Connor Jennings scored two great goals to give Tranmere Rovers a 2-0 win in the FA Cup replay against Southport and set up a mouthwatering third round tie against Premier League Tottenham Hotspur at Prenton Park in the New Year.
It was a thoroughly professional performance from Micky Mellon’s men who kept their lower league opponents at bay throughout.
It was a change to a back three for Rovers with Manny Monthe and Steve McNulty coming in alongside Mark Ellis after missing Saturday’s defeat at Notts County.
And it was a solid start as Tranmere looked for an early goal to quieten a sell out crowd at Haig Avenue.
And they broke the deadlock in style on 15 minutes. Jake Caprice delivered a cross from the right which was half cleared. The ball sat nicely for a volley from Connor Jennings and he struck it as sweet as a nut to beat Dan Hanford as it flew in off the underside of the bar.
Paul Mullin had a couple of half chances as Rovers looked to double their advantage, while the defence stood strong at the other end.
Southport threw a few crosses into the Tranmere penalty area as the half drew to an end, but Jennings struck another beauty to make it 2-0 before the half time interval.
Again it was Caprice getting forward well down the right and a cross to the back post found Jennings who pulled away from his marker and volleyed into the bottom corner.
The start of the second half saw more pressure from the hosts, but it was matched by an excellent Rovers rearguard.
Long throw ins and crosses were pumped into the box, but the defence kept Southport at arms length and didn’t concede any clear cut chances on goal, bar a scuffed effort from Edwards which went a couple of yards wide and a shot from distance by Dion Charles which Scott Davies tipped around the post.
After those missed chances, the sting appeared taken from the hosts and Rovers coasted from thereon to secure a glamorous Third Round fixture against Spurs.