Bradford Park Avenue 1 Halifax Town 3: Aspin joy as Town soar

BOSS Neil Aspin watched his side move 12 points clear at the top of the Evo Stik Premier Division last night and declared himself delighted.

First half goals from Jamie Vardy and Lee Gregory and a second half spot kick from Tom Baker saw Town return from Bradford Park Avenue with a 3-1 win.

But it was an ugly match on an ugly night with Scott Phelan seeing red for the Shaymen and Mark Hume sent off for the home side.

"I am as pleased as I have been with any result this season because that was a big win," said Aspin.

"It was always going to be a game for men not boys and my players stood up.

"Even though we were two up at half time we needed to be because the wind was so strong and I felt we were in for a difficult second half.

"It was difficult to play even with the wind because everything you hit forward was over-hit.

"It spoiled the match and it was not the best game of football we have had this season, but it was incident packed."

Avenue got back into the game with a controversial goal, awarded by the linesman after the referee had initially given the home side a penalty after judging that Aaron Hardy had handled on the line.

"I thought he had given a penalty and would have preferred that to give us a chance to save," said Aspin. "Then he gave the goal and booked Aaron but whichever way you look at it, it was a bad goal to give away."

Town hit back with a Baker penalty which settled the nerves again.

"We were under pressure after they scored and for the next 10 minutes were at our worst," said Aspin.

"The penalty changed the game and killed them off. It was crucial.

"When we went 3-1 up I felt we would win the game."

Phelan was dismissed after 75 minutes for a tackle on home skipper James Knowles and Hume was red carded for a similar challenge on James Riley.

"I didn't see the Scott Phelan challenge, but the ref said it was two-footed and if it was he had to go," said Aspin. "I saw their players' challenge and that was a red card."