Vanarama National League football returns to the MBi Shay Stadium this weekend, as FC Halifax Town go in search of their first league win since September against Surrey outfit, Woking FC.
The Cardinals, fresh from their 1-1 draw against League One side Bury in the FA Cup, have had a decent start to their league campaign, and look set to be difficult opponents come Saturday afternoon.
The Shaymen have seen their results take a downward turn following their start to the season, which saw Billy Heath’s men sit comfortably inside the top ten. However, after a string of draws and defeats, Town find themselves mid-table having not won since September 23rd.
It has been a difficult period for Town, who endured a similar run this time last season in the National League North, although the Shaymen will surely be fired up to go in search of the three points following a break in their fixtures due to the FA Cup.
As for the visitors, Woking are on a poor run themselves in recent games. A string of three defeats in a row has marred what has been a positive season so far for the Cardinals, who finished eighteenth in the league last season.
Anthony Limbrick’s side currently sit eighth in the standings, just outside the play-off spots on goal difference following an impressive September, in which they won four out of six games. They will be hoping to re-discover that form if they are to keep in touch with the high-flyers come the busy Christmas period.
FC Halifax Town: DDDLL
Woking will no doubt be a difficult side to play against once the two teams walk out on Saturday, although one man, Joe Ward will certainly be one to watch out for due to his eye for goal.
Ward, who started his career at Chelmsford City, joined the Cardinals in the summer of this year, and has already started to make a name for himself. Having started all but one of Woking’s league games, Ward has netted six times so far, placing him three goals behind the league’s top scorer Bruno Andrade on nine.
With his previous club Lincoln City, Ward featured in the club’s historic FA Cup run, which saw him play at Arsenal’s Emirates Stadium in their Quarter Final defeat to the Gunners. For the Shaymen, dealing with Ward could be the key to getting the desired result should he start for the visitors.
The last time these two sides met in the league was during the 2015/16 campaign, with the results being a mixed bag on Town’s part. The home leg was disappointing to say the least, a 3-0 defeat at the Shay, courtesy of a Dan Holman brace and John Goddard, saw the Shaymen go on a five game losing streak.
However, the end of the losing streak saw a change in fortunes for Town, going on a run that saw no losses in ten matches (five wins and five draws). Towards the end of that run, the two sides met once again.
After going down to ten men, Andrade opened the scoring for the home side on the 35th minute, although this lead was not to last long. Just three minutes later and Sam Walker equalised for the Shaymen, who managed to hold on to bring the point back to West Yorkshire.
Referee: Peter Gibbons
Assistants: Richard Abson and Ben Atkinson
Fourth Official: Matthew Scholes
Follow the Game
There will be live updates and commentary available on the club website and Shaymen TV.
You can also follow the action via Town’s official Twitter account, @FCHTOnline.
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