Shaymen again left to rue missed chances in goalless draw at Gateshead

FC Halifax Town again squandered some good chances as they drew 0-0 at Gateshead.
Gateshead International Stadium.  (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)Gateshead International Stadium.  (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
Gateshead International Stadium. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Again, like at Dorking, Town couldn't say they hadn't had enough chances to win it and could count themselves unfortunate to come away with just a point.

But the continuing story of the season shows no sign of altering, with the thrashing of Wealdstone looking an odd anomaly among the wasted opportunities.

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Gateshead hadn't kept a clean sheet at home all season, in 18 games, but have now.

Town did at least extend their unbeaten run to three games for the first time this year and have now kept three clean sheets in a row for the first time since October 2021.

But they should have won it.

There were early efforts by Ed Francis and Dan Ward for Gateshead against a shaky-looking Town defence, with the hosts in the ascendancy.

Gateshead had started better and brighter, moving the ball smoothly going forward, with Halifax too passive.

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Like at Dorking, Town were winning the ball high up the pitch on occasion, but failed to take advantage, while at the back, Gateshead were finding it too easy to cut through them.

But after the hosts' initial attacking forays, their threat disappeared, with Halifax growing into the half.

A free-kick was glanced wide by Milli Alli, who also had a fierce shot on the turn parried behind from an angle after a short corner.

The best chance yet then fell to Adam Senior - one of two in yellow unmarked from a left-wing cross - but his header was kept out by Filip Marshall. Either side of him and Town would have led.

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Gateshead ended the half with a couple of efforts at goal, but they'd got worse as it had gone on whereas Halifax, after a worrying opening period, had become more aggressive and tenacious; Harvey Gilmour epitomised that by flying into three tackles in quick succession before conceding a free kick, while Jamie Cooke had displayed his customarily voracious work-rate on the right.

Both teams' play had featured too many errors though, too many loose balls and not enough cohesive, constructive play, and neither had been sharp or incisive enough in open play.

Senior again went close with a header a few minutes after the restart when his effort was cleared off the line.

That was amid a game that was struggling to come to life though.

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Gateshead's quality of crosses from wide was awful, with the home side unable to produce any effective attacks that carried even a hint of menace.

Halifax weren't much better, also guilty of playing too far from top gear, lacking tempo and a cutting edge.

Town substitute Mani Dieseruvwe and Gateshead's Adam Campbell had efforts off target, but a goal remained about as remote a possibility as the temperatures reaching double figures.

Gateshead were trying to inject some urgency into their play but without the quality or composure to match, it had little effect.

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Halifax then wasted two more big chances when Dieseruvwe's header was saved by the keeper's legs before Alli fired over from near the penalty spot.

Shots by Callum Whelan and Alli both went wide in the final five minutes, but the scoreline remained as frozen as most of the spectators.

Gateshead: Marshall, Tinkler, Richardson, Pye, Francis, Whelan, Olley, Conteh, Ward (Martin 70), Dinanga, Campbell. Subs not used: Montgomery, Magnay, Storey, Williamson.

Shots on target: 2

Shots off target: 10

Corners: 4

Halifax: Johnson, Debrah, A Senior, Stott, Golden, Gilmour, Hunter, Capello (J Senior 61), Alli, O'Rourke (Dieseruvwe 55), Cooke. Subs not used: Warburton, Arthur, Summerfield

Shots on target: 6

Shots off target: 6

Corners: 4

Attendance: 810 (115 away)

Referee: Aaron Bannister

Town man of the match: I'll give it to Adam Senior. Harvey Gilmour and Tylor Golden also in contention, but Senior looks a real class act at the back.