FC Halifax Town: Wycombe preview

Scott McManus in action for Halifax against Bradford in the FA Cup first round last season
Scott McManus in action for Halifax against Bradford in the FA Cup first round last season

FC Halifax Town face Football League opposition in the first round of the FA Cup for the third consecutive season when they host Wycombe on Sunday (2pm).

Town have fallen at the first round stage against MK Dons in 2013 and Bradford in 2014, as well as against Charlton in 2011, but a win against Wycombe would see them progress into the second round for the first time since losing 3-1 at home to Chester in 2004.

Wycombe have won only once in their last six games, but have the best defensive record of any team in League Two.

Only West Brom have conceded fewer away league goals than Gareth Ainsworth’s team in the top five divisions.

By contrast, no other team in the top five divisions has conceded more home league goals than Halifax.

There are 38 teams separating the two clubs, who have never played each other before, with The Shaymen currently bottom of the National League having gone 29 games, not counting the West Riding County Cup, without a clean sheet.

Five of Wycombe’s 20 goals this season have been scored in the last 15 minutes.

Their top-scorers are midfielder Garry Thompson, who played under Halifax assistant manager Jim Harvey when he was Morecambe manager, and defender Michael Harriman, who both have three goals each.

Everton goalkeeper Russell Griffiths could be in contention to make his debut after joining on loan, while Kieran Sadlier, who was ineligible for the previous round against Guiseley, may also play if Town can persuade parent club Peterborough to give them permission.

Town were also hopeful Nicky Wroe’s loan, which expired after the Eastleigh game, would be extended in time for the match against Wycombe.

Kevin Roberts has recovered from his groin injury, and could reprise his role at right-midfield if Sadlier is ruled unavailable.

There will be a minute’s silence before the game to mark Remembrance Sunday.