FC Halifax Town: Heath calls for collective responsibility ahead of Darlington rematch

Billy Heath
Billy Heath

Town boss Billy Heath says the whole team need to take responsibility for their poor defending ahead of their rematch with Darlington on New Year’s Day.

Town’s frailties at the back contributed to two of Darlington’s three goals on Boxing Day in what was Halifax’s fifth defeat in seven games.

Another defeat on Sunday could leave The Shaymen up to nine points adrift of the play-offs.

But Heath has stressed the importance of collective responsibility for the team’s defending.

“I think it’s important that we win, but it always is,” he said.

“We need to get back to winning ways.

“We haven’t been winning games of late but we’re still in a really good position.

“We have two games in hand and we have to win them.

“It’s important we start to put a run together.

“But we just have to keep working hard.

“I don’t think there was a lot in the game on Boxing Day, and I can’t fault the players for effort and commitment.

“But there was a lack of quality at times.

“The players know we need to win games.

“We have to defend better collectively - not just the back four.

“Their first goal didn’t come from a defender but from an attacker choosing the wrong option, and then we didn’t defend it at all well and three players missed the cross into the box.

“We need to be better on the ball, be brave, roll our sleeves up and work hard.”

Striker Adam Morgan is set to make his home debut on Sunday after netting twice in his first appearance for the club on Boxing Day.

Heath admitted his transfer was a long time coming.

“I understand the fans’ frustrations that they want to see players coming in,” he said.

“It took a long time - we targeted Adam well before his three goals in the FA Cup.

“We put seven days notice in on him six weeks ago.

“There was quite a bit of competition for him but he wants to play for us.

“He’s a good talent.

“He got two goals for us on Boxing Day, and the chip for his second one, he saw what he wanted to do with it and not many players would have even thought of that.”

Asked whether he envisages Morgan and Tom Denton forming a partnership together up-front, Heath said: “I would hope so.

“That’s not to say he can’t make a partnership with Richard Peniket, or that Richard can’t make a partnership with Tom.

“We have options now, which we’ve always said we needed, especially after Jordan Burrow left.

“Danny Clarrke can also play up front quite naturally.

“But even now, we need to bring in more players.

“Hopefully there may be two more before New Year’s Day - one loan and one permanently.”