Winter Break No Help To Moors
Gander Green Lane
10.03.2018 // 15:00
Solihull Moors endured just a second league defeat of 2018 at title chasing Sutton United.
Despite a bright performance in which we created several chances, particularly in the first half, Tom Bolarinwa`s acrobatic effort was enough to secure victory for the hosts. Adi Yussuf`s red card with 15 minutes to go quashed our best chances of getting an unexpected result.
It had been two and a half weeks since the draw at home to Wrexham, Mark Yates kept faith with the same starting XI. Notably, Chris Lait took his place in the Solihull Moors squad for the first time since joining from Stourbridge in the summer - Yates is the fourth man in the dugout since he joined.
Neither side could muster a notable effort in the early exchanges with tensions rising following a couple of strong challenges early on.
The game was sparked into life on 14 minutes when Jamey Osborne`s long throw found its way to Jermaine Hylton whose snapshot from six yards out saw Jamie Butler save at the second attempt.
Butler was busy early on with those in front of him a little disjointed. He turned Jamey Osborne`s long range effort round the post after good work from Adi Yussuf and Jamie Reckord before managing to claw away Darren Carter`s dipping effort that bounced right in front him. Jermaine Hylton couldn`t fire the rebound in from a tight angle.
The hosts eventually got themselves into the game and earned a corner when Fiacre Kelleher deflected a shot wide. From the resulting set-piece, Kenny Davis was left free on the edge of the area and managed to stab the ball towards the back post where Tom Bolarinwa waited. The winger acrobatically looped the ball towards the top corner.
The Moors tried to get back on the front foot in the second half but neither Kwame Thomas or Darren Carter could keep their efforts down. At the other end, substitute Simon Walton caught a half volley sweetly but O`Leary was down sharply to push the ball wide.
Alex Reid was given a chance to follow up his Dover Athletic heroics but it was Bolarinwa and then Walton who had efforts at goal, neither really testing O`Leary.
Our chances of getting a result were further dampened when Adi Yussuf was sent off for being deemed to have deliberately handled the ball. Despite this, Reid found Kyle Storer whose turn and shot were impressive but Butler was again equal to the effort.
Yates` final gambles were to bring on George Carline and Chris Lait, making his Moors debut, but neither could help the side get an unlikely equaliser.
Despite losing 1-0 away from home for the fifth time during Yates` reign, it feels as if we are continuing to make progress.
Fine margins are key at this stage of the season and if we can force them our way during the next four games, we give ourselves an even better chance at do what seemed impossible a few months ago - survive.
Starting XI: O`Leary; Williams, Daly, Kelleher, Reckord (Lait); Osborne, Storer, Carter (Carline); Yussuf, Hylton (Reid), Thomas.