On-loan midfielder Harvey Gilmour was at it again, following his double at Morecambe last weekend with the solitary strike of a 1-0 win for Tranmere against Macclesfield Town at Prenton Park.
It was a bright spot of a very wet evening with heavy rain falling throughout the game.
Micky Mellon made a couple of changes to the side which won 4-3 at Morecambe last Saturday. Top goalscorer James Norwood returned up front in place of Paul Mullin, while injury meant Zoumana Bakayogo missed out, his place going to Jake Caprice with Adam Buxton shifting across to left back.
There was an early chance for Buxton after 12 minutes. A dead ball specialist, scoring some excellent goals from set plays during his time at Rovers, he curled a 25 yard free kick around the wall but onto the base of the post before the Macc defence cleared.
A few minutes later, the visitors thought they had taken the lead when a deep free kick taken by Michael Rose was headed into the Rovers goal. The assistant referee’s flag was raised though, the goal disallowed for offside.
Other chances in the first half were few and far between, Connor Jennings heading well wide, James Norwood stinging the hands of ex-Tranmere ‘keeper Rhys Taylor with a header while Macc caused a few problems with balls into the penalty area.
And so the sides went in at the break with the scores goalless.
After a slow start to the second half, Rovers started to create opportunities on goal. The returning Norwood did well on the left edge of the penalty area on 57 minutes, drilling a powerful left footed shot towards goal only for Taylor to tip the ball onto the outside of the post.
And then a few moments later, the eight-goal striker was played through on goal but his effort was blocked by Taylor’s feet.
Midway through the second period, Jonny Smith was withdrawn from the action, with Larnell Cole being brought on to replace him.
It was Macc’s turn to hit the woodwork on 70 minutes, from a very similar position to Buxton’s earlier effort on goal. Rose’s free kick beat the wall and goalkeeper Scott Davies but ricocheted back into play off the inside of the post before the Rovers rearguard cleared their lines.
The elusive goal came on 73 minutes, and Connor Jennings played a huge part in its creation.
The former Macclesfield man skipped past a couple of defenders down the left touchline, somehow keeping the ball in play, before cutting the ball across for Harvey Gilmour who timed his run perfectly and struck the ball as sweet as nut to give Taylor no chance. His third goal in two league matches, capping another good performance from the youngster on loan from Sheffield United until January.
Rovers looked the most likely to get another goal, and had a great chance to do so when Norwood did ever so well to bring the ball down and then play a sublime slide rule pass to Jennings, who flicked the ball past Taylor but unfortunately also past the far post.
Nathan Blissett, who had a brief loan spell at Prenton Park in 2015-16, had a header off target in stoppage time, but the visitors’ goal threat was minimal in the final stages, and Tranmere continued their good run of form by picking up another three points.