Sutton United manager Paul Doswell was delighted with the 4-0 battering of basement boys Guiseley on Saturday, despite his side not firing on all cylinders.

The U's had to be patient before taking the lead in the 34th-minute through on-loan Wigan Athletic defender Terell Thomas who poked the ball home from close range for his first goal in Sutton colours.

Two further strikes early in the second half from Byron Harrison (50) and Craig Eastmond (56) gave United a vice-like grip on the game before an own goal by goalkeeper Luke Coddington added the gloss with 15 minutes remaining.

With both the sides eager for the points for different reasons, Doswell was pleased to negotiate another potentially tricky hurdle.

"These are often the hardest games to win," he told SUFCtv.

"When you've gone away and won at Torquay in the circumstances that we did and [got] a good result at Dover, then you need to make your home games pay.

"Guiseley had played a game less than Torquay and could have gone above them if they had won today, so we knew it wasn't going to be an easy game.

"There was a key part of the game when [Jamie] Butler has made an outstanding save to keep it at 0-0 and then we've gone up the other end and scored.

"We weren't at our best in the first half, that's for sure. But in the second half, once the second goal went in, we were comfortable and played some really good, expansive, football.

"I picked up on how narrow they were defensively so we asked Tom [Bolarinwa] to stay out very wide and I thought he was man of the match and a threat all day."

For a long time on Saturday it seemed United were about to cut the deficit at top of the table to three points but leaders Macclesfield Town  scored a late winner at home to Maidenhead United to preserve their five point advantage over Sutton.

The U's take an eight-game unbeaten league run into March and with the end of the regular season coming into sight, Doswell is keen to play down any talk of nerves.

"I don't think there is a nervousness in the camp, if I am being honest," he said.

"We just didn't play very well and, at this level, that happens.

"We are taking the old adage of a game at a time and I don't think the players are looking at whether we are second, top or fifth because the league is changing week in, week out.

"What we have now done is given ourselves a 10 point cushion between us and eighth place, which is what we should be looking at - can you get in that top seven.

"And that's what we need to be ticking off, is making sure we get into the play-offs, which was the original goal.

"The next step, if we can get there, would be can we finish second or third because it's a huge advantage."

Sutton lost 2-1 at home to Merstham in the Surrey Senior Cup quarter-finals on Tuesday night.

In a match played in sub-zero temperatures, the U’s took the lead in the 28th minutes through Tommy Wright but the Bostik Premier Division side hit back with two goals in the second from substitute Tayshan Hayden-Smith.

On Saturday, Sutton make the long journey to West Yorkshire to face struggling Halifax Town, weather permitting.