Workington won’t have had many easier afternoons than this one as alarm bells began ringing loud once again at the New Manor Ground.
Ilkeston had a younger-than-usual side on display and it showed throughout as despite a good degree of effort they struggled to cope in all areas of the pitch, Workington able to ease to victory without getting into second gear.
Mark Shelton and particularly Anton Brown were missed in midfield, Luke Foster remains a tough absentee to replace at the back, while up front Malachi Lavelle-Moore again ploughed a lone furrow with no effective support until the late introduction of some more attack-minded substitutes.
Whatever the reasons are for the lack of overall strengthh on show, and indeed the lack of much to inspire fans at all in recent weeks since a good run of four straight wins came to a halt, many more spectacles like this one will hardly have the fans flooding back - just 277 were in attendance on this cold November day.
Workington are perennial challengers at the top end and could well fancy a crack at the play-offs again come April, their strength again too much for Ilkeston as it has been so often over the years when they’ve made the long trip south.
Rob Wilson had an early effort fly just wide in the second minute for the visitors, but five minutes later he would fare much better.
After the visitors had started the better, Wilson received the ball just outside the penalty area from a headed clearance and placed his shot beyond Ross Durrant and into the corner of the net.
Chances became few and far between after that, Wilson from distance and a Gari Rowntree miscue the best Workington had to offer while Ilkeston weren’t getting much joy in the final third at all.
The Robins’ first effort on goal was a shot by Haydn Goddard from 25 yards that dribbled helplessly wide of the target.
Good interplay between Lavelle-Moore, Brandon Clarke and Ben Morris nearly put the latter in on goal on 34 minutes but the Reds defence stood firm, half-time arriving with very little else to warm the cockles of the cold crowd.
It took just two minutes of the second-half for Workington to double their lead. Jaylon Bather got in a mess at the back and presented the ball to Scott Allison who controlled and fired home from ten yards.
Durrant got down well to save Jack Ryan’s header from a corner on 56, but as with the first-half, clear chances became non existent as Workington had little to worry about at the back and needn’t have broken sweat at the other end given their safe lead.
Lavelle-Moore had a good low drive tipped around the post by keeper Aaron Taylor as the clock ticked towards full-time, but that would be about as exciting as it got for the home fans, some of whom had long begun making their way home as the game fizzled out and the visitors took the points with them back up the M6.
Ilkeston: 1 Ross Durrant, 2 Danny Gordon, 3 Tom Gamblenn, 4 Ben Morris (Connor Walters 73), 5 Matt Baker (c), 6 Jaylon Bather, 7 Luis Rose, 8 Haydn Goddard, 9 Malachi Lavelle-Moore, 10 Keenan Meakin (Tevahn Tyrell 73), 11 Brandon Clarke (Dexter Atkinson 64)
Subs not used: Max Thornberry, Reid Owen
Workington: 1 Aaron Taylor, 2 Jacob Simpson, 3 Gari Rowntree, 4 Josh Calvert, 5 Sam Smith, 6 James Earl, 7 Elliot Newby (Nathan Waterston 83), 8 Rob Wilson, 9 Jack Ryan (Joe McGee 71), 10 Scott Allison, 11 Connor Tinnion (Kyle May 65)
Subs not used: Matthew Douglas, Robbie Hebson
Ref: Luke Watson
Star Robin: Malachi Lavelle-Moore