By Dominic Scurr

SUNDERLAND loanee Luke Molyneux played a key role in Gateshead’s 2-1 win at Barnet on Saturday on his return to the starting XI. 

Molyneux v Dunston (Iain Buist - Newcastle Chronicle)
Molyneux v Dunston (Iain Buist – Newcastle Chronicle)

It was the 20-year-old’s first start in two months – his last coming in the 2-1 win at Barrow back in September.

Molyneux set-up Gateshead’s opening goal in the victory at Holker Street, and at The Hive on Saturday, he played a big role in Gateshead’s winner as he single-handedly launched a Gateshead attack with a determined 50-yard dribble to find Scott Barrow who rolled the ball to Luke Armstrong who wrapped up the three points.

“It was a great game,” said Molyneux.

“It was an entertaining game to be involved in to say the least. Both teams were creating chances but in the end we were the more clinical team and got the two goals and the three points.

“It was definitely all about taking our chances today. Barnet were a good team going forward and created a few good opportunities but we took our chances and they didn’t.”

The young winger came close to scoring for the Heed as his edge of the box effort came crashing back off the crossbar shortly before Barnet’s equaliser.

And after being restricted to appearances from the bench in recent matches, Molyneux was pleased to make an impact when handed a start.

“I was really pleased to start today, I felt great” he added.

“It was obviously a really tough game to come here and play against Barnet who were doing well but it’s good for me to get 90-minutes and more importantly for the team to get the result.

“For the goal, I just picked the ball up just outside our own box and making a big 50-yard sprint towards their goal and Scotty (Barrow) played a great pass to Luke (Armstrong) and it was an excellent finish by him.

“We’re back into the play-off places now which is where we want to be but we’ve got a tough game away at Leyton Orient next weekend so hopefully we can come away from there with a result too.”

Molyneux’s place in the starting XI came on the back of an excellent week in training according to Gateshead manager Steve Watson.

And the young forward feels as though he’s set a standard now as he aims to keep his place in the side.

“That’s definitely the standard if not even better than that, I just want to keep pushing on and showing why I should be in the starting-11 and making sure I don’t get out of it again as I did before,” Molyneux continued.

“It also shows all the lads who haven’t been playing every week that the gaffer will give them a chance if we keep our standards high in training which is a very good motivator for everyone.”