Atherton Collieries came up against a Macclesfield side in frightening form on Tuesday night, as they fell to a 6-0 defeat at the Stadium.

Kane Drummond netted four of the hosts’ six goals, including one from the penalty spot, while John Rooney and Paul Dawson also got on the scoresheet.

Macclesfield went into this game off the back of an impressive 4-2 victory against National League North side Alfreton Town in the FA Trophy, and appeared to carry the confidence from that cup success back into their Northern Premier League Premier Division campaign.

The first warning shot whistled over the bar inside the opening minute, and was followed by a flurry of half-chances for Alex Bruce’s men, who were aiming to cement their position in the race for promotion.

The visitors largely held firm throughout the first-half, however, with a particular defensive highlight seeing Nico Defreitas-Hansen and Jordan Boon combine to somehow deny first Drummond, and then Alex Curran, the game’s opening goal.

The experienced Rooney would, though, break the deadlock 36 minutes in, with his effort from the edge of the area nestling into the bottom right corner.

And if the story of the first 45 had been the Silkmen failing to fully capitalise on their territorial dominance, the second half followed quite a different script, as everything the home side touched turned to gold.

A well-worked move eventually saw Drummond double the advantage with his first of the evening, and his second would soon follow, after full-back Tre Pemberton provided an inch-perfect cross.

It was hat-trick complete at 4-0, with the Macclesfield number eight cooling converting from 12 yards after referee Thomas Swift had awarded the spot-kick.

Midfielder Dawson then added the fifth with a thunderous driven effort, before Drummond struck once more to complete the scoring, turning the ball home from close range after a smart initial save by Defreitas-Hansen.

Attention for Atherton Collieries now turns to bouncing back quickly from midweek disappointment, as they return home to take on Ashton United at the Skuna Stadium on Saturday.