FC Halifax Town: Wild calls on Shaymen to “show we can live with the best teams in this league” against Stockport

Town manager Pete Wild says all the pressure is on Stockport in Saturday’s promotion six-pointer at The Shay.

By Tom Scargill
Thursday, 29th April 2021, 9:22 am
Halifax v Maidenhead, The Shay, Saturday, January 30, 2021. Photo: Marcus Branston. Pete Wild
Halifax v Maidenhead, The Shay, Saturday, January 30, 2021. Photo: Marcus Branston. Pete Wild

Both sides have plenty riding on the game, with Town looking to take another step towards a top-seven finish, while Stockport are chasing a top three finish, which would guarantee them a pass into the play-off semi-finals, while they have an outside chance of finishing top, trailing leaders Torquay by five points.

“Stockport have got some fantastic players,” Wild said.

“The boot’s on the other foot on Saturday, where they’ve got to come and beat us, we’ve got to go out and express ourselves and go and show we can live with the best teams in this league.

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“We’ve done that on many occasions this year, we’ll have to do that again on Saturday.

“But what an exciting opportunity, where the pressure’s on them, not us.

“That brings its own challenges. They’re living up to the pressure at the moment, let’s see what they bring to the party when they come here on Saturday.”

County come into the game having won 4-0 at King’s Lynn on Tuesday, extending their unbeaten run to 12 games.

They have won five of their last six away games, keeping four clean sheets in the process.

When asked how he will approach the game, Wild said: “That’s for me to worry about.

“We went toe-to-toe with them at their place, and I’ll need to decide what formation, what team and how tactically I want to play.

“I don’t think there’s any pressure on us on Saturday. Everybody expects Stockport to roll up here, turn us over, get back on the bus and go home.

“So anything we get on Saturday is a bonus. Everybody in the league will be going ‘well Halifax will get beat on Saturday so we’ll make points back up on them’, so we’ve got to go and prove them wrong.

“What a fantastic position to be in, to go and prove people wrong.

“I’m excited for the weekend to go toe-to-toe with one of the best sides in the league, and I’m excited to see what we can bring to the table.”

Stockport have scored 16 goals in their last five matches, and are the joint highest scorers in the National League.

But Wild isn’t fazed by the Hatters’ impressive form.

“It’s 11 versus 11, they’ve all got two arms and two legs,” he said.

“We’ve just got to match them, that’s how you play against them, match them, deny them opportunities, have a little bit of luck along the way and take your chances when they come, because you’ll always get a chance in 90 minutes.”

Wild admits Town will need to play better than they did in Tuesday’s 1-0 win over Woking if they are to get a result on Saturday.

“Yes we do, but if we took half the chances we create in games, we wouldn’t be as nervy,” he said.

“So I think what we need to do is start taking our chances, which means that we get a foothold in games better.

“But what a fantastic two months the players and the staff have had, and they deserve immense credit for that.”

On midfielder Jack Earing’s chances of recovering from his hamstring problem in time for the game, Wild said: “It’ll be 50-50, he trained well on Tuesday.

“We need top assess him on Thursday morning. If he’s out running Thursday morning then we have a chance, if he’s not, we haven’t.”