FC Halifax Town: "We'll be going there to win on Saturday," says Wild ahead of FA Trophy clash at Alfreton

Table-toppers FC Halifax Town are targeting further progress in the FA Trophy on Saturday at Alfreton against a familiar face.

Thursday, 13th January 2022, 9:04 am
Pete Wild. Photo: Marcus Branston

The Shaymen, who moved four points clear at the top of the National League after Tuesday's 1-0 win over Grimsby, will come up against former manager Billy Heath in the fourth round tie.

Town would be just three more rounds from a second appearance in the Wembley final if they beat their former boss.

"I want to do well in the Trophy," said Wild.

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"It'll be another tough test. Matt Rhead, Dayle Southwell, excellent forwards.

"They've got a young lad in midfield who apparently is a young Kieran Green I'm told.

"Billy Heath always puts good teams together, robust teams, and I'm expecting a really interesting game there.

"And yet another different test for us. I love the fact that we keep getting different tests thrown in-front of us and certainly Saturday will be a different test."

When asked whether his side will need to win the battle on Saturday against their lower-league opponents, Wild said: "That's every week in football, if you don't turn up you get beat, if you're hard-a-yard off it you get beat.

"That will be the message going into Saturday.

"January's got to keep going. We want to win on Saturday, we'll be going there to win on Saturday.

"I was speaking to the Eastleigh manager on Saturday and we were talking about how financially strong the National League North is.

"Nobody needs to tell me how tough it's going to be on Saturday. I want to come out on the right side of that result.

"I'll be putting a team out that wants to win on Saturday."

Striker Matty Stenson is expected to come back into the squad, having been rested in midweek.

"I thought it would just be too much for him, two games in four days," Wild said.

"We've finally got him back, why would we flog him now.

"We just need to utilise the squad appropriately and make sure we're getting the best out of all the players."

Stenson was replaced in the side against Grimsby by Jamie Allen.

"Some would say 'why have you played Billy there (on the right) and Allen down the middle (against Grimsby), but I just felt that Jamie had had another half-day's training and it's probably less work playing down the middle that it is off the sides," Wild said.

"If Jamie Allen tucks you in and spins you, you're gone. I was hoping that would happen, and in some bits, it did."

One player not involved will be attacking midfielder Harvey Gilmour, who is set for a month on the sidelines.

"In training last Thursday he just stretched for a ball and pulled his abductor, which is disappointing for him as he's just got himself back in the side, so I'm gutted for him," Wild said.

"He'll come back stronger and be ready to go."

Wild says work is ongoing over adding to his squad.

"We're trying, we're hopeful that we're getting closer, but until I get over the line nothing's concrete," he said.

"We'll keep plugging away and hopefully have some news in the coming days."

Striker Gerry McDonagh is set to return to full training next week, said Wild, while winger Dom Tear's loan at Buxton expired on Wednesday, with news on his future set to be announced later this week.

On loanee Jamie Cooke, Wild said: "He's doing really well, there's some really good reports coming back from Curzon.

"So the plan's working for him."