Carlisle United 2 Macclesfield Town 1: Jerry Yates scored a dramatic late winner as Carlisle United came from behind to claim a fourth straight victory in 2018's final game.

Yates got a touch to a great Danny Grainger cross to clinch the points for John Sheridan's side in the 88th minute.

It was the in-form loan man's sixth goal in seven games for the Blues.

It came after Hallam Hope had cancelled out Scott Wilson's early opener.

The fourth consecutive win - achieved for the first time under Sheridan - took United up to eighth and just a point outside the play-off places.

The Cumbrians are also now only three points outside the top three.

They were made to work hard for the points in a game which was a stark contrast to their 6-0 Boxing Day annihilation of Oldham.

United had trailed from the second minute thanks to Wilson's strike for Sol Campbell's side.

The Macc frontman first deceived Anthony Gerrard with a clever turn before shooting across Adam Collin.

The Silkmen were worth their early lead as they made much of the early running, their movement and pace testing the Blues.

Tyrone Marsh almost set up a second for Wilson but Gary Liddle headed clear.

Grainger fired a 40-yard free-kick narrowly over before Jamie Devitt was denied by keeper Kieran O'Hara, Tom Parkes then drilling wide.

Yates was next to shoot wide for United after some good interplay with Devitt, Liddle then having a header saved.

At the other end, another good Liddle interception rescued the Blues before Wilson rifled just wide for the visitors.

United built more pressure in response and should have levelled on 35 minutes when Ashley Nadesan sent Devitt clean through, but O'Hara saved his attempt.

Finally, after Nadesan and Jack Sowerby had been denied, Hope struck with Carlisle's next attack, making space before rifling low past O'Hara.

They almost went behind again in first-half stoppage time when Koby Arthur's overhead kick struck Gerrard, but Collin reacted well to save.

The second half was often a toil as United struggled to create many serious chances.

Nadesan had an attempt cleared after Collin saved a close-range Arthur drive.

Tom Parkes made some vital interceptions while at the other end Devitt saw handball appeals waved away.

Hope shot over the bar as United looked for inspiration but it looked like the game was drifting to a draw, with Macclesfield still posing a threat on the break.

Finally, though, Grainger was fed on the left and as his teasing cross bounced, Yates met it and the ball rose into the top corner.

United boss Sheridan had named an unchanged side, with Mike Jones out of the squad due to an illness which also affected Devitt and Parkes, the manager said.

The Blues go to Morecambe on New Year's Day.

United: Collin, Liddle, Grainger, Gerrard, Parkes, Etuhu, Sowerby, Devitt (Campbell 77), Hope, Nadesan (Slater 90), Yates (Bennett 90). Not used: Gray, Miller, Gillesphey, McCarron.

Macclesfield: O'Hara, Cameron, Fitzpatrick, Pearson, Kelleher, Maycock, Marsh, Rose, Lloyd (Welch-Hayes 67), Arthur, Wilson. Not used: Idem, Hodgkiss, Lowe, Grimes, Vincenti.