FC Halifax Town 4-0 Bradford Park Avenue

editorial image

Two goals from loanee Alex Simmons helped FC Halifax Town to a comfortable 4-0 win over rock-bottom Bradford Park Avenue at The Shay.

Three goals in nine first-half minutes blew Avenue away, with Tom Denton also finding the net for The Shaymen before the interval, and Jordan Sinnott adding a fourth in the second-half.

The defeat sets a new club record for the reformed Park Avenue of nine consecutive losses, with new boss Mark Bower in for a tough job to turn such form around.

Town were steady rather than scintillating in victory, effective rather than exhilarating as, for the second week running, they won at a canter.

New signing David Lynch was handed an immediate start after joining from Altrincham, with Cliff Moyo dropping to the bench, and Jordan Burrow dropping out altogether.

Billy Heath said he wanted Town to impose themselves on Bradford Park Avenue quickly, and got his wish when Tom Denton headed Kevin Roberts’ free kick across goal and an overhead kick by Simmons put Halifax ahead.

As for Mark Bower, he was discovering the scale of the task ahead of him less than 10 minutes in.

More questionable defending from Avenue led to the hosts’ second four minutes later when Jordan Sinnott’s long-throw wasn’t dealt with, and after Scott Garner’s shot was blocked, Denton scrambled the ball in.

Bower could only stand impassively as his new team collapsed in front of him.

Nicky Boshell was denied an immediate reply when Steve Drench responded well to keep out his low shot, but that was already very much against the run of play.

Town were scoring from every attack, and continued the trend when Lynch’s deep cross, after more hesitant defending, was nodded in by Simmons at the far post.

Less than 20 minutes in and it was already game over.

The ease with which Town’s goals had arisen won’t have escaped Bower’s notice, with Halifax not having to work especially hard for any of them.

If some of Town’s defending in recent weeks had been far from perfect, Avenue’s was just as bad.

Sinnott saw a well-struck effort from range parried by the beleaguered Dan Eccles before Lynch fluffed his chance of a debut goal by skewing a shot well over after Roberts’ cross wasn’t properly cleared.

Park Avenue were chasing shadows like a side with 10-men as Halifax enjoyed the same level of dominance they had against Ashton last weekend.

Sinnott fired high and wide after being given far too much time and space to shoot before Liam King wasted a glorious chance for a fourth just before half-time when he shot straight at Eccles after Sinnott won the ball back and put him clean through.

The Shaymen had slipped into something of a comfort zone since going 3-0 up, and this continued after the restart, with the hosts still seeing most of the ball but not doing an awful lot with it.

That was briefly interrupted when Sinnott sidestepped a desperate late challenge before stroking the ball past Eccles right-footed after Denton’s flick-on.

There was the odd long-range effort by Luke Dean and Ben McKenna, but full-time couldn’t come soon enough for the visitors.

Simmons spurned a chance of a hat-trick when he dragged a shot across goal after charging through one-on-one.

Halifax: Drench, Roberts, Garner, Hone, Wilde, Macdonald (Hughes 56), King (Hibbs 62), Lynch, Sinnott, Simmons, Denton (Peniket 79). Subs not used: Nicholson, Moyo.

Scorers: Simmons (9, 18), Denton (13), Sinnott (55)

Shots on target: 7

Shots off target: 7

Corners: 1

Bradford Park Avenue: Eccles, Toulson, Killock, Gumbs, Hill, McKenna, Wroe (Dickinson 41), D Boshell (Payne 73), N Boshell, Dean, Sinclair (Sharp 64). Subs not used: Kearns, McWilliams.

Shots on target: 2

Shots off target: 4

Corners: 6

Attendance: 1,761

Town man of the match: Alex Simmons

Referee: Marc Edwards