Aspin relieved to secure play-off spot

Neil Aspin

Neil Aspin

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Neil Aspin said he was relieved his FC Halifax Town side cemented their play-off place after a 1-1 draw with Guiseley at the Shay.

Lee Gregory’s 20th goal of the season brought Town level after Josh Wilson’s first-half penalty also took him to 20 for the campaign.

The Town boss was happy his team sealed their place in the top five before the last week of the season.

He said: “I’m really pleased. Nobody wants to be going into the last week needing points with the number of games we’ve had and the difficult games we’ve got coming up.

“It’s a relief to get over the line today and I must give our players tremendous credit because I thought we’d be heavy legged today.

“We played a little bit defensive in the first-half because I thought if we could keep it tight a the back and go in at half-time level we could have a go in the second-half.

“It was always my intention to make a couple of changes, probably at half-time, but your plans are obviously changed when you concede a goal.

“I thought we could have a go at them for 45 minutes but I didn’t think we’d be able to press high up for 90 minutes, not with the number of games we’ve had.

“Even in the first-half we had the better chances. In the last four times we’ve played Guiseley,

“I’d say that’s probably the least number of chances that they’ve created against us.

“I would have been happy to get to half-time at 0-0 and play more attacking in the second-half.

“But it was a bad goal to give away, another soft goal, and it’s unfortunate that James has had a difficult start to his career here.

“But he’s experienced and he’s not like a young lad, it won’t affect him. But he knows himself he’s got to be better.

“You don’t want to concede penalties but it’d be nice if the opposition could take penalties like we do - keep putting them in the stand!”

Aspin said Gregory’s goal will boost the striker’s confidence going into the play-offs and was fully merited after dry spell for Town’s top scorer.

He said: “It was a fantastic goal, I enjoyed watching that goal. I’m really pleased for Lee Gregory because he’s put in a hell of a shift over the last few weeks and he hasn’t got the goals.

“But he’s deserved a goal and it’ll just give him the confidence he needs going into the play-offs.

The Town boss said a club the stature of the Shaymen should be reaching the play-offs, but said his players had performed well in getting there.

He added: “I know we had games in hand and we had a point cushion ages ago but when you look at the fixtures we had, it was never going to be easy to get in the play-offs.

“It sounds like we should get in the pay-offs and I agree; a club this size should be, but it’s still a good achievement with all the games we had called off, trying to keep the players fit during that time and then having all the games at the end.”

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