FC Halifax Town v Cheltenham Town

FC Halifax Town 1 v 7 Cheltenham Town (National Conference)

FC Halifax this week appointed former Oldham Athletic boss Darren Kelly as the club’s new manager, the decision came as a bit of a surprise considering Kelly’s management record, with only one win in nine games in his first management job at Boundary Park.

It was always going to be a difficult to start for Darren Kelly and his assistant Jim Harvey as they welcomed last season’s Sky Bet League Two side Cheltenham Town to the Shay.

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The first twenty-five minutes of the game were fairly even with both teams creating chances in front of goal.  It was FC Halifax that had the first attempt on goal after seven minutes, when Danny Racchi’s shot was blocked and went for a corner.

James Bolton took the resulting corner which found Jordan Burrow free in the middle of the area, but his powerful header went over the crossbar without troubling Phillips in the Cheltenham goal.

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On eleven minutes, Cheltenham Town took the lead when a pass from Daniel Wright found Jack Munns on the left hand corner of the six yard box, his right-footed shot beat Matt Glennon into the bottom left corner to make it 0-1.

The next effort at goal came on twenty minutes as Jack Munns found Danny Parslow in the Halifax area, but his header from the centre of the box went wide of the right-hand post.

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Three minutes later, Hamza Bencherif struck a right footed shot from outside the box which was well saved by Dillon Phillips in the Cheltenham Town goal.

On twenty-eight minutes FC Halifax drew level following an excellent run by Josh MacDonald, who went passed two Cheltenham defenders before cutting into the area and pulling the ball back to Kingsley James, who slotted to ball passed Phillips to make it 1-1.

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FC Halifax were then on top for the next ten minutes as they looked to take the lead, Josh MacDonald and Daniel Racchi controlled the game whilst creating a number of chances.

On forty minutes, Cheltenham Town regained the lead when Rob Dickie played the ball to Amari Morgan-Smith in the area and his left-footed shot beat Glennon to make the half-time score 1-2 to Cheltenham Town.

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Cheltenham Town started the second half on top and scored with their first attack of the half just three minutes into the half.  Jack Munns collected the ball on the left-wing before sending in a curling cross to the six yard box, were Danny Wright stuck out a leg to make it 1-3.

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Cheltenham extended their lead just before the hour, Daniel Wright put through a defence splitting ball that Harry Pell collected on the left-hand side of the pitch.

The midfielder took the ball on cutting in front of the defender before placing the ball past Glennon to make it 1-4.

Between sixty-five and seventy minutes both sides made three substitution, the changes seamed to slow the game down with the only effort falling to Morgan-Smith but his shot was well saved.

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The rout continued as Cheltenham added a fifth goal on eighty minutes, Billy Waters  latched onto a ball in the FC Halifax area before firing a right footed shot from the edge of the box to the bottom right corner. 

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Cheltenham Town added a sixth and a seventh goal on ninety minutes, both goals were scored by Jack Munns the first was a right footed shot from the edge of the box and the second was from the penalty spot.

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Speaking after the match Halifax manager Darren Kelly said, “It’s hugely disappointing, especially with the supporters getting behind the team, but that’s not acceptable. After the game I’ve told the players what I think, I’ve been very honest.

On today’s performance it’s pretty much the opposite of how I want to do things and it’s not going to happen again. Everyone here including myself has to have a good hard look at themselves because that’s unacceptable.

All credit to Cheltenham, they were very good, but we didn’t respond after conceding and that’s disappointing, especially after the third goal the heads went down.  I am struggling to find any positives to take from the defeat, but says that a lot of work needs to be done.

Being honest I wasn’t really impressed from start to finish, I wanted to get some really good positives from today to take into Tuesday but at the minute I can’t seem to find any.

I learnt a lot from today, not just from the game but also about the players, obviously I only came in on Thursday so I didn’t get the opportunity to work with the players, perhaps if I had I would have had a better understanding and maybe I would have changed certain personnel.”

Match Details

FC Halifax Town – Glennon, Bolton, Banton, Hughes, Roberts, Brown, MacDonald, James, Racchi, Bencherif, Burrow (Subs) Porter, Hattersley, Walker, Hibbs, Tuton

Cheltenham Town – Phillips, Storer, Dickie, Parslow, Pell, Morgan-Smith, Munns, McLennan, Barthram, Wright, Downes (Subs) Waters, Kitscha, Hall, Rowe, Vaughan

Goals(FC Halifax) James (29) (Cheltenham) Munns (12, 90, 90p), Wright (47) Morgan-Smith (40), Pell (58), Waters (80)

Attendance – 1,267

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