GUISELEY are back within five points of the play-offs in the Vanarama National League North after securing a rare home win with a 3-0 victory over Leamington.

There was very little quality from either side in the first half at Nethermoor, but the Lions snatched the lead on the stroke of half-time.

A set-piece was only half cleared and Guiseley worked the ball to Gabriel Johnson, whose excellent delivery was headed home by Andrai Jones.

Having broken the deadlock, the Lions began to play with a bit more freedom and they doubled their advantage early in the second half.

A sweeping move led to a final ball that invited Kaine Felix to sprint down the inside right channel. He collected the ball outside the area and continued his run, before lashing a shot past visiting keeper Jake Weaver.

Leamington came close to halving the deficit when Joe Parker got two shots away in a matter of seconds.

His first shot went just wide but the visitors won the ball back from the goal kick and Parker had another sight of goal, but his low shot hit the inside of the post and was cleared away.

Both sides made late changes, one of which saw Jamie Spencer replacing Aram Soleman in Guiseley’s midfield. Spencer made a bustling run in stoppage time and was brought down just inside the area.

He jumped up to grab the ball and got the nod to take the spot kick himself. He drilled it past the outstretched Weaver to put the gloss on Guiseley’s victory.

The three points only lifted the Lions up one place to tenth but it was a vital win, with Farsley Celtic losing at home to Hereford and defeats for Spennymoor Town, Gateshead and Chester, who are all battling for the last two play-off places.

Joint manager Russ O’Neill said: “I didn’t think we were at our best but we are gradually learning how to grind results out and three goals at home and a clean sheet is just about perfect.

“We’re a young side and these lads are improving as individuals and improving as a team. They’re not used to this level of football but slowly and surely we’re getting there. Their mindset is improving and you can see it in our game, both on the ball and off the ball.”

Prince Ekpolo was named man of the match after a superb display and an assist for Felix’s goal.

O’Neill said: “He is another one who has jumped up two divisions to sign for us and we saw a lot of potential in him when he joined the group, but it was all about timing his progress.

“I think we got it just about right because he has put in some good performances since he got a place in the side.

“This was one of them - he was excellent, but I thought there were a few good performances and you need that from a team to win games in this division.”