SOLIHULL Moors secured a much-needed 2-1 victory against relegation-threatened Oldham Athletic as Neal Ardley’s side ended a seven-game winless run in all competitions.
Joe Sbarra and Andrew Dallas struck early in the second period for Solihull who should have been out of sight before John Rooney halved the deficit late on for Oldham at the ARMCO Arena.
The result means Moors sit seventh in the National League table just two points behind fifth-placed Barnet.
Both teams lacked quality in the opening 20 minutes with chances few and far between before Ben Coker’s free-kick was glanced narrowly wide by the head of Josh Kelly.
Moors dominated possession without creating a clear cut chance as James Clarke volleyed wide from 25-yards out.
However, Oldham ended the half on top as former Moors loanee Alex Reid forced Solihull goalkeeper Ryan Boot into a smart stop at his near post before Ben Tollitt hit the woodwork minutes later.
Moors came flying out of the blocks in the second half and were ahead inside 60 seconds.
Sbarra drilled the ball home from Dallas’s selfless pass after Kelly had initially pounced on a mistake in the Oldham defence to slip the latter through with a fine pass.
And the same duo combined for Moors second goal on 50 minutes as Sbarra’s exquisite back heel found Dallas who rolled the ball past Magnus Norman in the Oldham goal to double Solihull’s lead.
The home side looked to add to their lead as Dallas headed a tough chance wide before Sbarra was denied by a combination of Norman and the post.
Chances continued to come Solihull’s way as Ryan Barnett created some space with a couple of step-overs before his seeing his shot towards the top corner saved by the palms of Norman.
The Latics eventually threatened at the other end as Boot came racing off his line to clear the danger as Hallam Hope was slipped through on goal.
And Oldham halved the deficit on 89 minutes when Rooney’s corner was not dealt with by Boot or any Moors defenders and was allowed to travel all the way into the top corner.
Moors clung on during five minutes of injury time as Mark Kitching headed over from another Rooney cross at the death to ensure the home side clinched a vital three points.
Assistant manager James Quinn said: “It’s difficult when you’re coming off three straight defeats, I asked the lads before the game to stand up, we were outstanding all over the pitch.
“They gave us exactly what we asked for, my only criticism is that we should have been four or five up, I’m devastated for the lads at the back that they didn’t get a clean sheet.
“We looked back to our old selves, gutted that we conceded, when we run forward and play forward we can look unstoppable in this league and probably the league above.
“We gave the players a lot of time off and the gaffer knew they needed a break, they came back and trained brilliantly all week, the gaffer was spot on, on his judgemnet, he’s planned that and it has worked perfectly.
“We’ve been bandaging people up and just throwing them out there in the last five weeks, the lads have given it everything but they have looked tired.
“We’ve been carrying a few injuries which has reduced the squad size, it hasn’t worked for us, we’ve been unlucky in games and not as good as we should have been but we looked refreshed.”
Solihull are next in action at home to Aldershot Town on Saturday, December 10 with kick-off at 3pm at the ARMCO Arena.