Solihull Moors ended the Avenue’s five match unbeaten run in the Blue Square Bet North, defeating Bradford (Park Avenue) at Damson Park.
John Deacey’s side created plenty of chances, however, their inability to convert their chances cost the Avenue.
Within the first three minutes, the Avenue’s midfielder Richard Marshall was looking to add to his tally of long range goals. However, Bradford’s number four could only curl his right footed shot wide of the far post from 20 yards.
Furthermore, the Avenue continued to trouble the Moors stopper Jasbir Singh. Following a flick down from Matty James, Bradford’s winger Paul Walker struck a half volley from the edge of the box, but, Singh produced a fine diving save.
A minute later, Bradford had their third effort on goal. After neat passing play down the Avenue’s left wing, Richard Marshall laid the ball into the feet of Matty James, who failed to strike the ball with any venom to make Singh worry.
However, the home side made the most of the Avenue’s failure to convert their chances. A free kick awarded against Martin Drury was swung into the box by Dior Angus, and defender Tom Kemp got in front of his marker to head the ball past Tim Deasy from ten yards.
Then, the Moors nearly doubled their advantage. A teasing cross by Dominic Langdon was sliced by the Avenue captain James Knowles, and with Deasy rooted to the spot, the ball spun off the crossbar and out for a corner, to the relief of the visitors.
Despite being behind on the scoreboard, the Avenue were always looking to create opportunities. After two diagonal passes from Martin Drury, and secondly, debutant Simon Garner, Paul Walker controlled the ball and fizzed a low cross into the box, only for Danny Spencer to block Matty James from close range.
Shortly after the Moors goalscorer Tom Kemp being substituted, the home side caught the Bradford defence out of position. Solihull’s winger Omar Bogie was able to shrug off the challenge from Knowles, and his driven shot was saved by the diving Deasy.
However, it was the Avenue who were looking to equalise from a set piece. An inswinging cross from Martin Drury landed into the feet of Marshall, but, his left footed strike was cleared off the line by the Moors defence.
HALF TIME: SOLIHULL MOORS 1-0 BRADFORD (PARK AVENUE)
After the break, Bradford were close to equalising via a deflection from an attempted clearance by the Moors. The Avenue’s winger Paul Walker played a neat one two with Matty James, and his cross was met by the Moors back line, but, despite clearing the ball, Jasbir Singh gathered the ball gratefully into his hands from close range.
A minute before an hour played, the Avenue, again, were looking dangerous, but lacked the cutting edge. Bradford’s winger Paul Walker drove forward with the ball from the edge of his own penalty area, and found Marshall, who struck a low effort from 20 yards which skimmed the far post.
Again, Bradford failed to hit the net. A free kick was awarded after a foul from Langdon on Marshall, but Paul Walker’s powerful effort was spilled by Moors goalkeeper Singh, only for the ball to squirm wide.
However, despite the Avenue dominance, the home side rattled the crossbar for the second time of the afternoon. A handball from Jordan Deacey gave the referee no option but to award a free kick, 25 yards from goal. A flighted delivery by Darryl Knights caught Deasy off his line, and the ball cannoned off the crossbar and cleared away by Martin Drury.
Once more, John Deacey’s men were searching for their first goal, but, Jasbir Singh was equal to an effort on target. The Avenue drifted the ball to the left wing, and substitute Rob O’Brien struck a right footed shot into the hands of Singh.
A minute later, the Avenue wasted a chance, inches from the goal line. A deep free kick from Marshall found Knowles who nodded the ball towards Nathan Hotte, only for his effort, somehow, clearing the bar in front of goal.
Nonetheless, the Avenue conceded a second penalty in successive weeks. Bradford substitute Rob O’Brien committed the foul inside the box, and, after a short delay, Omar Bogie sent Deasy the wrong way from the penalty spot.
Two minutes later, Bradford got on the scoresheet. A driving run by right back Michael Duckworth caused the Moors defence problems, and the ball spun into the feet of substitute Tom Greaves, who fired a left footed shot into the bottom corner from 12 yards.
With the Avenue pushing plenty of players forward, Marcus Bignot’s side were looking to get their crucial third on the counter attack. However, the Moors substitute Michael Blackwood dribbled past Knowles, but, Deasy produced a fine save from close range.
Nevertheless, Bradford continued to put pressure on their opponents. With only James Knowles and Tim Deasy in their own half, Avenue’s winger Walker flicked the ball to Marshall, only for the midfielder to blaze his right footed shot over the bar from distance.
With seconds remaining, the Avenue gained a corner, and with everyone, including Tim Deasy inside the box, Drury’s corner failed to find a Bradford man, and a clearance found unmarked Michael Blackwood, who slotted the ball into the unguarded net.
FULL TIME: SOLIHULL MOORS 3-1 BRADFORD (PARK AVENUE)
Solihull Moors: Singh, Midworth (c), Langdon, Denny, Kemp (Pierpoint 30), Spencer, Knights (Bennett 81), Fleet, English, Angus (Blackwood 60), Bogie.
Subs not used: Acton, Clarke.
Scorers: Kemp 12, Bogie 80 pen, Blackwood 90+4.
Bookings: Langdon, Bogie
Bradford (Park Avenue): Deasy, Duckworth, Drury, Marshall, Knowles, Hotte, Davidson (Greaves 70), Garner (Holland 62), James, Deacey (O’Brien 74), Walker
Subs not used: Jackson, Radcliffe.
Scorer: Greaves 83.