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Solihull Moors: It Was A Really Interesting Tactical Battle

Posted by Kelly Gilchrist
Posted on Wed 9 Nov 2022
Posted in Interviews

Following FC Halifax Town’s 1-0 win away at Solihull Moors, manager Chris Millington spoke to Shaymen TV to give his thoughts on the game.

“I really enjoyed it and it was a really interesting tactical battle,” Millington said. “We knew from our analysis what a quality possession-based team Solihull have and Neal Ardley teams always are.

They look to build possession and play through the thirds and they do it well. They’ve also got a number of players who’ve been together for a few seasons now so they’ve been building on that and working towards what you’ve seen tonight for a couple of seasons. We knew what to expect and we went into it with a game plan. We had bodies in the right positions as we knew what threats we’d have to neutralise and we knew where we’d be able to hit them. So, throughout the first half we were fairly controlled out of possession and it took us probably the first 10 minutes to get to grips with their rotations and for the lads to see what they needed to do to nullify them. Obviously, the goal is a great help as it gives us the confidence that what we’re doing is working. Then, in the second half, apart from a couple of spells of possession, short spells of possession and a couple of crosses into the box I think we’ve been fairly comfortable. Of course, the lads have done a great job in seeing the game out as well.”

Jamie Cooke bagged the only goal of the night after the Solihull keeper could only palm it down for Cooke to tap home.

“Jamie’s done brilliantly to get in the box,” Millington told Shaymen TV. “Bit of a scruffy finish, he’ll claim they all count and he’s right of course. You’ve got to be in there to finish them. You’ve also got to mention Angelo Cappello who’s been asked to do a specific job today in the wide areas. For the first 10 minutes I think he struggled to get to grips with how he was going to manage to press when he was overloaded 2v1 in the wide areas. So, he’s solved that problem and done it exceptionally well and got the assist which is the icing on the cake for him really because 90 percent of what he’s had to do today has been hard graft. He’s done that really well and I’m pleased he’s got the assist. Jamie’s a great lad so whenever he scores a goal, you’re always pleased for him.”

Despite Solihull pushing more in the second half, the Town defence stood firm to keep the clean sheet and ensure the Shaymen took all three points.

“Sam’s had a few crosses to deal with and he’s dealt with them really well,” Millington said. “Let’s not minimise that input because if he wasn’t so capable in that area then it might have been a bit more challenging. But we’ve got to mention the back three today; Tom Clarke, Jack Hunter, and Jamie Stott who were fantastic today. I don’t mean this disrespectfully but they’ve made it look quite comfortable for themselves. They’ve dealt with things early, they were cool, calm and collected, balanced off and gave each other some cover. People may not notice the contribution they’ve made today but that’s a real credit to them. They’ve defended so well tonight that people may not actually pick up what they’ve done to maintain the clean sheet for us.”

Up next for the Shaymen is another away trip, this time down to Bromley and Millington is anticipating another hard-fought game.

“It’ll be a challenge as they’re a good team,” Millington told Shaymen TV. “They’re always a threat but we know what a trip to Bromley involves. They will look to impose their style on us so we’ve got to stand up to that. The pleasing thing for me is that we’re defending so well and we’re looking so solid so if we continue that then we have got goals in the team. Jamie Cooke is starting to weigh-in with his, we know Mani’s goal scoring record of recent games and Rob Harker is a goal threat as well. If we are as organised and resilient as we were tonight out of possession, I know the energy we’ve got will give us chances to create and score.”

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