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9th Apr 17
Tranmere Rovers 9 Solihull Moors 0
Hammer Blow to Moors in Record Defeat

Tranmere Rovers 9 Solihull Moors 0 Attendance 5001 (inc 85 away)

 

On Saturday Moors travelled to second in the league Tranmere Rovers searching for points which would protect their position in the National League. They were without the injured Liam Daly, Shep Murombedzi and Calum Flanagan whilst Charles Regan Cook was still missing following the recent sending off. What unfolded was a nightmare defeat which put Solihull in the record book for all the wrong reasons and plunged the Club perilously near the relegation zone.

In the bright sunshine Moors made a relatively good start but only just survived a wake up call on 10 minutes when defensive confusion left Stockton in space on the edge of the box and his chip over Danny Lewis was denied by the cross bar. Lewis saved well from Norwood as Rovers started to gain momentum, whilst Moors had a good chance when keeper Davies and skipper McNulty seemed to collide but a wayward header landed the wrong side of the post of the open goal.

   

On 19 minutes Moors were completely undone as Tranmere broke from defence with wing back Ridehalgh hitting a perfect long ball down the left flank – Stockton passed it to Norwood as the big striker ran into the six yard box to produce a bullet header as the return was powerfully crossed. 1 - 0.

Stockton headed Vaughan’s cross over but got another chance on 26 minutes when Ridehalgh found him in oceans of space in the edge of the box and he blasted an unstoppable shot into the corner of the net. 2 – 0. 

When Jennings was fouled in the box a minute later it took all the brilliance of Lewis to deny Stockton his hat trick from the penalty spot as the Moors keeper guessed correctly and dived to his left as the ball sped towards the corner of the net.

Moors battled on but George Carline was off target with a 25 yarder and when Nortey got on the end of Sammon’s long free kick  he hit high and wide, Afolayan put in an overlong  cross having disposed of McNulty and Carline at last brought Davies into action  as he met Sammon’s free kick. Things were, nevertheless, about to get worse for Moors.

In the final minute of normal time before the break Stockton completed his hat trick as Ridehalgh drove a hard low ball across the box and the striker lost two defenders to side foot beyond the hapless Lewis 3 – 0.

   

It was the worst possible time to concede – a hammer blow to any real chance of mounting a   come back and if anything Tranmere were even more rampant as the second half got going.

Jennings fired in a low drive from well outside the box and it caught Lewis by surprise as it nestled into the back of the net (4 – 0) and with just 50 minutes played he doubled his tally when he met a decent corner from Hughes and headed home from close range. 5 – 0.

As if to add insult to injury, Stockton was substituted only to be replaced by leading goal scorer Andy Cook. Danny Lewis made  two great saves as Rovers pressurised  but on 70 minutes Cook was on the score sheet when he powerfully headed Vaughan’s cross from close range (6 - 0).

  

Tyrese Shade replaced Afolayan on 75 minutes just before Sammon’s free kick was denied by a good save from Davies. However the afternoon went from bad to worse on 84 minutes when a curling free kick from Ridehalgh found the net (7 -0) and just before added time Jennings got his hat trick with a solo effort finishing with a blast  from 18 yards (8 – 0)

Substitute Collins made it nine in added time and the rout was complete. It was Moors biggest ever defeat as they matched the worst score line in National League history. One felt for Danny Lewis who probably was Moors Man of the Match but on this occasion there would be no such accolade.

Moors slip to 18th in the league just three places and 3 points above the drop zone. Their goal difference stats are no longer a factor in the survival stakes. There are 4 games left this season and Solihull simply must turn this result around and increase their points tally if they wish to continue play at this level.

 

They host fellow strugglers York City at home on Good Friday – on respective recent performances, that is going to be a breath taking encounter. Kick off at the ATG Stadium is at 3.00 pm.

 

Lewis,  Franklin, Kettle, Sammons ©, Green, Maye, Afolayan (Shade), White (Brown) Sterling James (Jack Byrne), Carling, Nortey. Subs not Used; Sanusi, Baxter

 

 

Report from John Clothier                  Photos Courtesy of Tom King

 

 

 

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