FOOTBALL: SOLIHULL Moors gave high-flying Barrow a run for their money but ultimately could not stop the Bluebirds setting a new club record of 15 games without defeat following Saturday’s 2-1 victory at Holker Street, reports John Clothier.
It looked as though promotion-chasing Barrow were on course for a comfortable victory after holding a 2-0 lead thanks to two goals in the space of three minutes by Moussa Diarra and Byron Harrison.
But Akwasi Asante got Moors back into the match with a neat finish and although they had chances to force an equaliser, Liam MacDonald fell to his first defeat as Moors manager.
Moors were without the services of the suspended Liam Daly, while Andy Brown did not make the four hour journey as he continues to recover from injury.
Barrow’s long ball tactics were noticeable early on and with just 15 minutes played the visitors had it all to do as they found themselves two goals down.
Danny Lewis produced an outstanding fingertip save to keep out Livesey’s effort early on but with 12 minutes on the clock the referee overlooked a foul on the Moors keeper and from a corner moments later he was beaten by a powerful Diarra header.
If that was not bad enough three minutes later Yates put in another excellent high cross beyond the Moors defence giving Harrison a simple head down for the second goal.
Diarra headed wide on 21 minutes as the hosts pushed for a third and Lewis got the better of a one-on-one with Bennett as it remained 2-0 at half-time.
It was a very different approach from the visitors after the break but not before Barrow failed to capitalise on three golden chances straight from the whistle.
Harrison put in a peach of a ball across the box for the incoming Williams who shot well wide under no pressure. Hughes then headed towards the top corner but it was deflected for a corner and from that Harrison headed onto the underside of the bar before the ball was eventually cleared.
It was now time for Moors to take the game to their hosts and with skilful one touch passing they opened up the bluebirds defence on 52 minutes when Darryl Knights sped down the left flank and found Asante on the edge of the box who curled the ball into the far corner of the net.
Almost immediately a poor clearance from Bennett fell again to the Moors marksman who hit a low drive through a melee of legs but keeper Dixon, unsighted until the last moment, made a brilliant save to preserve his team’s lead.
Barrow were now on the back foot but Hughes could have done better than screwing his shot across the goalmouth when a pass was on.
Shep Murombedzi was causing the home defence problems and went close on 58 minutes while on the hour mark Jamie Osborne beat two defenders before unleashing an unstoppable shot which crashed against the bar.
Hughes brought out another save from Lewis before Osborne forced a corner from which Jordan Fagbola struck wide and with a quarter-of-an-hour left Eddie Jones ‘s powerful cross needed all of Dixon’s agility as he punched out amidst a clutter of Moors attackers.
Substitute Harry White headed fractionally wide from Byrne’s free kick as time ebbed away whilst Omari Sterling James had the last piece of the action but Dixon was well placed to save.
Team: Lewis, Fagbola, Niate, Gough, Franklin, Murombedzi, Jones (White), Byrne, Osborne, Asante Knights (Sterling James) Subs not used Acton, Hayden, Dielna
Photos courtesy of David Chubb (Barrow AFC)