Aspin satisfied with a draw

Neil Aspin
Neil Aspin

Neil Aspin said a 1-1 draw at Harrogate wasn’t a bad result as FC Halifax Town moved to within a point of securing a play-off place.

James Bolton’s second-half strike cancelled out a penalty from Adam Bolder before the interval as the two sides played out a hard-fought contest at Wetherby Road.

The Town boss said the blustery conditions and a bobbly surface didn’t help either team, but insisted it was vital to deny the hosts all three points in the race for the play-offs.

He said: “I thought Harrogate played some nice football in the first half on a difficult pitch and they were lucky to get the penalty. But we put them under pressure in the second half chasing the game.

“I would have liked to have created more chances than we did but it was very tricky pitch. Some areas were soft and some were hard, it was very uneven and there’s a slope as well so it was a difficult surface to play on.

“Although we wanted to win the game, it was very important we didn’t lose because it keeps them at arms length and that’s what we needed to do.

“I would never set out just to get a draw but if you’d said to me before the game you’ll draw, it’s not a bad result.”

Bolton was penalised for what the referee deemed to be a handball in the box for Harrogate’s penalty when he charged down a goal-bound shot, but Aspin felt the decision was unfair.

He said: “It was a harsh decision but then when you speak to the referee and the linesman they say he clearly handled it. But for me it was good defending and it wasn’t a penalty but you get these decisions.

“I’ve come across the referee a lot and he’s a genuine bloke and gives the decisions as he sees them but I disagree with him on that one.”

The on-loan defender has impressed since finding the net on his debut against Corby, scoring three times since joining the club from Macclesfield.

Aspin said: “If you’d said he could score goals well I would have played him earlier!

“He’s never really played right back, but he’s having to play there. He got thrown on in a game in midfield, he’s played centre back on Saturday and now he’s chipped in with valuable goals so you couldn’t ask for more, especially from a lad who’s on loan and I’m obviously delighted.”

The Town chief said his players have shown plenty of character during their recent run of fixtures and that it hadn’t been easy coping with the demands of such a busy schedule.

He added: “I’m not playing the game but I felt tired today because you’ve got the busy week last week wher we’re under pressure to get some points, then you go away to Boston, not an easy game, then Oxford, a difficult game and a late trip back.

“Then you get up and go to work and lads are going to work again today. Getting here when you’re having to drive as well, some players got here late then they’re back out onto the pitch, so it’s certainly not easy.

“They’ve shown a lot of character, a lot of desire and they’ve just got to keep going now.”