DANNY Nardiello and Ryan Lowe will “devastate” teams in League Two if they can carry on their pre-season form, says manager David Flitcroft.
The seasoned strike pair combined well to bag a goal and an assist apiece in an entertaining 3-3 draw at home to local rivals Rochdale on Saturday.
For Nardiello, it was his sixth goal in four matches, following up his header in last Wednesday’s 1-1 draw with Blackburn Rovers, as well as a hat-trick against Spanish side CD Marino and a goal against Sheffield Wednesday.
Lowe’s clinical strike was his second goal since re-joining the club in the summer.
And although Flitcroft hopes to tighten up his defence ahead of Saturday’s big kick-off at home to Cheltenham after Dale substitute Joel Logan brought them level with a late double, it will be the promise of their “devastating” forward play that will dominate his thoughts in the run-up to the season opener.
“Eighty per cent of that you could call devastation, which is what we are trying to produce,” he said after very nearly getting one over on his former mentor, Rochdale manager Keith Hill.
“It was something we looked at when we brought Lowey in – could he and Nards play together – and I think we are proving they can do.
“If we can get the ball in their area of the pitch more often they are going to devastate teams.”
Nardiello forced Rochdale defender Ashley Eastham to bundle the ball into his own net in only the second minute, as the 31-year-old striker threatened to get to Lowe’s pull-back first.
Former Bolton Wanderers winger Rhys Bennett tapped in to level in the 10th minute before Nardiello put Bury back in front with a curler into the bottom corner.
Goalscorer then turned provider as Nardiello found Lowe in the box and the 35-year-old front man checked on to his left boot before placing a shot into the top corner.
Rochdale substitute Logan looped in a header just minutes after coming on before slotting in the rebound from a Michael Rose free kick in the 89th-minute.
It was a similar story for Bury against Blackburn last Wednesday, when Jordan Rhodes rescued an undeserved draw for the Championship side from the penalty spot two minutes from time.
It looked like Nardiello had secured a famous victory after nodding home Chris Hussey’s free-kick at the near post with 20-minutes remaining.
But Blackburn, who were reduced to 10-men on the stroke of half time after Lee Williamson was given a straight red card for a waist high tackle on Lowe, were given a lifeline when captain Jim McNulty was harshly adjudged to have bundled over Josh King in the box.