Aspin admits Town were not good enough after Chester defeat

FC Halifax Town v Chester at The Shay Stadium, Halifax.
FC Halifax Town v Chester at The Shay Stadium, Halifax.

Neil Aspin conceded his side were “nowhere near” replicating their impressive performance at Gateshead after FC Halifax Town slumped to a 2-0 home defeat against Chester.

The Shaymen failed to score at home for their first time since April in a disappointing display just two days after their 2-2 draw in the North East.

The Town boss praised the efforts of around 40 volunteers who helped clear the pitch of festive snow, but admitted his team didn’t follow up that hard work with a performance.

He said: “Obviously you’re always disappointed to lose a home game, even more so not scoring.

“First I need to thank the people who helped get the game on because several people worked exceptionally hard.

“I thank them for that but we didn’t produce on the pitch which would have rewarded the hard work.

“The pitch was playable but we didn’t perform well enough, especially in the first-half, where I felt we lost the game and gave the impetus to Chester.

“We’ve got to try and get a run going again, especially if we can match this year in terms of scoring goals at home.

“It’s only the second time all year we’ve not scored at home, but I think the tale of the game was in both boxes.”

Aspin was unhappy with his team’s sluggish start to the match, in which Matt Brown headed Chester ahead after six minutes.

“I thought we were very poor in the first 15 minutes,” he said. “We needed to be on the front foot to put Chester under pressure but we gave the initiative to them.

“If you start poorly sometimes it’s very hard to lift it.

“I don’t think you can fault the players in terms of effort. In the second-half they pushed and tried their best to get back in the game.

“There were a couple of good chances but some poor finishing and we did lack a bit of quality.

“We were unfortunate that Jamie Jackson pulled him hamstring after already taking Adam Smith off, which gave us a bit of a shortage of forward players.

“Things haven’t gone for us but I’m not making excuses. We have to take it on the chin and move on.”

The Town boss said the game could have gone differently had Town got an equaliser before substitute Tom Peers sealed the win for Chester late on.

Aspin added: “I don’t know how many balls we got into the box and corners but we’ve had enough chances to score.

“I’m not going to complain too much about the second goal because you might as well lose 2-0 as 1-0.

“We had enough chances to have brought the scores level and it would have set it up for a good finish if we could’ve got back to 1-1, I would’ve fancied our chances.

“But it’s not been good enough today and we need to be better if we’re going to win games.

“The first-half at Gateshead we were excellent, it’s probably as good as we’ve played.

“We had a difficult second-half at Gateshead but today we were nowhere near the levels we played in that first-half.”

Aspin said the enforced 12-day winter break will not only give Jackson time to recover from his injury but will also present an opportunity for the Town boss to prepare for the rest of the campaign.

He added: “At least (Jamie) will not miss too many games because he gets a bit of time to get his hamstring right.

“We have to use this time to prepare for what’s going to come in the second-half of the season.

“We’ve got a lot of difficult games, a lot of big teams to come here where we’re going t be tested.

“We’ve got to improve on our away form of late and start winning some games away from home.

“The Trophy’s important as well, we’d like to do well in that so we’ve got a lot of football still to play.”