Salford City were mediocre at best as they were defeated 2-1 by relegation-threatened Sutton United at the Peninsula Stadium this afternoon. 

It is the first time this season that Sutton United have won three on the bounce and it ends a three-match unbeaten streak for the Ammies as they failed to get themselves going on a sunny Friday afternoon in Salford. 

Salford City made three changes from their 2-1 win away to Notts County, with Junior Luamba, Callum Morton and Declan John each coming in for Luke Garbutt, Callum Hendry and Dan Chesters respectively.

Both sides struggled to make any real chances within the opening 30 minutes as they both had to settle for creating half-chances which were either off-target or straight at the keeper.  

The first real chance of the game came in the 33rd minute when Conor McAleny picked up the ball in midfield and used some fancy footwork to bypass Sutton’s midfield.

He got to the edge of the box, just inside the ‘D’, and looked to place a shot in the bottom right corner, however, it was just wide of the goal. 

The visitors then responded with a chance of their own, as they came forward and found Nino Adom-Malaki on the left flank.

The winger beat Theo Vassell before putting in a dangerous ball across goal which met a Sutton United player but was deflected out for a corner by Curtis Tilt. 

It was the away side who would grab the opener, through Oliver Sanderson which came from a free kick in the middle of the pitch on the halfway line which was put into the box by Charlie Lakin. 

Captain Harry Smith met the header and flicked it on into the path of Sanderson who prodded it home beyond Alex Cairns and into the bottom left corner to make it 1-0 to the London club going into half-time.

Photo by Finley Gaynor


Salford manager Karl Robinson obviously saw a lot wrong with that first half as he made a triple substitution at half-time; Junior Luamba, Callum Morton and Declan John made way for Kelly Nmai, Callum Hendry and Connor McLennan. 

The changes at half-time appeared to work straight away, as Salford responded with an equaliser soon after the referee got the second half underway.

Elliot Watt found substitute Hendry in the box with a good ball who cut inside beyond a Sutton defender before firing a shot at goal.

Arnold parried the shot away but only as far as Ryan Watson who arrived in the box late and met the rebound with a nice finish into the bottom left corner. 

After the goal, however, Salford seemed unable to sustain the pressure which led to the equaliser as Sutton hit the front again in the 63rd minute, through another goal from Sanderson.

Josh Coley received the ball out on the right flank from Ryan Jackson and put a cross into the box, but it was not dealt with properly and the ball found its way back in the box towards the 20-year-old who struck it on the half-volley and beyond the reach of Cairns, into the bottom left corner.

As the final 10 minutes approached, neither side was really threatening each other with the visitors looking the livelier of the two sides.

Salford did push hard for an equaliser with Kelly Nmai coming closest in injury time as he dragged a pass back across the box which went astray.

The match ended with huge cheers from the 137 travelling Sutton United supporters as their side saw out a 2-1 win which sees them now just one point from safety. Meanwhile, Salford dropped to 20th place.

Up next for Salford is a trip to Walsall on Easter Monday, whilst Sutton host Swindon on the same day in what are big games for either side.

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