Match Centre

FC Halifax Town (A)
15:00 - Monday 28th December 2020
National League (The Shay)
Goals: Josh Hancock [31'] Dan Mooney [70']
Goals (Opponent): Luke Summerfield [17' pen] Billy Chadwick [30'] Martin Woods [46']
Attendance: 0
Referee: Rebecca Welch
1 Tony Thompson
3 Connor Hampson
5 Tom Hannigan
6 Jake Moult (c)
10 Josh Hancock
11 Yusifu Ceesay
15 Matty Kosylo
23 Tom Peers
24 Joel Senior
29 Alistair Smith
35 Harrison Holgate
FC Halifax Town
1 Sam Johnson
2 Jeff King
5 Neill Byrne
6 Tom Bradbury
8 Kieran Green
10 Jack Earing
11 Danny Williams
19 Luke Summerfield
26 Martin Woods
31 Niall Maher
36 Billy Chadwick
12 Harrison Davison-Hale
3 Jack Senior
15 Gevaro Nepomuceno
20 Dominic Tear
32 Neil Danns
28 Dec 2020 by Admin

Following on from the 1-1 draw with Stockport County on Boxing Day, Altrincham are quickly back in action this afternoon. FC Halifax Town is the destination.

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28 Dec 2020 by John Edwards

*Josh joy .. Josh Hancock sweeps home Alty's first goal from a Matty Kosylo cross. Picture by Michael Ripley.

Altrincham's five-game unbeaten run came to a frustrating end after a late fightback fell agonisingly short of salvaging a point and condemned them to a 3-2 defeat at The Shay.

Twice, Alty trailed by two goals, but, each time, they hauled themselves back into contention by reducing the arrears in a lively encounter played in near-freezing temperatures.

On the second occasion, it was a sublime finish from fit-again second-half substitute Dan Mooney that trimmed Halifax's lead and raised hopes of the Robins maintaining their undefeated league and cup sequence.

But it was to prove too little too late, as Halifax survived late Alty appeals for a penalty and a glaring miss by Ryan Colclough to claim the points and leave the Robins empty-handed.

The Shay pitch is renowned as one of the biggest in the league, and Alty looked determined to make the most of the wide open spaces early on, with Joel Senior and Alistair Smith popping up on the right and Yusifu Ceesay's pace utilised on the left.

Barely two minutes in, Senior rolled a pass in from the right that Smith controlled before switching to his left foot and hitting a low shot that keeper Sam Johnson gathered with ease.

Smith was figuring prominently, as he has tended to more often than not since arriving from Mansfield on loan, but when he tried to tee up Josh Hancock with a pass from the right flank, Tom Bradbury stepped in with a timely interception to snuff out the danger.

If the early signs were promising, from an Alty perspective, they soon took on a more worrying appearance, as Halifax began to ease their way into the game.

Billy Chadwick had already tested Tony Thompson with a snap-shot from the edge of the area, in between Alty's two early half-chances, and the bustling Halifax striker had an even better opportunity to put his side in front soon after.

Thompson appeared to hesitate for a second over coming for a long through ball, a moment's indecision that left Chadwick in a one-on-one with the Alty keeper, who redeemed himself with a fine block from the striker's angled shot.

Still the danger wasn't over as the ball ran loose to Jack Earing, who, to Alty's collective relief, managed to blaze wastefully over a gaping net from 12 yards.

It was to be only a temporary reprieve for the Robins, however, as Halifax went ahead with an 18th-minute penalty after Tom Peers was adjudged to have handled in the area.

The danger came from a deep free-kick that Jeff King - nephew of Robins  legend John King - brilliantly brought down beyond the far post before hitting a cross that cannoned into Peers on the edge of a crowded six-yard box. Amid claims from both sides, referee Rebecca Welch sided with the home team and pointed to the spot for a penalty that was despatched with some venom by Luke Summerfield.

Ceesay's pace took him past his marker on the left in the 27th minute, only for Peers to fail to capitalise on the winger's low cross, and it went from bad to worse for Alty two minutes later as they went further behind with an ease that will have concerned manager Phil Parkinson.

Kieran Green rolled a pass from the right flank inside to Chadwick who had time and space to drill a low shot past Thompson from the edge of the area. It really was that simple for the Shaymen, but Alty at least responded swiftly and decisively with a superbly worked and expertly taken goal in the 31st minute.

Matty Kosylo, back on familiar territory after a hugely successful spell with Halifax, brilliantly darted past two defenders on the right, and when he whipped in a waist-high cross, Josh Hancock was on hand to steer a first-time shot beyond Johnson.

Alty started the second half with Dan Mooney on for Kosylo, who had featured brightly for much of the first 45 minutes but may have been considered a red card risk after already being booked, following a challenge that led to pushing and shoving between several players near the centre circle.

There was scarcely time for the change to take effect before Alty found themselves further behind  less than a minute into the second half.

Livewire left winger Danny Williams teed up Martin Woods for an unerring left-foot shot that gave Thompson no chance as it flew into the top right corner of the Alty net.

It was the worst possible start to the half for Alty but indicative of how Halifax had made light of their injury problems up front and looked a handful moving forward.

With Alty unable to replicate their rapid response to going two goals down in the first half, Parkinson took action to remedy matters by sending on Jacob Blyth for Peers on the hour.

It had little discernible effect to begin with, and, indeed, Alty might have gone further behind when Woods was allowed to advance unchallenged to the edge of the area before rifling a left-foot shot narrowly wide.

But while Blyth was still feeling his way into the game, Alty's other substitute produced a moment of sheer quality to reduce the arrears in the 70th minute.

Connor Hampson's deep cross from the left travelled some distance, but Mooney watched it all the way beyond the far post and met it with a brilliantly-executed first-time sidefoot volley to beat Johnson all ends up.

Hope renewed, Alty pressed for an equaliser and should have claimed one in the 82nd minute when Tom Hannigan won the aerial duel for a free-kick floated into the area to set up Colclough for a glorious chance that the Alty substitute dragged wide.

To make matters worse, loud appeals for handball and a penalty after a Hampson cross hit a Halifax defender were waved by the referee, allowing the under-pressure home side to see out the last few minutes and edge what had been an eventful encounter.

FULL TIME: FC Halifax Town 3-2 Altrincham. Alty are defeated for the first time in six competitive outings.
94' Chadwick booked for the Shaymen, for a foul on Holgate.
90' Five minutes added on. Alty trail 3-2.
88' A scramble in the area but the ball just won't fall to a yellow shirt. Hancock and Blyth try to create an opening, and then Smith comes in from the edge of the area, but there are enough blue shirts back there to prevent Alty from getting a meaningful shot away.
87' Big appeals for an Alty penalty, the ball drilled in hard from the left and it comes off a Halifax defender -- Alty players are adamant it hit an arm, but the referee waves play on.
82' WHAT A CHANCE! Alty may not get a better chance to equalise. Mooney whips in a free kick, Hannigan's header finds its way to Colclough who looks certain to score from point blank range, but he puts it agonisingly wide.
76' There's lots of space for Halifax to exploit as Alty go in search of an equaliser. Jeff King surges down the right and into the Alty box, but fortunately it comes to nothing and his ball goes harmlessly out for a goal kick.
72' SUB: The Robins make their final change, Ryan Colclough on for Yusifu Ceesay.
70' GOAL: FC Halifax Town 3-2 Altrincham. Dan Mooney is completely free at the far post and finishes sumptuously past Johnson from a Hampson cross.
YELLOW CARD: We are led to believe Jake Moult was booked earlier in the half for a tackle on a Halifax man over on the far touchline.
65' The Shaymen make their first change of the afternoon, Neil Danns replacing Kieran Green.
62' Little of note in recent minutes, the Robins seeing enough of the ball but struggling to create. Alty's new-look front three comprises Ceesay on the left, Mooney on the right and Blyth leading the line.
60' SUB: Alty's second change of the afternoon, as Jacob Blyth comes on to replace Tom Peers.
46' GOAL: FC Halifax Town 3-1 Altrincham. Martin Woods scores for the Shaymen within 20 seconds of the restart. It's a delightful left-footed hit from 25 yards that loops and curls over Thompson and into the top corner. Nightmare start to the half for Alty.
SUB: Confirmation of the change for Alty, Mooney on for Kosylo. We're back underway, with the Shaymen kicking us off for the second half.
Alty look to be readying a change for the start of the second half. Dan Mooney is preparing to come on, and we suspect that Matty Kosylo, who was booked in the first half, is the man coming off.
HALF TIME: FC Halifax Town 2-1 Altrincham -- work to do for Alty in the second half. There's been plenty of space out there for the Robins to exploit, but the Shaymen look dangerous every time they come forward, not least through the menacing Billy Chadwick, on loan from Hull City.
45' 2 minutes added on at the end of the first half. The home side still lead 2-1.
40' Two players booked following a challenge by Kosylo and some subsequent arguing from both sides. Kosylo receives a yellow for Alty and Byrne for the Shaymen.
32' GOAL: FC Halifax Town 2-1 Altrincham. Immediate response from the Robins, all instigated by a determined, penetrating run by Kosylo down the right flank. He gets to the byline and pulls back a delightful cross, and Hancock is in prime position to steer expertly past Johnson.
30' GOAL: FC Halifax Town 2-0 Altrincham. Billy Chadwick has space just inside the area and drills a low shot into the bottom corner.
28' Alty mount some pressure in and around the Halifax box; eventually Hampson's low cross from the left is easily held by Johnson, after a little bit of hesitancy from the home defence.
25' Peers has a great chance to get a shot away, but having tried to work the opening there's a blue shirt who pokes the ball away.
23' Alty have responded well to going a goal behind. Fantastic cross in from Kosylo is headed out for an Alty corner.
17' GOAL: FC Halifax Town 1-0 Altrincham. Luke Summerfield smashes the penalty into the top-right corner; Thompson has no chance.
16' Penalty to Halifax. Jeff King takes the ball down with aplomb in the area, and his attempted ball across the six-yard box is adjudged to have hit an Alty arm.
13' Best chance of the game so far goes to the home side. Kieran Green plays a ball down the line for Chadwick, who's one-on-one with Thompson; Thompson saves the attempt, but it falls to Earing, who blazes over the empty goal as yellow shirts bear down on the Halifax number 10.
4' Even start to the game. Nice big pitch here at The Shay, and it's end-to-end in the early exchanges.
1' Underway. Alty shooting towards the (vacant) home terrace.
FC Halifax Town make two changes from the side that went down 3-1 at Hartlepool United on Boxing Day; Jeff King and Jack Earing come in for Jack Senior and the suspended Nyal Bell. Bell, on loan from Stockport County, is serving a one-match ban having been sent off for two bookable offences at Hartlepool.
One change for Alty from the starting XI that took on Stockport County at Moss Lane just 48 hours ago: captain Jake Moult comes back into the side having served his one-match ban on Boxing Day, with Simon Richman dropping to the bench. Ryan Colclough is also back in the squad for the first time since he went off injured at Dagenham & Redbridge on 12 December.
Altrincham: Thompson, Hampson, Hannigan, Moult (C), Hancock, Ceesay, Kosylo, Peers, Senior, Smith, Holgate. SUBS: Mooney, Blyth, Densmore, Richman, Colclough
FC Halifax: Johnson, King, Byrne, Bradbury, Green, Earing, Williams, Summerfield, Woods, Maher, Chadwick. SUBS: Davison-Hale, Senior, Nepomuceno, Tear, Danns
Good afternoon, Robins! Welcome to today's match updates, coming to you live from The Shay. It's FC Halifax Town v Altrincham. Team news on the way.
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