The trip to Sutton United`s Gander Green Lane was expected to be on the back of four straight home matches.
Instead, it comes on the back of two and a half weeks without a game due to the FA Trophy and weather enforced postponements. It also ensures that Mark Yates` thin but talented squad are now due to play five matches in two weeks, ending with a potentially season-defining clash against Halifax Town.
Impressively, The Moors have not lost ground during this period. We remain in the relegation zone, two points behind Barrow who have a game in hand. Perhaps crucially, we now have games in hand on Hartlepool United, three points and a goal ahead of us, and Halifax Town, five points ahead but still to play us.
The run of fixtures begins at a Sutton United side who have become arguably the story of the National League season. Not content with mid-table and an FA Cup 5th round clash with Arsenal, Paul Doswell`s men now sit second in the division with only cash-strapped Macclesfield Town leading them in the table.
The recent signings of Byron Harrison and Harry Beautyman show their intent to make it into the Football League despite complications arising over their 3G surface and their well-drilled outfit will prove another tough test for Yates` men.
Victory today would send a statement to those hovering above the drop zone – we are staying up.
Darren Carter talks up Moors` defensive record:
“One of the key reasons for our recent form has been our ability to keep the ball out of our net. Only five goals conceded in this calendar year proves that point. Credit to the gaffer and Tim in particular who sets us up and assigns us our jobs and roles within our shape. Everybody understands what is expected from them and together we go out there and execute it as a team.”
Sutton United Team News:
Paul Doswell is expected to have a full squad to choose from with the exception of the experienced Nicky Bailey. Sutton United have won their last three making only one change to the starting XI in that time – Harry Beautyman replacing Simon Walton for the victory over Woking.
Player to watch: Byron Harrison
Byron Harrison had endured a difficult Football League career prior to joining Barrow in the summer of 2016 yet despite injury curtailing his progress, the 30-year-old`s 1-in-2 strike rate saw Sutton United turn to him as they bid to secure promotion. Three goals in four matches later, he is very much the man of the moment.
Solihull Moors Team News:
Mark Yates will be without Opanin Edwards after the youngster returned to Bristol City this week. It`s likely that Ben Frempah or Romario Martin will join up with the squad for the trip to London.
Player to watch: Kyle Storer
The 0-0 draw with Wrexham was a horrible game, one led by grit more than quality. While the backline were brilliant, Kyle Storer`s refusal to be bullied in midfield spoke volumes. Having only played a handful of games, Storer has already assumed leadership status on the pitch.
Match Facts & Stats
Sutton United – 2nd
Overall record: Played 36; Won 19, Drawn 9, Lost 8; For 56, Against 39, GD 17; Points 66
Last six at home: Played 6; Won 3, Drawn 2, Lost 1; For 11, Against 6, GD 5; Points 11
Most starts: Jamie Butler – 34
Most goals: Tommy Wright – 11
Worst discipline: Jamie Collins and Craig Eastmond – 7 yellow cards
Solihull Moors – 21st
Overall record: Played 34; Won 9, Drawn 7, Lost 18; For 35, Against 49, GD -14; Points 34
Last six away: Played 6; Won 2, Drawn 1, Lost 3; For 5, Against 5, GD 0; Points 7
Most starts: Darren Carter – 34
Most goals: Oladapo Afolayan – 11
Worst discipline: Darren Carter – 5 yellow cards and 1 red card
Referee: Carl Brook
Location: East Sussex
National League matches officiated 17/18: 17
Yellow cards produced: 60
Red cards produced: 5
Penalties awarded: 5
Last time in charge of Solihull Moors: Leyton Orient 3-1 Solihull Moors – 08/08/2017
Assistant referees: James Vallance and Isaac Searle
Fourth official: James Hurst
Sutton United 1-1 Solihull Moors
Solihull Moors’ next six fixtures:
13/03/2018 – Gateshead (A) – NAL
17/03/2018 – Torquay United (H) – NAL
20/03/2018 – Bromley (H) – NAL
24/03/2018 – Halifax Town (A) – NAL
30/03/2018 – Aldershot Town (H) – NAL
02/04/2018 – Tranmere Rovers (A) – NAL