Lancashire and Cheshire Amateur League, Rhodes Cup First Round
Aldermere 1 Salford Victoria 9 (att 10)
Third division Aldermere had the best possible start against premier division Salford Victoria, scoring emphatically from the penalty spot after just three minutes.
It didn't take Salford long to equalise, but it was testament to the Aldermere players' hard work and commitment that it took until the opening minute of the second half before the visitors edged in front.
Aldermere had the occasional half chance in the second period, but they were mostly defending and further Salford goals were inevitable. The home side did well considering the gulf between the teams, but when they tired towards the end they were punished.
I last watched a game at Flixton Park 20 years ago, when long-gone Urmston FC played on a railed off pitch in the Manchester League. That pitch is still there, close to changing rooms that now display the signage of Old Stretfordians FC.
Old Stretfordians also had a home Rhodes Cup tie, so I knew I'd be guaranteed a new pitch to watch a game on, but the railed pitch was unused. Old Stretfordians, and their third team, used two of the three other open pitches in the park.
Facilities for spectators were limited to a park bench behind the goal at the Flixton Road end of the pitch, not that you'd expect any more at this level. But on an afternoon when I wanted to stay close to home it was an enjoyable cup tie.