Byrne nets on his debut as the Blues ease relegation fears with Solihull victory

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Gainsborough Trinity eased their relegation fears with a storming 3-1 victory at home to Solihull Moors.

A debut goal from new defender Cliff Byrne, and second half strikes by Liam Davis and Simon Russell edged the Blues towards safety as the three sides in the drop zone failed to win.

Before the game, manager Steve Housham made four changes to the side beaten last time out at Leamington.

The big news was a debut for former Scunthorpe United player Byrne, coming into the side two days after signing for the club on a free.

The game began quickly, with both sides attackingly positively from the off.

Solihull had the first chance, from a corner, as centre half Liam Daly cannoned a header against the crossbar.

The ball was cleared and eventually made its way out to Dominic Roma on the right hand side.

Roma curled the ball into Stamp who forced an excellent save out of the visiting keeper – the ball looking certain to hit the back of the net but for a superb reflex save.

The Blues did not have to wait long to take the lead.

From the resulting Ciaran Toner corner, Byrne powered a header at goal and it was too hot to handle for Tony Breeden in the Solihull goal.

An early goal was just what the doctor ordered for Trinity as the players began to pass the ball with confidence on what was a tricky pitch at times.

This confidence formed into great one touch moves and Paul Beesley was unlucky not to extend the lead as he dinked the ball over from an exquisite Toner pass.

Minutes later and Beesley was unfortunate once more.

The former Harrogate man launched himself onto a Toner free-kick and prodded wide.

The missed opportunites then came Solihull’s way as dangerman Omar Bogle ran through the Trinity defence before Rory Watson came to the rescue and saved superbly down low.

The Blues were disappointed not to go further in front before the break and it was not long before the Moors pegged them back.

After a period which Trinity were camped in their own half, Bogle volleyed home a Jordan Gough cross.

From this point on, it looked to the neutral that the visitors would go on to snatch the win.

A free-kick in the middle of the Solihull half was the turning point.

As Solihull were setting up for ball into the box, Toner took the kick quickly to Russell who turned and threaded through Davis to smash the ball into the roof of the net.

The relief was there to be seen as manager Housham punched the air in celebration.

The goal stunned the away side and they vented their anger at the referee for allowing the free-kick to be taken with their backs turned.

The game was sealed late on as Russell coolly dispatched a penalty after Stamp was pushed over in the box.

There was time for Solihull to hit the bar for the second time in the match and Watson to make some more impressive saves to keep out Bogle and ex Aston Villa man Stefan Moore.

Manager Steve Housham was delighted with the performance.

He said: “It’s a massive three points.”

“We knew how important this game was what with being at home and that’s the performance we were looking for.”

“That’s the most chances we have created for quite a while.”

Housham was not surprised about the impact new signing Cliff Byrne had had on the club.

He said: “I think Cliff has come in at just the right time.”

“He’s a character, he can organise things and he will put his head where it hurts, like he did for the goal.”

“I want the lads to work hard and everyone could see today that those players put a shift in and I am delighted for the whole club.”

“I’d like to give them all man of the match after that performance.”

The Blues face two more home games next week as they host bottom club Hyde before welcoming Harrogate to the Martin and Co Arena.

Gainsborough Trinity: Watson, Roma (c), Lacey, Quinn, Byrne, Yates (Binns 90), Russell, Toner, Davis (Clayton 78), Beesley (Picton 90), Stamp. Subs (not used): Davie, Karkach.

Goalscorers: Byrne 8, Davis 64, Russell pen 84.

Solihull Moors: Breeden, Nottingham, Gough, Taundry, Daly, Elvins (Langdon 79), Story (Gueyes 86), Moore, Bogle, Beswick, English. Subs (not used): Byfield, Denny, Acton.

Goalscorers: Bogle 59.

Bookings: Daly.

Attendance: 323.

Referee: Mr P Davison.

Assistants: Mr A Dunne, Mr M Swift.