Duffy
12Kane Drummond 7
14Luke Murphy 6
15Hayden Campbell
16Tom Peers 10 63'
19Kevin Joshua

Stafford Rangers

1Joel Torrance
2Sam Bird 11'
3Joe Dunne 16'
4Jake Moult
5Ethan Stewart
6Simon Njaria
7Kaiman Anderson 16
8Aaron Braithwaite 14
9Nathan Blissett
10Joe Willis
11Tyreece Onyeka 15
12Andrew Burns
13Jack Sandel
14Jay Ford 8
15Ben Woods 11
16Jack Massey 7
Total Shots
Shots on Target
Yellow Cards
Red Cards

Macclesfield KO Stafford Rangers KO 11 16 26 57 63 67 68 73 80 87 90 FT

Past Meetings