HAVING suffered a 4-2 midweek Lancashire Amateur League defeat against Oldham Hulmeians, a seriously depleted Prestwich side lost by the same scoreline at Hesketh Casuals on Saturday.

And it was the weekend defeat in Division One that rankled the most. In spite of missing several key players – including a keeper – Prestwich were looking in total control of the game when Hesketh got a soft opener when a speculative 20-yard shot squirmed under stand-in keeper Richard Steadman’s body.

Steadman went on to redeem himself with several smart blocks later in the game, but minutes later things went from bad to worse for Prestwich with a controversial penalty and a second goal for Hesketh for an alleged handball by Tom Walsh.

The goals were a massive blow as Prestwich had looked the better side, dominating possession in the middle areas and up to the edge of the Hesketh box, but with the front three of Sean Haslam, Anthony Cimanuka, and Mario Daniel operating individually rather than as a unit they weren’t creating much in the way of clear cut chances.

Buoyed by the goals Hesketh sailed into a 4-0 lead within 15 minutes of the second half.

Prestwich could easily have capitulated but the introduction of debutant David Prieto began to pay dividends with his constant movement and clever use of the ball playing just off front man Mario Daniel.

Prieto finished off a nice passing move between himself and Darren Buckley nipping in front of the keeper to sweep Buckley’s pull back from wide left into the net.

Prieto was again involved when his shot was deflected into the path of Anthony Cimanuka who chipped the keeper for 4-2.