Yeovil Town 1-0 FC Halifax Town: Shaymen pay the penalty for poor display

Joe Quigley's fourth goal in four games saw FC Halifax Town lose a poor game 1-0 at Yeovil.

Saturday, 4th September 2021, 7:14 pm
Updated Saturday, 4th September 2021, 7:16 pm
Yeovil v Halifax

Town had the eyes of the country on them in their tea-time kick-off, but failed to rise to the occasion in a timid, tepid display.

Yeovil weren't a million miles better, but were hungrier, and what they - and the game - lacked in quality, they made up for in discipline and hard work.

Jack Senior's shoulder injury meant a debut for Tyrell Warren, with Jesse Debrah's return seeing a switch to 3-4-3.

Town gifted possession to dangerman Quigley a few minutes in, but after bursting towards the edge of the box, the striker's weak shot was easily saved.

As an indicator of what was to follow, it was fairly accurate.

The Shaymen were also giving away too many free-kicks within crossing distance, from which Yeovil's Luke Wilkinson headed over and then a shot was blocked after some penalty box pinball.

And Yeovil's early pressure was rewarded when, after Tom Knowles appeared to be caught by Niall Maher, Quigley smashed the ball in from the spot.

It wasn't clicking for Town at the other end, with Matty Warburton's passing not finding his team-mates against his former club, and Halifax not keeping the ball for any sustained length of time.

The hosts looked a threat every time they delivered a set-piece into the Town box, but gradually, open play became more even as Halifax got a footing in the contest.

Billy Waters was lively for Town, full of running, getting between the lines and trying to push his side upfield.

Jay Benn was also decent down the right flank, but overall, The Shaymen were a shadow of the side that swept aside Altrincham on Monday; disjointed, disrupted and off the pace.

Yeovil hadn't been brilliant, but had more thrust about their play, moving the ball quicker and more effectively.

Set-pieces and long-throws were their main threat, although Charlie Wakefield's cross required a hooked clearance from Debrah in-front of goal as Town limped towards the interval and the chance to start again.

It had been a pretty poor spectacle - there were far more entertaining National League clashes BT Sport could have picked on the day - but Halifax had got what they deserved from a forgettable first-half.

Warren had done alright on the left-flank, competed well and worked hard, but it was difficult for him to do much else in such an underwhelming team performance.

Jordan Slew, playing through the middle as he had at Woking, saw precious little of the ball high up the pitch, while Luke Summerfield and Martin Woods were unable to wrestle much control of the match in midfield.

The start to the second-half hinted at an improvement, with a bit more attacking intent and aggression to Town's play, and a Debrah glancing header wide.

After former Town man Josh Staunton was booked for a late tackle on Benn, Summerfield’s free kick was saved by Grant Smith - his first save of the game - before the follow up was blocked and the third shot was blazed over from the edge of the box.

Woods was needed to deflect Wilkinson's shot over the bar though - a second goal, even before the hour mark, would probably have been decisive.

An untidiness remained to Town's game, with Summerfield and Benn needlessly losing the ball within minutes of each other; Summerfield was withdrawn soon afterwards, an off day for the midfielder, mirroring his team.

Town soon switched to four at the back, and looked better for it, and by the midway point of the second-half, were starting to be the more dominant side, but still lacked the creativity and ingenuity to craft an equaliser.

Benn was energetic and fearless down the right, while Kieran Green added some energy to midfield, but the Yeovil keeper remained grossly under-worked.

Town huffed and puffed, but got nowhere, while in added time, Pete Wild was sent-off by referee Thomas Parsons.

The only thing of note the Town manager missed was substitute Adi Yussuf missing a chance to make it 2-0.

Yeovil: Smith, Moss, Wilkinson, Hunt, Barnett, Staunton, Gorman, Lo-Everton, (Yussuf 85) Wakefield, Knowles (Bradley 90), Quigley. Subs not used: Evans, Williams, Stephens.

Scorer: Quigley (15)

Shots on target: 6

Shots off target: 7

Corners: 6

Halifax: Johnson, Debrah, Maher, Bradbury, Benn, Woods, Summerfield (Green 64), Warren (Gilmour 67), Warburton, Waters (Allen 83), Slew. Subs not used: Spence, Swaby-Neavin

Shots on target: 2

Shots off target: 5

Corners: 6

Referee: Thomas Parsons

Attendance: 1,899 (54 away fans)

Town man of the match: Jay Benn continued his impressive start to the season with a good performance down the right, not afraid to push forward and confident on the ball.