A NINE-GOAL thriller was served up at Seel Park, with Dale once again ending up with nothing from a game that they deserved at least a point from.

Considering the appalling state of the pitch, both sides did well to produce such an entertaining encounter, where attackers were very much on top.

Despite the scoreline, the first half-hour was short on chances. Both sides missed one good opportunity each, player-manager Mark Molyneaux saving well from Mossley's Chris Downey, while Dale's Dean Cooper should have done better when clean through, but his attempted lob went straight at the goalkeeper.

It was against the run of play that Leon Mike opened the scoring for the home side, his turn and shot too good for Molyneaux.

At the other end, Stuart Tulloch should have levelled but shot straight at stopper Mathew Taylor, while another effort from the Dale winger deflected off Daniel Meadowcroft and rolled agonisingly wide.

Dale finally equalised on 40 minutes as Cooper lobbed the ball over Taylor.

But former Bacup player Rhodri Giggs had restored the home side's lead inside a minute.

Cooper levelled once more, hammering home from close range after Taylor could only parry Rob Jones' shot 10 minutes into the second half.

But Mossley were back in front three minutes later when Stephen Shiels was allowed a free header from a corner.

Brad Clegg levelled matters for a third time with a close range header.

Tulloch then edged Dale ahead in the 65th minute, his shot from the edge of the box making it four goals in the space of 10 minutes, and Ian Barker almost made it five but his shot was deflected wide as he cut in from the left.

The substitution of Jamie Baguley, who had an outstanding game on the left for Dale, changed the course of things as they lost their main outlet out of defence, and Mossley started to get on top in the closing stages.

Downey made it 4-4 with 15 minutes remaining, and Mike hammered the ball past Molyneaux at his near post to give the home side the lead with seven minutes to go.

Jones almost grabbed an injury time equaliser but his free kick was scrambled away by Taylor.