By Jack McGraghan

Jon Mellish felt that Mike Williamson’s controversial sending off ultimately led to Gateshead’s downfall following Tuesday’s 1-0 defeat at Solihull Moors.

Mellish v Solihull (Charlie Waugh)
Mellish v Solihull (Charlie Waugh)

Mellish’s half-century for the Heed was marred when Williamson was shown a straight red card following an off the ball incident five minutes before the break with the game goalless. The Moors capitalised just after the hour mark as Nathan Blissett headed home from a corner.

Mellish felt his fellow centre-back was hard-done-by, saying: “I think it’s never a sending off.

“They’ve got into a bit of an altercation but Mike has been pushed into him and it’s never a red card.

“I thought we dealt with them well after that, it was just a corner that has let us down in the end.”

The defeat is Gateshead’s first since Ben Clark took the managerial reins in January and sees the Heed drop to eighth in the National League, one point outside of the play-offs.

“We’re gutted to be honest,” continued the England C international.

“I thought up until the red card it was a good even game, I thought we dealt with their physical side and their long balls really well.

“We looked to play some good football with Greg (Olley), Whitey (Tom White) and Jack (Hunter) and we created some good chances.

“I thought we could have gone on to win the game but the red card pinned us back and restricted us a bit.”

Despite the result, there was a positive note for the defender, who made his 50th Gateshead appearance on Tuesday evening – a milestone he is delighted to reach.

“I’m buzzing, it’s a real honour to play for the club and to get the 50th appearance is nice,” Mellish admitted.

“I love playing for Gateshead and putting that shirt on every game and I’m really enjoying it, especially with this bunch of lads this season.”