Solihull Moors 2-1 Oldham Athletic: Moors End Eight Game Unbeaten Run
New Balance National League ball during the National League fixture between York City and Oldham Athletic at the LNER Community Stadium, York on Monday 29th August 2022.. (Photo by Eddie Garvey/MI News/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Solihull Moors have ended an eight match winless run, as they beat struggling Oldham Athletic by two goals to one, on Saturday afternoon. 

Joe Sbarra gave the home side the lead, before turning provider minutes later as Andrew Dallas struck home to double Solihull’s lead. 
 

Oldham Athletic did pull a goal back late on, through John Rooney but it was a case of too little too late for the club, as they extended their five match winless run to six games. 
 

Victory for the home side, sees them stay seventh in the National League table, whilst the visitors drop to 23rd in the table, four points from safety. 
 

  • Team News

Solihull Moors

Goalkeeper Ryan Boot was handed his 200th club appearance in goal, whilst new signing Bartosz Cybulski was named on the bench. The Polish forward joined the club on loan from Derby County yesterday. 

Duo Callum Howe and Callum Maycock remained sidelined with injury, whilst manager Neal Ardley missed the match, due to personal reasons. 

Starting XI: Ryan Boot (GK) ; James Clarke, Alex Gudger, Joey Jones, Ben Coker ; Kyle Storer, Jamey Osborne ; Ryan Barnett, Joe Sbarra, Andrew Dallas ; Josh Kelly (4-2-3-1) 

 

Oldham Athletic 

As for The Lactics, they handed a start to former Moors loanee Alex Reid, who scored seven times on loan for the club this season, before his deal was cancelled.  
 

Speaking of milestones, midfielder Dan Gardner was handed his 300th career appearance, whilst former Solihull Moors loanee Lois Maynard started on the bench.  

Starting XI: Magnus Norman (GK) ; Liam Hogan, Peter Clarke, Ellis Chapman ; Mark Kitching, Dan Gardner, Nathan Sheron, Hallam Hope ; Ben Tollitt, Alex Reid, Sydie Peck (3-4-3) 

 

  • Story Of The Match

With two sides desperate to end their winless runs, it was always likely to be a game full of chances even if the scoring was kept to a minimal. 

The games opening opportunity occurred after just three minutes, when Oldham’s Sydie Peck, found space from distance and tried his luck. However, his effort was comfortable for goalkeeper Ryan Boot. 

The home sides first opportunity arrived after ten minutes, when forward Josh Kelly picked up the ball on the right-hand side, beat his man, before seeing his effort saved well by the goalkeeper. 

The chances continued to fall Solihull’s way, with full-back James Clarke seeing an effort saved, before Kelly headed a Ben Coker free-kick, wide of the post.  

In truth, the first-half went exactly the way a spectator would assume, with the higher positioned side, dominating possession and having the better of the chances. 

This was until the 37th minute, when Oldham Athletic began having chances of their own. Firstly, Alex Reid should have done much better when he found himself in a brilliant position, but he failed to score against his former club. 

Meanwhile, Ben Tollitt struck the post for the visitors, as the first-half came to a close, with the two sides unable to find the back of the net. 

Half Time: Solihull Moors 0-0 Oldham Athletic 

However, it took the home side, less than a minute to grab the games opening goal. Experienced defender Peter Clarke made a huge mistake, which allowed Andrew Dallas to race through and pick out Joe Sbarra who smashed the ball into the back of the net. 

Unfortunately, when it rains it pours as far as Oldham Athletic are concerned, after they found themselves 2-0 behind with minutes of the first goal. This time, Sbarra turned provider after an excellent counter-attack, and he found Dallas who slotted past Magnus Norman to kill the game. 

Within four minutes, Sbarra almost made it three, but this time he was denied by a smart stop from Norman. Winger Ryan Barnett was next to try his luck, but his effort was tipped over the bar, as the pressure continued to build. 

Oldham Athletic’s best chance of the game, arrived after 73 minutes, when Hallam Hope was played clean-through on goal, but he was denied brilliantly by Boot. 

Full-back Coker almost teed up Dallas for an opportunity for Solihull Moors, but the Scottish forward was inches away from sliding the ball home. 

Oldham did eventually pull a goal back late on, when John Rooney’s corner went straight into the back of the net. There is a debate on whether P. Clarke got a touch for the visitors, but it wouldn’t have made any difference on the final outcome. 

Mark Kitching also missed a golden opportunity with the final chance of the game, as Oldham’s misery continued. 
 

Full Time: Solihull Moors 2-1 Oldham Athletic 

  • Man Of The Match

Despite Joe Sbarra grabbing a goal and assist for the club, full-back James Clarke was definitely one of the games standout players. In terms of his defensive contribution, he was excellent throughout the game, constantly keeping his opponent quiet throughout the match. 
At the other end, he created a handful of opportunities and was unlucky not to find the back of the net himself. 

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