Bromley 2-2 FC Halifax Town

editorial image

Jordan Preston’s stoppage time header rescued a point for FC Halifax Town as they twice battled back from behind to draw 2-2 at Bromley.

George Porter’s spectacular goal looked to have won it for the hosts, but Preston popped up to head in the superb Ryan Sellers’ cross in added time.

Josh Staunton made a welcome return from injury off the bench with an equaliser to cancel out Frankie Sutherland’s first-half opener after his penalty had been saved.

The Shaymen were below-par on the day but lacked nothing in fighting spirit and determination to twice come from behind.

Bromley may feel hard done-by to be denied the win at the death, but Town once again defended with resilience. If they can ally that with better quality going forward, they will surely end their seven-game winless run.

New signing Kyle Wootton was on the bench, although Matty Kosylo wasn’t included in the squad after his one-game suspension was extended for another two matches.

Town could count themselves unfortunate to be behind when Sutherland smashed home the rebound after his penalty had been tipped onto the post superbly by Sam Johnson.

Prior to that, The Shaymen had begun confidently and purposefully, pushing Bromley back and playing on the front foot.

Bromley should have been ahead already on chances created but captain Jack Holland headed a corner over from three yards after rising high at the far post.

However, the hosts’ penalty, for an alleged foul by Nathan Clarke on the impressive Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe, came after Town were denied their own spot-kick when appeals that Sanmi Odelusi had been dragged down inside the area were waved away.

Dayle Southwell had a chance to level but could only divert Ryan Sellers’ drilled cross over, while Jordan Preston had earlier seen his deflected cross hit the top of the bar.

Another drilled cross by Sellers, after another good run by the full-back, was nodded over by Jonathan Edwards, as Town sought to attack down the sides of the physically imposing Bromley back-line.

The excellent Sellers fired off target after cutting in on his right foot, but Town were less of a threat as the first-half went on, with any long balls towards Edwards gobbled up by the Bromley defence.

By half-time, Town had failed to test rookie keeper Max Huxter, making his Bromley debut, with a shot on target.

Jamie Fullarton rued his side’s lack of quality in the final third after the Fylde game, and it was the same story here.

Defensively, The Shaymen had given little away but the penalty and Holland’s early chance, and had been more like the home side in terms of possession, but just didn’t do enough with it.

The attacking quartet of Edwards, Preston, Odelusi and Southwell didn’t offer enough of a threat; the incisive inter-play and movement Town have produced at times from those positions wasn’t on show.

But, from Simon Lenighan’s hopeful pass forward, Bromley needlessly conceded a corner, and from that, a floated cross from the right was met with a cushioned header by Staunton at the back post.

Juan Luque had squandered a good chance for the hosts before then when Clarke’s clearance fell to him just inside the box.

It might not have been a performance of quality, but there was plenty of commitment to the cause from The Shaymen, as Sellers and Staunton produced brave blocks to keep Bromley at bay, with both sides working hard but neither seeming to require the finesse or flair to outsmart the other.

Porter had a free header with 15 minutes to go, but his tame effort was straight at Johnson.

Town were then on the ropes as Sellers cleared off the line from Uzokwe, before Johnson spilled a header back across goal, requiring a scrambled clearance.

Bromley were in the ascendancy now, and their pressure told when Sutherland’s magnificent pass behind the Town defence played in Porter, who produced a stunning volley across goal.

But Town rallied again with some late pressure of their own, and Preston’s late leveller earned a hard-fought share of the spoils.

Bromley: Huxter, Okoye, Holland, Rooney, Wood (Taylor 46), Sutherland, Porter, Higgs, Ogedi-Uzokwe, Luque (De Silva 90), Bugiel (Meekums 31). Subs not used: Johnson.

Scorers: Sutherland (14), Porter (82)

Shots on target: 5

Shots off target: 9

Corners:6

Halifax: Johnson, Hanson, Clarke, Maher (Staunton 24), Sellers, Lenighan, Berrett, Odelusi, Southwell (Wootton 71), Preston, Edwards. Subs not used: Rowley, Duckworth, King.

Scorers: Staunton (60), Preston (90)

Shots on target: 2

Shots off target: 3

Corners:10

Attendance: 1,143

Referee: Sam Purkiss

Town man of the match: Ryan Sellers