Woking 1-3 FC Halifax Town

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FC Halifax Town moved eight points clear of the National League relegation zone thanks to a 3-1 win at Woking - Jamie Fullarton’s first victory in charge.

Matty Kosylo scored twice while winger Connor Thomson marked his debut with a goal to seal only Halifax’s fourth away league win of the campaign - against a team with the third best home record in the division.

Combined with Solihull’s defeat at high-flying Sutton, the result puts Town in a commanding position to go on and secure their fifth-tier status with 10 games remaining.

And if they continue to play like this, that shouldn’t be a problem.

The signings of free-agent Thomson and Northampton left-back Raheem Hanley, on loan, before the game was further evidence of the changes being implemented by Fullarton, with a quarter of the squad having arrived since Billy Heath’s departure, plus the fact that Heath favourite Tom Denton was again only a substitute.

Scott McManus saw an early long-range shot kept out by Nathan Baxter as Town started more comfortably than their hosts, who seemed a little inhibited by their form of only two wins from their last 18 games.

Fondop-Talom, preferred to Denton, was well supported by Kosylo, the hard-working Ben Tomlinson and Jake Hibbs, with Town not afraid to push players forward at the right times.

Jason Banton was given too much space to cut in from the left on his right-foot and curl a shot narrowly over from 20 yards, but the hosts struggled to impose themselves any further until they were a goal down.

Just after half-an-hour had gone, Kosylo scored from the spot after a dazzling run was brought to a premature end inside the penalty area; Halifax undoubtedly deserved their lead, having been aggressive in the tackle, industrious and adventurous.

But Woking responded well to falling behind, forcing Fondop-Talom into a goal-line clearance five minutes before half-time after Sam Johnson had missed claiming a corner.

Regan Charles-Cook, Woking’s best player, then found space on the right before his low shot was deflected into the side-netting.

Johnson then produced a brilliant save to tip Charles-Cook’s shot across goal behind.

When the half-time whistle sounded, Town were glad to hear it.

But Woking picked up where they left off as Charles-Cook’s cross-shot was diverted in by substitute Charlie Carter, with Halifax left protesting in vain he was offside.

The relief from the hosts was palpable, but they failed to build any momentum after equalising, and Town regained the lead in magnificent fashion when Kosylo rifled in a stunning shot high across goal to the right of the box from an acute angle.

The Shaymen were now back where they wanted to be, defending a lead and asking Woking if they had enough to break them down. The answer was no, with Fullarton’s side resolute at the back as debutant Niall Maher slotted in seamlessly alongside the excellent Matty Brown.

But Town had enough to put the game out of reach as Hanley picked out Michael Duckworth, whose cross was nodded in by substitute Thomson.

Woking: Baxter, Young, Orlu, Jones (Carter 7), Staunton, Ralph, Ferdinand, Banton (Edwards 72), Cook (Saravia 81), Charles-Cook, Grego-Cox. Subs not used: Wynter, Mason.

Scorer: Carter (50)

Shots on target: 7

Shots off target: 10

Corners: 10

Halifax: Johnson, Duckworth, Brown, Maher, McManus, Tomlinson, Collins, Hotte, Hibbs (Hanley 61), Kosylo (Oliver 86), Fondop-Talom (Thomson 73). Subs not used: Nicholson, Denton.

Scorers: Kosylo (33, 66), Thomson (81)

Shots on target: 6

Shots off target: 1

Corners: 1

Attendance: 1,619

Referee: Adam Penwell

Town man of the match: Matty Kosylo