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Wrexham’s dream start quashed by Solihull’s extra-time heroics

calendario 25.08.2021
by: Zach
  • England
  • League
  • Vanarama National
Wrexham’s dream start quashed by Solihull’s extra-time heroics

Wrexham’s a-lister good luck charms came frustratingly close to sealing an opening-day victory this National League season. Away at Solihull Moors’ Damson Park, the Reds stayed 2-1 up for over 60 minutes. Before the match, co-owner Rob McElhenney’s former It’s Always Sunny co-stars wished Wrexham well over social media. However, Hollywood hopes and goalkeeper Christian Dibble’s gloves couldn’t keep out a match-defining brace from Moors star Joe Sbarra. 

Sbarra opened the scoring in the 18th minute with a top-corner strike from outside the box, before Wrexham’s summer signing Paul Mullin equalised with a penalty just eight minutes later. Mullin earned promotion with a career-defining season at Cambridge United last year, and in a surreal twist, now leads the line for the world’s most famous non-league club. 

Although it’s early days, Mullin demands a shout as top goalscorer this season. The player bagged over 30 goals in League 2 last year, for starters. On Wrexham’s penalties and in open play, Mullin offers a formidable goal threat in the National League.

Fellow Wrexham signee David Jones seemed to have decided the game with a well-aimed volley in the 30th minute, but Sbarra left it late to equalise in the 94th. The four-goal thriller finished with the league’s first and only draw of the season so far, placing both clubs joint ninth and tenth in the table. 

Ultimately, Wrexham came within a hair’s breadth of securing the victory, and, as manager Phil Parkinson stated after the game, ‘we should really be talking about three points’. With striker Jake Hall’s goal ruled offside, and debutant Wrexham defender Aaron Hayden delivering a masterclass at centre back, the club offered a lot to take to their next game. 

Rumour has it Wrexham seek to further reinforce their back lines, after links with League 2 Cheltenham Town’s captain Ben Tozier developed in recent weeks. It seems no club in League 1 or 2 can stay safe from Wrexham’s well-funded ambitions. 

As the gaffer said, the squad will ‘dust ourselves down and take the point and move on to next week’. Facing Eastleigh, who finished one place below Wrexham last season, the club can flex just how far they’ve come in a few short months and where their ambitions lead them next.

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