“IT rounds off the season that never was.”

For 1874 Northwich, the historic Macron Cup Final win allows them to finally close the book on a season that ended so cruelly.

Covid-19 denied them a promotion that looked nailed on in a 2019-20 season where they swept all before them only for the season to be null and voided.

A restructure has now allowed them to take their rightful place in the Northern Premier League, but becoming the first team to successfully defend the Macron Cup was a fitting way to round off that particular chapter.

“That’s really nice for everyone at the club. It rounds off the season that never was,” co-manager Wayne Goodison said.

“These lads were denied picking up a championship trophy, so for them to retain a trophy that no team has ever done – they created history there.”

This final may have lacked the dramatics of the 2019 clash with City of Liverpool that first put the trophy in their possession, but Greens more than made up for that in attacking panache.

Runcorn Town were thrashed 6-3 on their home ground as 1874 ruthlessly exploited their shortcomings in defence.

“I thought we were very, very good in possession,” Goodison said.

“We’re a little bit disappointed with the three we conceded but in possession, we looked very threatening and could – possibly should – have scored more goals.

“At the end of it all, though, I’ve got to congratulate the players. They’ve been outstanding since we came back for pre-season.

“We’ve had this as a real focus and they’ve worked extremely hard to get themselves very fit.

“It was another hot day and I know they were a man down for the last 20 minutes or so, but the effort and attitude to run around was really good.”

The plaudits will rightly go to the prolific Scott McGowan, whose first competitive game since rejoining the club saw him serve a reminder – if it was needed – as to what he does best.

Greens’ record goalscorer helped himself to a hat-trick, with Callam Gardner and Joe Woolley also on the scoresheet.

“I was talking to him before the game and told him he’d had 12 attempts on goal in the past three games with nine on target,” Goodison said of McGowan.

“As long as he kept doing that, he will score and he knows that.

“Scotty sometimes worries about not scoring but we know he always will. I’m delighted for him.

“I’m delighted for Callam with his goal as I thought he was outstanding today.”

With the league season still three weeks away, the challenge now is to harness the momentum gained through another period of friendlies.

While stressing there are improvements to be made, Goodison says he and fellow co-manager Paul Bowyer have seen signs that they will cause issues for teams at their new higher level.

“As a team, we could probably do better but we’ve got to put it into context – we’re still three weeks out from starting our season,” he said.

“We’ve got work to do but I think there’s signs there that we can cause teams problems.”