Late Toner strikes seals three points

Guiseley bounced back from their midweek defeat to Droylsden by taking all three points against Solihull Moors, thanks to a last-gasp strike from Northern Ireland international Ciaran Toner.

Photo courtesy of Claire Epton

In what was a drab first-half of football from both sides, few chances were created and the game was littered with free-kicks and stoppages. Neither side could get their passing games going and Guiseley’s cause wasn’t helped when striker Joe O’Neill went off injured midway through the first period after sustaining a punctured foot. The half petered out, leaving both the Moors’ faithful and the travelling Guiseley contingent hopeful of a more fluid second half.

Guiseley manager Steve Kittrick wasted no time in freshening his side up, bringing on midfielder Michael Burns for Lee Ellington at half time, having already replaced O’Neill with powerful forward Gavin Allott.

The changes began to take effect in the second period as Guiseley got on top of their opponents. Gavin Rothery, Danny Forrest and Allott all found themselves through on goal but the Moors’ keeper Jasbir Singh was equal to them. After continued pressure, just when it seemed that all Guiseley’s attacking momentum would prove fruitless, the ball fell to summer signing Toner to strike low and hard into the corner of the net and bag his second goal in three games.

Manager Steve Kittrick said: “For most of the second half we did everything but score but I think it was a matter of time. The pleasing thing is that in the second half we played further up the pitch and they listened to what we said. As a manager, you can’t ask for much more than that.”

Kittrick was also full of praise for match-winner Toner, commenting: “Ciaran has played for some good clubs at a good level. I said to him he’s got to take a chance, if you don’t buy a ticket you don’t win the raffle and he was taking shots and hitting the target fantastically yesterday.”

The Lions’ boss also stated that it is still unclear when O’Neill will return, despite a visit to Birmingham hospital after the game. Forward Alex Davidson could make his first competitive appearance next Saturday against Colwyn Bay after impressing in pre-season before sustaining an injury.

Guiseley welcome Blyth Spartans to Nethermoor on Tuesday night.

1Steve Drench   
2Jamie Clarke   
3Dave Merris   
4Ciaran Toner90  
5Danny Ellis   
6Simon Ainge   
7Joe O’Neill Allott 38 
8Danny Boshell  Yellow
9Lee Ellington Burns 46 
10Danny Forrest   
11Gavin Rothery   
12Michael Burns   
14Mark Bower   
15Gavin Allott   
16Peter Davidson   
17Jacob Giles   

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