Hopes were high as Bradford (Park Avenue) hosted Workington AFC in the Northern Premier League Premier Division at the Horsfall Stadium.

The game was the centrepiece of the club's annual beer festival at the ground, but the occasion fell flat as Avenue slid to a 2-1 defeat, in a performance manager Mark Bower called their "worst by a million miles this season".

Following last week’s impressive performances against Blyth Spartans in the FA Cup, Bower had hoped to see that transfer to the league.

But the deadlock was broken early into Saturday's clash by the visitors, as Steven Rigg's precise header arrowed past Avenue keeper George Sykes-Kenworthy into the top-left corner.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: George Sykes-Kenworthy was unable to stop Workington taking an early lead.George Sykes-Kenworthy was unable to stop Workington taking an early lead. (Image: John Rhodes.)

Workington nearly doubled their lead moments later, following an Avenue corner, as a lack of concentration gifted the visitors an opening. Luckily Bower's side, the chance was unable to test Sykes-Kenworthy.

As soon as the second half began, there was an early shout for a penalty for Avenue, but despite the strong claims, the referee brushed them off and awarded a corner instead.

Workington doubled their lead in the late stages of the second half, Dan Wordsworth rewarded the visitors with a great all-round performance by scoring to make the remaining minutes more comfortable.

Bower’s side didn’t give up as Brad Dockerty smashed an effort against the post, inches away from giving the hosts a glimmer of hope.

Will Longbottom did reduce the deficit just before full time, as after an impressive run, the forward’s strike from the edge of the box rolled into the bottom right corner, despite opposing keeper Jim Atkinson getting a hand to it.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Will Longbottom's goal came far too late to save Avenue.Will Longbottom's goal came far too late to save Avenue. (Image: John Rhodes.)

But that goal came too late for the hosts to spark a dramatic comeback, as they left the fixture empty-handed.

After the game, an unimpressed Bower said: “It’s the worst we’ve been all season by a million miles.

"Early on, it took us a little bit to get started after we'd played 120 minutes on Monday night.”

“We looked lethargic, leggy, didn’t pass the ball properly and had no urgency about us.

"We deserved what we got, gifted them two goals, and our quality in the final third just let us down.”