FC Halifax Town: Kosylo leaves Shaymen with plenty of happy memories

Actions from Halifax Town v Leyton Orient, at The Shay. Matty Kosylo
Actions from Halifax Town v Leyton Orient, at The Shay. Matty Kosylo

The skill and flair of a Matty Kosylo at full pelt will be an abiding memory for FC Halifax Town fans.

The winger’s three years at The Shay came to an end this week when he joined fellow National League club Fylde.

Matty Kosylo thanks fans at the last home game of the season, FC Halifax Town v Wrexham, at the Shay, Halifax

Matty Kosylo thanks fans at the last home game of the season, FC Halifax Town v Wrexham, at the Shay, Halifax

Kosylo scored 31 goals for The Shaymen, and helped seal promotion from the Conference North in 2017.

“I’ve enjoyed it,” he said of his time at Halifax. “With the change to full-time, it affected me a bit personally.

“I didn’t really expect it at the time, and it pulled a bit of a sheet over last season with a few personal factors going on, and distractions.

“But overall I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the first two years, and then last year, the group of lads was brilliant. I’m going to miss them.”

13 May 2017.......    Halifax Town v Choley National Conference North Play-off Final at the MSI stadium Halifax. 'Towns Matty Kosylo runs at Chorley defender Stephen Jordan. Picture Tony Johnson.

13 May 2017....... Halifax Town v Choley National Conference North Play-off Final at the MSI stadium Halifax. 'Towns Matty Kosylo runs at Chorley defender Stephen Jordan. Picture Tony Johnson.

When asked if he felt he had improved as a player during his stint with Halifax, Kosylo said: “I’d hope to think so, I wouldn’t want it to be a waste. Obviously playing at a higher level develops you anyway.

“We got up at the first time of asking from the Conference North, which was a tough league, and then we competed well in our first year in the National League.

“There were games like winning 3-0 at Leyton Orient, the cup run last season - there’s been a lot of highlights.

“Personally, I feel like I have got better. But I think I can kick on again and hopefully keep on developing.”

Kosylo said the play-off final win against Chorley in 2017 was probably his biggest highlight.

“There was a massive crowd there, I think it was nearly 8,000,” he recalled.

“I’ve always said since that none of the play-off games were enjoyable, it was a case of getting the job done because it felt like they were really equal games and there was so much on the line.

“It was more relief than anything, as well as elation because it was my first trophy, having Halifax knock me out of the FA Trophy the year before.”

Kosylo said other moves had been in the offing before his switch to Fylde.

“In the summer when the club (Halifax) changed from part-time, I thought they would have been slightly fairer because they triggered my option (for another year) and went full-time, knowing I had a full-time job,” he said.

“I think that was a bit unfair, and that was a bit frustrating because I didn’t feel they thought about me much, although I do respect that they’re a club and a business, and they have to look after themselves.

“But there was interest last summer, and I think people ended up finding out about the Salford interest in November and then January.

“Those bids didn’t get accepted, which was frustrating again for me because that would have been a good move - it was really local to me, they had ambitions of getting into the league, which they succeeded with.

“That was frustrating, but I still cracked on and put 100 per cent in every day, and in the games I did what I could for the team.

“I knew my contract was up at the end of the season and Fylde’s interest was a positive, and I’ve ended up signing for them.”

Kosylo’s temperament has come under scrutiny from the Town supporters during his three years with the club.

“It is what it is, fans will have their own opinions,” Kosylo said on the subject.

“Facts are facts to be fair. Last season I picked up a lot of yellows, but I think I’ve only been sent-off once for Halifax.

“So once in three years for someone who’s hot-headed, passionate, wears his heart on his sleeve - I wouldn’t say it’s bad.

“I had a lot of frustrations in the background last year, but after speaking to someone privately last year, that could definitely have played a part.

“A lot of things were out of character. I do chat to refs a lot and I do probably go into tackles more than other wingers do.

“i would say I picked up more yellows and disciplinary things last year, but if you look at the seasons before, it’s not really been a massive issue.

“I’m not making excuses because I’m not that type of person, but I would say frustrations and personal things played a subconscious part in picking things up on the pitch.”

Kosylo feels has had a strong rapport with the Halifax fans.

“I would hope so because we got promoted, we stayed in the division, and I felt like I gave 100 per cent throughout my three years.

“They have backed me since I first started. I had a tough start, I wasn’t getting in the team.

“I felt once I got the opportunity I would be able to please them and get them off their feet, and I hope I did that.

“Last season was a bit disappointing for a lot of people, but I hope that doesn’t tarnish what we did the previous two years.”

The 26-year-old feels The Shaymen’s summer recruitment will go a long way to deciding their fate next season.

“I would say the transition to full-time is important if they want to progress,” he added.

“It went probably as well as it could have last year.

“I think expectations can be a little bit high at times. I would say that’s why people like me and Browny (Matty Brown) and others get frustrated, because they want more, they want to be more successful.

“I would say that depends on recruitment this year. The chairman’s said they’re not one of the highest budgets, they’re not going to splash out, so it’ll be tough.

“But you’ve seen the likes of Macclesfield and others try and get that team spirit and get up there.”