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Hartlepool United 0 Solihull Moors 1 Attendance 2782
Battling Moors Climb Out of the Relegation Zone
PUBLISHED: 8th Apr 18

Moors travelled to the north east on Saturday to play the return league encounter with Hartlepool United. Back in October Solihull had succumbed to a last gasp sucker punch in injury time on Non-League day. “Pools” financial problems have been well aired in the press, but recent events seem to have stabilised this famous old club which has been in existence for 110 years. Our hosts have enjoyed a resurgence of form in recent weeks which has seen them pull away from the relegation zone but Bank Holiday’s 0 – 1 defeat at home to bottom club Guiseley was a stark reminder that in the National League nothing can be taken for granted.

Moors were at full strength and despite the cold rainy season having returned, the conditions at the Victoria ground were good if not a little slippery.

In the second minute Adi Yussuf found himself in a one on one with Scott Loach just left of the near post but the keeper palmed the low shot around for a corner. Liam Daly’s shot from the edge of the box was deflected over.

After a good start there was a wake-up call for Solihull as Hartlepool broke out of defence with pace and although they had the ball in the net it was rightly adjudged offside. In demand “Pools” Josh Hawkes hit a 25 yard screamer on eighteen minutes which whistled beyond the right hand post.

The hosts had another chance as the half hour mark approached but Cassidy’s pass to Woods saw Max O ‘Leary save well from close range. From this Solihull broke away but Jermaine Hylton ‘s effort from an angle which looked goal bound was brilliantly saved by Loach. Yussuf, benefitting from a defensive error, saw another good chance foiled.

“Pools” had another chance with ten minutes of the half remaining but Cassidy’s 18 yarder was poorly struck and wide. Darren Carter whipped in a trade mark free kick, but Fiacre Kelleher’s diving lunge did not make proper contact. Again, an exquisite curling corner from Moors’ skipper was knocked on by an unmarked Daly but Jamey Osborne’s subsequent effort was cleared.

A goal less first half failed to reflect the missed opportunities at both ends but was a platform for Moors to build on from the restart.

In almost a repeat situation Daly met a Carter corner and opted to head the ball across the goal mouth but there was nobody ready to capitalise on the gaping hole. Moors free kick on the hour was drilled straight at the Hartlepool wall and again, if it was needed, Hawkes tore through the Solihull defence and rattled the cross bar.

With Alex Reid and Omari Sterling-James on for Thomas and Osborne, Manager Yates was clearly looking for all three points with 15 minutes of the game remaining. Yussuf came off second best after another one on one with Loach but Sterling James was so unlucky when his thunderbolt from outside the area cannoned off the woodwork

With two minutes of normal time left, everything changed; a long Solihull throw was cleared for a corner – Carter opted to curl it to the near post where Yussuf turned the ball into the net.0 1.

Moors had the three points and just needed to survive the 5 added minutes -  Carline was on for Hylton to bolster the defence but then in the 93rd minute Liam Daly received his marching orders, apparently for dissent.

It did not spoil the after-match scenes of elation both on the pitch and in the away stand where some 70 fans were delirious. Manager Yates came over to applaud both the supporters and his team. Moors were out of the relegation zone for the first time this season. Barrow fall into the drop zone after losing 4 – 1 at Leyton Orient.

              

It puts us one point behind Woking and three lower than Maidstone United who we play on Tuesday night at the ATG Stadium KO 7.45.pm. Moors have a game in hand over both clubs

After Maidstone, Solihull welcome Guiseley to the Automated Technology Group Stadium next Saturday. They may be bottom of the league but are showing a return to winning ways under the guidance of Sean St Ledger who had a spell with Moors earlier this season. Every point is vital for Solihull in the run in to the end of the season where we have 5 games left – three at home, two away.

 

Seven One Zero        Supporters Man of the Match           Jermaine Hylton

 

O’Leary, Carter(c), Williams, Storer, Yussuf, Hylton (Carline), Thomas (Reid), Reckord, Daly, Kelleher, Osborne (Sterling-James).   Subs not used : Green (K)   Lait, 

 

Report from John Clothier                  Photos Courtesy of Tom King


    



 
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