Lack lustre Latics continue to struggle

Oldham Athletic slumped to a disappointing home defeat to Macclesfield town on Saturday. Dino Maamria’s men have managed only one victory in his five league games in charge so far. The lack of fire power must be a massive concern for the manager as Latics continue to struggle in front of goal.

Following the double sending off at Mansfield in the last game, some changes were forced on the manager with Jamie Stott starting at centre half and new signing Chris McCann coming into the midfield.

Macclesfield started the game brightly and had much of the possession without causing too much of a goal threat, Kellehers header in the 21st minute being their first real chance. Latics struggled to get a foothold in the game and their first shot of any note was a Tom Hamer effort on the stroke of halftime bringing ironic cheers from the home supporters. 

It had been a low quality first half with both teams cancelling each other out but with Macclesfield dominating possession overall.

The second half saw an improvement – albeit a slight one – from Latics, no doubt in response to a rollicking from the manager after what had been a very flat performance in the first half from the hosts.

It was still a struggle for them to create clear cut chances however. Maouche flashed a shot across the face of goal in the 51st minute and Jonny Smith also tested the Macclesfield goalkeeper with a shot from the edge of the area.

Substitute Lewis McKinney provided some optimism for the future. The academy youngster came on in the 69th minute and didn’t look out of place. He went close three minutes later, arriving at the near post to meet a cross from Missilou but his effort was blocked by Vassell. 

The winner for Macclesfield came in the 86th minute after Mo Sylla had lunged into an ill-advised tackle, bringing down Gnahoua on the edge of the Latics penalty. Jak McCourt stepped up and smashed a fine strike to the side of the wall and halfway up the net giving La Paz no chance in the Oldham goal.

There was still time for Wheater to have a header cleared off the line but it was Macclesfield who took away all 3 points.

Latics could have few complaints following a poor home performance. Dino Maamria has a tough job on his hands getting the best out of a squad lacking in quality and certainly lacking a goal scorer.

The January transfer window can’t come quickly enough for him and he has already intimated that there will be several outgoings as he seeks to reduce the number of players in his squad while trying to improve the quality of it.

It remains to be seen where their position in the league will be by then, but at the moment they are in a perilous position and improvement is required urgently.


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