AFC Halifax travelled to the East Coast seeing in the new year with a well-earned victory over their opponents Grimsby supporters FC. A crucial 3 points saw the Shaymen’s supporters team rise to 2nd in the IFA English league table after continuing their strong performances at the close of 2021.
The 17-man squad travelled over in high spirits after the new year celebrations eager to impress. The game started slowly for AFC with Grimsby capitalising on an early defensive misjudgement to put the home side in the lead. That was not to last long however when Man of The Match Adam Ramsden headed the ball in from close distance from a well crossed corner by Ben Fawkes. Halifax soon began to dominate possession and played some lovely football. It was not long until Ben Fawkes made it 2-1 to Halifax when a 50/50 won by Ramsden found its way to Fawksey’s feet who struck it hard and low past the Grimsby keeper.
Harrison Peckover, freshly introduced from Matt Blackburn’s AFC Halifax JR side added to the scoresheet after Callum Hannan turned into an athletic champion, hurdling the oncoming defender feeding the ball to Ramsden who put it on a plate for Pecky to slot home making it 3-1. Grimsby’s character showed however when they found their feet and knocked on the Halifax’s door several times before converting to make it 3-2. Halifax responded quickly after yet again however when Lee Casalino intercepted a pass in defence, running the ball up field playing Ramsden through 1 on 1 who made no mistake in capitalising making it 4-2 at half time.
The second half saw Halifax start slowly yet again conceding an early goal after miscommunication at the back. However, after good chances for both sides it was Ben Fawkes who scored next securing his brace with an edge of the area shot which was spilled on by the Grimsby keeper to make it 5-3. Ramsdens Hat trick came a few minutes later when some good possession form Halifax found its way to Peckover on the wing who played a lovely ball into the box for Ramsden, facing away from goal who spun his defender like a prime Bergkamp and rifled home to make it 6-3. A consolation goal for Grimsby came when a debatable penalty was given which sent keeper Harry Scott-Peters the wrong way making it 6-4. With Grimsby enjoying some strong possession it was down to manager Marcus Stapley to make some tactical changes which saw Halifax manage the game to safety.
Overall, the performance from Halifax was enough to secure the 3 points however credit to Grimsby who made the most of their chances and never stopped throughout the game.
Manager Marcus Stapley said he “was content with the performance today especially how clinical we have been in the final 3rd. However, that being said we are under no illusion that there is still a lot of improvements to make if we are to challenge the top teams. Overall, I’m very happy to kick off the new year with 3 points and another strong performance”.
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