FC Halifax Town started 2024 with a goalless draw against Altrincham in the Vanarama National League.
Town had made several changes to the starting 11 including Millenic Alli, Ryan Galvin, and Max Wright not included due to injury.
Adam Senior showed defensive brilliance on the other end stopping Altrincham’s danger man Chris-Conn Clarke with a vital interception.
Town had the best chance in the opening 10 minutes with Andrew Oluwabori winning the ball from Sam Roscoe. His effort was hit straight at ‘keeper Ethan Ross. The Town forward tried his luck from a longer distance, but it was high over the bar.
Matt Kosylo looked to take advantage of Town switching off at the back but ‘keeper Sam Johnson and Jordan Keane performed two clearances off the line to keep the game goalless.
Conn-Clarke continued to build on the momentum as Johnson saved his attempt from outside the box.
Senior was a nuisance on the other end as he performed another brilliant solo run into the penalty area, but his left-footed effort was dragged wide of the far post.
The Robins thought they had taken the lead through Regan Linney whose fortunate deflection from a clearance led him to be one on one, but it was a chance wasted as the effort sailed past the far post.
Thompson-Sommers was booked after a sliding challenge and to the amusement of the home fans, Matt Kosylo was booked for arguing with referee Ruebyn Ricardo.
The second half started with wing-back Tylor Golden cutting inside the final third with a left-footed effort saved by Ross. Jack Hunter was on the follow-up, but it hardly troubled the Altrincham keeper.
Oluwabori played a brilliant ball to Thompson-Sommers on the right-hand side, and cut it back to Florent Hoti, but his first-time shot was skewed wide.
The Shaymen looked to exploit the right-hand side with Golden laying off Hunter as his attempt from range was caught by Ross.
Altrincham made their first change with Liam Brockbank replacing Lewis Baines in the 54th minute.
Kosylo pushed his luck too far with a poor challenge on Angelo Cappello and was given a second yellow card and sent off. Another amusing moment for the home fans as they waved him off.
In response, the Robins made a second change with George Wilson replacing Conn-Clarke in the 59th minute.
Town looked to take advantage from a corner and the ball was laid off for Jordan Keane who put too much power on the shot as it went over the bar.
Golden played a dangerous cross to meet the head of Jamie Cooke which was brilliantly saved by Ross at full stretch.
The most controversial moment in the second half came in the 72nd minute with Cappello making a brilliant run down the left-hand side and went down inside the box. Ricardo decided to book the wing-back instead of pointing to the spot. At the same time, Altrincham made their final change with Linney making way for Dior Angus.
The Shaymen made their second change of the evening with Rob Harker replacing Oluwabori in the 66th minute.
In the dying minutes, Thompson-Sommers tried his luck from long range, and it was another brilliant save from Ross to keep the away side in the game.
The fourth official added 5 minutes of additional time to decide a winner at The Shay.
The final whistle blew, and the game ended goalless at The Shay. Town will be the more frustrated of the two sides as the decision to deny the penalty will be the key talking point of the second half.
The Shaymen will return to action this Saturday against Southend United with a 3pm kickoff.
FC Halifax Town
1 Sam Johnson ©, 16 Jordan Keane, 7 Angelo Cappello, 2 Tylor Golden (19 Aaron Cosgrave 74), 6 Jamie Stott, 5 Adam Senior, 8 Jack Hunter, 14 Kane Thompson-Sommers, 18 Florent Hoti, 22 Andrew Oluwabori (9 Rob Harker 66) 10 Jamie Cooke
Subs: 20 Jimiel Chikukwa, 21 Tom Wilson, 30 Festus Arthur
29 Ethan Ross, 2 Lewis Banks, 4 Lewis Baines (12 Liam Brockbank 54), 7 Matt Kosylo, 8 Isaac Marriott, 9 Regan Linney (14 Dior Angus 72), 10 Chris Conn-Clarke (19 George Wilson 59), 15 Jake Cooper, 16 Sam Roscoe, 6 Elliot Osborne, 30 Alex Newby
Subs 21 Matt Gould, 44 Dan Mooney
Referee: Ruebyn Ricardo
Yellow Cards: Thompson-Sommers 38, Kosylo 38, Hoti 58, Cappello 72, Brockbank 84, Cooke 90, Cooper 90
Red Cards: Kosylo 56
Attendance: 2311 (336 away)
FC Halifax Town 0 Altrincham 0
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