FC Halifax Town 1-4 Maidenhead: We defended woefully, laments Town boss Heath after Trophy exit

Actions from FC Halifax Town v Maidenhead, FA Trophy match, at the MBI Shay Stadium
Actions from FC Halifax Town v Maidenhead, FA Trophy match, at the MBI Shay Stadium

Town boss Billy Heath branded his team’s defending as “woeful” after they crashed out of the FA Trophy 4-1 at home to Maidenhead on Saturday.

Halifax charged into a 1-0 lead within the first minute through Matty Kosylo but capitulated after the interval, conceding three second-half goals.

“I thought we played really well in the first-half and we should have been 3-0 up,” said Heath.

“We scored the goal after 30 seconds, which got us in the right place. We said ‘let’s start fast’ and we did.

“Then we had two really good chances to finish the game. Hibbsy’s had a good one, and then Garner’s header from a great ball in.

“Then they get the goal right on half-time, which is just so disappointing after they’d not really been in the game. They had bits and pieces.

“You’re always disappointed to go out. I thought that if we could get past this round then you start thinking how far can we go, but it wasn’t to be.

“But it’s difficult when you only have 14 first-team players to pick from.”

“The biggest disappointment of the day was the three we conceded after half-time because they were poor, poor goals.”

Asked what he put that down to, Heath said: “Frustration for what was happening on the pitch. A lack of concentration.

“We said after the game that regardless of what;s going on on the pitch, we’ve got to concentrate better.

“We shouldn’t get thrown out of a game by what’s going on on the pitch in another quarter. Nothing to do with Maidenhead - it’s from other aspects of the game.”

Referee Ryan Johnson was public enemy number one inside The Shay with an awful display, turning down two strong shouts for Halifax penalties while awarding Maidenhead a debatable spot-kick, as well as generally poor decision-making throughout.

“It’s a big body blow when you’ve dominated the first-half so much,” Heath said, “but to concede so early after half-time was disappointing.

“But we let a certain person throw our concentration levels and that’s what we’ve got to get better at.

“You can go on forever. I think we had four players booked and it wasn’t that type of game.

“He was just so poor. And it’s so frustrating for everyone to watch. You’ve got two teams that have come to play football, it’s not an overly-physical game but he’s spoilt a perfectly good game of football.

“I just despair at times.

“The referee wasn’t at fault for three of the goals we conceded. We defended woefully second-half.

“But it creates frustration constantly because it was such an inept display. And you have to be better than that, keep your concentration and not let him throw you out of the game, and that’s what he did.

“I’ve been in the game 18, 19 years and it’s probably the most inept display of refereeing I’ve ever seen at every level.

“He was so poor it was frightening.”

On the recent departure of striker Adam Morgan, who joined Sligo Rovers last week, Heath added: “Morgs wanted to play every game - he came to us a couple of weeks ago and said he wanted to play every game, which is not something we could envisage week in, week out.

“He’s moved on, but he’s a great lad. He has his troubles but he’s a good lad and we wish him well.”