As FC Halifax Town succumbed to an opening day defeat, debutant and latest signing Michael Duckworth says that he is looking forward to the season ahead with his new club.
The 25-year-old, signed from Fleetwood Town on a one-year deal, played the full 90 minutes as goals from Shamir Fenelon and James Rowe meant that Aldershot Town became the first team to win at the MBi Shay Stadium in the 2017/18 Vanarama National League season.
Duckworth’s signing came out of the blue for most Town fans, having only been announced as a starter just 45 minutes prior to kick off. The right-back was certainly thrown in at the deep end, after what was a slightly difficult deal to push through following the recent interest.
“There was a bit of complication at Fleetwood at the time, trying to work out a deal. I am just glad it got done in the end.
“I am 25 now, I need to be playing week in week out so I feel like this is the best place to be at this moment in time.
“To be fair I have got a few friends here as well who I have played with down the years. Obviously, (Dion Charles) who is on loan from Fleetwood told me what it is about down here. I have played here before when I was in non-league so I am looking forward to the season.
“I hope I can bring my experience, I have played in a fair few games in the league so I would like to think I can bring something to this club”.
The game itself produced plenty of chances for the home side to take the lead. Tom Denton’s first half header looped agonisingly close over the bar, in what was probably Town’s best chance of the game.
In the end though, football is a game of taking your chances, and Aldershot certainly did so. Scott Garner conceded a questionable penalty in the final moments following an excellent challenge on Shaun Okojie, much to the bemusement of the Shaymen faithful as Rowe dispatched well.
However, despite the result, Duckworth is clearly keeping his spirits high after catching a brief glimpse of the style of play he can expect during his time in West Yorkshire.
“I thought we did well, we had chances through penalty shouts but from our mistakes we gave them two goals. I do not think the score line reflected the game.
“There was a lot of positives, a lot of good play in spells but, in the last fifteen minutes of the first half, they got on top and we didn’t start right in the second half. If we clear that up then we will be fine”.
The result may not have been the desired one, but the Shots evidently displayed why they are likely to be aiming for the play-offs yet again. For Duckworth, it was a tough debut, but he is quick to remind everyone that there is more to come from the Shaymen.
“It was tougher than what I thought it would be. They were a good side, obviously they did well in this league last year so they know the league well.
There will not be many teams that come here and play the football (style) they did today.
“We have just got to put that behind us and go again on Tuesday. It will be a completely different game against Barrow so I am looking forward to it”.
To see the full interview with Duckworth along with post-match reaction from Billy Heath and Connor Oliver, head over to Shaymen TV.
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