WINSFORD United were punished for mistakes by City of Liverpool on an afternoon to forget.

The Purps had maximum points secured after an hour, and substitute Justin Pickering’s goal in added time provided the only cheer for the away team.

Blues matches their hosts early on, and Michael Koral prompted goalkeeper Karl Wills to make the first save.

Jack Hazlehurst’s header looped high at the other end, then James Rothwell’s attempt from distance was turned around an upright by the home team’s custodian.

John McGrath was wasteful when well-placed before City of Liverpool took the lead when Elliott Nevitt converted Hazlehurst’s low cross after Winsford failed to clear a corner.

At the other end, Sean Sherwood headed off-target after meeting Lee Duckworth’s free-kick.

A second goal arrived when Sherwood and Jason Fowles contrived to lose possession, and McGrath steered in Nevitt’s assist.

Blues might have fallen further behind, but custodian Matthew Green saved brilliantly to deny McGrath shortly afterwards.

Hazlehurst had a goal disallowed too, judged to be offside when meeting full-back Luke Denson’s cross.

Winsford sent on teenager Robbie Hatton for the second-half, and he fired high after Koral teed him up.

Sherwood’s saving header stopped a free-kick from creeping in, but captain Joe Camozzi settled the outcome in his side’s favour on 63 minutes.

He gratefully accepted a gift from Green, who missed an attempted clearance to leave him with an empty net.

A scramble might have yielded a fourth goal for Simon Burton’s men, only for a defender to block John Connolly’s first effort before he blasted a second against teammate Nevitt.

Blues notched a reply in the second minute of added time when Pickering met Koral’s cross at the far post after he had teased the ball out of Wills’ reach.

Purps | Wills (GK), Denson, Foy, Camozzi, Dalton, McVeigh, Hazlehurst (McEllin 70), Roberts, Nevitt (Davies 70), Connolly, McGrath (Watts 77) Subs not used Langos, Shacklock Goals Nevitt 26, McGrath 38, Camozzi 63

Winsford | Green (GK), Fowles, Skolorzynski, Sherwood, Lee Duckworth, Foster, Taylor (Pickering 63), Hopper (Hatton 46), Koral, Rothwell, Gardner (Steele 56) Subs not used Webb, Hudson Goal Pickering 90

Referee Daniel Locker

Attendance 241