Neil Aspin labelled Lee Gregory as the “most clinical” striker in the Skrill Premier, as his star man’s hat-trick inspired FC Halifax Town to a 5-1 away win at lowly Hyde.
Gregory’s superb treble at Ewen Fields – for a hat-trick of hat-tricks in a prolific campaign – puts him on 23 league goals, just two behind Luton’s Andre Gray in the league’s ‘Top Goalscorer’ chart, and comes a week after Aspin joked that his goals had “dried up.” This week, the Shay Chief told Shaymen Player:
“He never goes a run of games without getting any goals but he has had a couple of games where he hasn’t had any service or chances.
“He wasn’t at his sharpest last week but certainly today he’s back on the scoresheet and once he gets that first goal his confidence is up. His last two goals were really good finishes.
“Andre Gray is doing really well but he will get more chances at Luton. So, chances to conversion, Greggs is probably the most clinical because Luton have been winning games at will.
“We’ve struggled in games where Greggs hasn’t had many chances and if you look away from home, he has been feeding on scraps. He has done exceptionally well to get the number of goals he has got.”
Ryan Crowther – playing against his former club – and Paul Marshall also joined Gregory on the scoresheet, and both in splendid fashion. Crowther got the eventual rout underway with a well-struck volley from the edge of the area inside ten minutes, whilst Marshall curled home Town’s third from range five minutes after half-time. But it was Marshall’s all-round performance which impressed Aspin, who revealed:
“You’d like to get an early goal in every game but it doesn’t always happen. It was a good goal from Ryan and it was an important goal as it settled us down and it got us in front. There were some really good goals today.
“One player who hasn’t had a lot of mentions this season is Paul Marshall and I thought he was excellent today. His work-rate was tremendous, his passing was good and he scored a great goal.
“I must give him credit because he has been a player who I have left out on occasions when the team hasn’t performed but his application and efforts have been tremendous over the last few weeks.”
The victory, against a Hyde side who haven’t won at home this campaign, was only the Shaymen’s second on the road in the league all season but Aspin, backed by a large and boisterous away following, believes his side, who are now just three points away from the play-off positions, still deserve a lot of credit for the performance. He said:
“I don’t expect that the players will get much credit for winning this game today but I will certainly give a lot of credit to the players. I watched Hyde a couple of weeks ago at home to Aldershot and although they have had a difficult season they still played with a lot of spirit, they were still good in possession and they still caused problems for Aldershot.
“They did well against Braintree last week as well but it’s just unfortunate that it is the story of their season that they play good football but don’t get the results.
“I didn’t underestimate them in any way today but we wanted to be on the front foot from the start and to be fair to the players they did that. It was a good result for us.
“There is always pressure at our Club because people expect a lot and it’s hard to keep everybody happy. There are always people ready to criticise.
“But I certainly wouldn’t criticise the players for their efforts this season. I know that on our travels we haven’t performed as we have done at home but it is not through a lack of preparation or effort or change of formation. We set up to play games away as we have done at home without the results.
“I feel for the away fans because they follow us all over the country and they haven’t had a great deal to shout about.
“Full credit to the supporters who came today. The way we have been away from home, there was no way that today would have been a given three points. They backed us today. It was nice to get some fans behind the goal and I appreciate they turned out again away from home.”
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