THERE was FA Cup action, the continuation of a couple of perfect starts and the big kick off in the North West Counties League on Saturday.

Check out the best of the non-league action below.


CHORLEY edged past fellow National League North opponents Gateshead in testing conditions to earn a welcome pay-cheque of £3,375 for reaching the FA Cup third qualifying round.

The Magpies were into their stride straight from the off, unlike their slow-starting visitors and two goals in the opening 25 minutes ultimately proved decisive.

Impressive new striker Harry Cardwell put Chorley ahead in the 19th minute. A well-worked corner routine saw a deeply-delivered kick reach Andy Halls unmarked beyond the far post and his return ball into the box was met with a towering header by Cardwell at close range which flew into the roof of the net. 

Cardwell was again involved in the second goal. Chasing a measured pass from Lewis Reilly into the penalty area, he was brought down by keeper James Montgomery and Reilly stepped up to convert the spot-kick with a firm low shot.

Gateshead belatedly raised their game but were unable to seriously test Matt Urwin before the break.  However, the Tynesiders were thrown a lifeline minutes after the restart when a short right-wing centre was sliced into his own net at the near post by Harvey Smith.

Although encouraged by the goal, Gateshead were unable to turn pressure into profit, failing to find the killer final pass to unlock a resolute Chorley defence.

Delighted Chorley boss Jamie Vermiglio said: “We were excellent from start to finish.

“It was a game which called for grit, determination and honest hard work and we showed all those qualities out there.”


RAMSBOTTOM United moved to the top of the Northern Premier League North West Division after making it three wins out of three thanks to a 3-0 victory over Pontefract.

At the Harry Williams Riverside Stadium, the Rams took control with two carbon copy goals from Danny O’Brien in the space of three minutes.

Both involved him cutting in from the left wing before unleashing thunderbolt shots from 20 metre-plus range. The first, in the 12th minute, was a fiercely dipping shot which went straight over the keeper’s head but firmly into the back of the net.

The second, three minutes later, was flatter in trajectory but hammered home inside the far post.

Pontefract showed more attacking intent after the break but failed to make good use of their possession - much of gifted to them by Ramsbottom who conceded a series of careless free-kicks.

However, in the event, it was to be another bit of magic from O’Brien that was to widen the gap between the two sides still further, this time the winger acting as provider.

An elusive run down the left ended with him squaring a ball across the face of goal for the well-placed Gonzales to tap in at the far post to make it 3-0 in the 65th minute.


Colne maintained their 100 per cent record with a hard fought 1-0 win at Ossett United. 

The game was never a classic as both sides battled the heavy weather conditions but the Reds stuck to their task and were rewarded by a Jamie Cooke goal midway through the second half to clinch the points.

Colne had to be alert in the first half as Ossett started strongly but the Reds had chances of their own.

First Mamadou Djabi won the ball in midfield and released Spencer Jordan but his shot was well saved by Ossett keeper Max Dearnley.

Late in the half, Billy Hasler-Cregg blasted over when well placed.

The breakthrough came in the 70th when Alex Dodd’s cross from the left wing found Webb-Foster in the home area and he laid the ball back for Cooke to blast a low 20-yard shot into the bottom corner of the net to give the Reds the lead and ultimately victory.


Clitheroe are fourth in the table and remain unbeaten after twice coming from behind to draw 2-2 with Trafford at Shawbridge.

Former Blues striker Max Haseldine put the visitors ahead in the sixth minute with Terry Cummings equalising on the half hour mark.

Haseldine grabbed a second in the 58th minute but a Conor Gaul spot kick two minutes later earned a share of the spoils.

Colne and Clitheroe are both in action tonight, Colne host Workington while the Blues go to Mossley.


AFC Darwen kicked off their North West Counties League First Division North campaign in style with a 7-3 victory over AFC Blackpool.

Ryan Steele bagged a hat-trick - which included two penalties - with Daniel Ashburner, Jamie Edwards, Sam Knowles and Leon Creech also on target.

The Salmoners went ahead in the fifth minute with Ashburner finding the back of the net, and Edwards doubling the lead in the 17th minute.

Steele netted his first penalty in the 22nd minute to make it 3-0 before the half ended with a late flurry of goals as Darwen went in leading 4-2.

Conah Bishop pulled one back for the Seasiders, Steele netted his second spot kick a minute before the break before John Jo Morris kept the visitors in it with a goal on the stroke of half time.

Sam Knowles restored Darwen’s three goal advantage on the hour mark only for Blackpool to immediately hit back through Adam Sumner.

But Kenny Langford’s side sealed victory with Steele completing his hat-trick and Creech grabbing a seventh with 15 minutes remaining.

Nelson’s game at Atherton LR on Saturday was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch while they played an hour of their game at Daisy Hill on Monday evening, the score 1-1, before that was halted by the weather.

Bacup’s clash with Garstang was postponed due to Covid restrictions.


In the Premier Division, Padiham led four times but had to settle for a 4-4 draw with Whitchurch Alport. Ryan McKenna put the Storks 1-0 up midway through the half only for Jud Ellis to equalise from the spot just before the break.

Ben Ashton and McKenna scored in the second half with Whitchurch replying on each occasion. McKenna completed his hat-trick but Joseph Howell levelled in injury time.

Barnoldswick’s game with Ashton Athletic was postponed due to Covid restrictions.