Lee Baker praises Garstang FC’s players for their professional performance

Jonny Hothersall was one of Garstang's goalscorers at Atherton LR last Saturday
Jonny Hothersall was one of Garstang's goalscorers at Atherton LR last Saturday

Garstang boss Lee Baker was a happy man after watching his side rout Atherton LR at the weekend.

Ric Coar’s hat-trick, along with further goals from Kieran O’Connor and Jonny Hothersall, gave the Riversiders a 5-0 win at the bottom club in the Hallmark Security League’s First Division North table.

It was their first victory in six league matches and came against an Atherton side beset by off-field difficulties.

The three points see Garstang ninth in the table ahead of their blank Saturday this weekend but Baker admitted some of the satisfaction was tempered by their hosts’ plight.

“It’s pleasing but, obviously, they are a club that’s struggling,” the Riversiders’ boss said.

“We spoke to the people there and they have massive financial worries, which is a real shame.

“It’s good that we got the win but I came away thanking my lucky stars that we aren’t in their position and it makes everyone appreciate what we have done in recent years.

“We have built the club from what was next to nothing and things are getting better on and off the pitch.”

The win was a welcome tonic for Baker after witnessing the Riversiders’ loss to AFC Blackpool a week earlier.

It wasn’t just the 1-0 defeat which irritated the manager but also the nature of it.

He said: “We told the lads on Saturday that the main thing was the AFC Blackpool fixture at home the previous week.

“I apologise to anyone who watched that because that was the worst performance I’ve been involved in at Garstang as a manager.

“I don’t know what it was; we created chances but we couldn’t pass the ball five yards to each other.

“Nothing about the performance was calm or composed so Saturday, playing the bottom team in the league, was a worry for me but, to be honest, the lads reacted.”