Halifax 3 Imps 2: Red Imps in Refs Red Mist Tragedy Again!

FC Halifax Town and Lincoln City played out a 3-2 thriller, boasting quality and a passion played out in a none too shabby theatre that possessed the X Factor to be top of the bill in any Royal Variety Performance. The part-timers and poorly paid Thespians put on one hell of a show, but alas one would steel it and thus tip the scales of justice when three points and, perhaps even pints and trebles, all round would have been more apt an act as the final curtain fell. For the Shaymen the blue Tsunami continues to wash away all before them, but for the unlucky Imps, who deserved better than to be thrown on the rocks, this was the Great Shay Robbery thanks to Mr Joyce, a referee who rewrote the script turning a heroic away day into a Shakespearian tragedy. It may not have been a thousand ships, but, for the  475 who sailed and flew the Imps flag, this was a day to be proud of.

Thanks for reading Neil Gentleman-Hobbs

First the teams & schemes, then the match report and finally more stats than you can shake a Shayman or Imp at.

Club logo  3-2   Lincoln city (2014).png

Monday 25th August KO 3PM
H/T 2-1
Scorers 10 Bencherif, 29 Roberts, 45 Boden (Pen), 50 Tomlinson (Pen), 76 Williams
Attendance 2369   (1894 Shaymen 475 Imps)
Ref Mr Joyce

 Teams & schemes

Club logo

Aspin goes 4-2-1-2-1
27 Glennon
2 Bolton (Y) 4 M Roberts 14 Williams 3 McManus
5 Pearson 20 Maynard
8 Marshall
 7 Smith           12 Peniket
19 Boden 

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11 Tomlinson (Y)  5 Bencherif (2Y=R)  8 Power
14 Nolan 12 Mendy (Y)
3 Newton (Y)  6 Diagne (Y)  23 Brown  17 Caprice
26 Townsend
Simmo goes 4-2-3-1

Lincoln city (2014).png

 Subs & substitutions

The Shaymen Bench:  1 Senior, 6 Ainge, 15 K Roberts, 9 Jackson, 22 Schofield
Substitutions: 53′ Schofield on for Smith, 68′ Jackson on for Marshall
The Imps Bench: 1 Farman, 7 Kabba, 16 Robinson, 10 Leadsham, 22 Marshall
Substitutions:  78 D/S Marshall on for  Power & Ledsham on for Nolan, 84 Kabba on for Burrow.

To the game fellow football fans to the game…………

Confident top-dogs and hosts Halifax, as expected, force the early pressure almost breaking through the red velvet curtain before she rises. Bowman Roberts long throw is cleared by Newton. Hamza Bencherif, a man possessed, the Moor very much Othello personified, given the premature death of his former team and room-mate; is everywhere but alas,over-hits a pass as the Imps counter. Tomlinson and Burrow, who can suck blood from a stone more efficiently than any Shylock, cannot reach it . Diagne clears after a Mendy miss-header causes commotion in the Imps box, courtesy of Roberts latest javelin.  Good work from Halifax’ incurable romantic, Marshall, finds Peniket but his 20 yard drive goes wide.

It’s a veritable see-saw between two in-form sides reasoning fortune shall favour the brave.  A great ball from Hamza is only half cleared but Power is crowded out and then Brown heads clear a dangerous ball from former Imp Smith,  a pantomime villain perhaps, but in full flow he is at times Romeo rather than a Romario.  There is a man with a point or three to prove one thinks, having enjoyed his better days at Lincoln away from home. The Red Imps part the blue sea after some hard work by Burrow as our hospitable Halifax hosts let the ball bounce in the box.  Williams attempts to clear but the ball cannons off Hamza Bencherif’s back and loops over the keeper for a sensational smash and grab lead. A comedy of errors makes much ado about nothing.

A Tomlinson sliding challenge earns him a yellow for a poor challenge on Marshall putting together a sonnet of a sortie. Midfield metronome and matador Marshall takes the free-kick, Williams rises supreme and Townsend magnificently claws over the bar.  Smith’s corner is cleared but Mendy’s timely hoof asks a lot of Power who cannot profit as the lively encounter continues. Both sides, to their credit are getting the ball down and playing some passing football. Townsend makes another terrific save from a Maynard drive, although Smith is given off-side.

A three man Lincoln move sees a quality threaded ball from Nolan to Power but he asks a lot of Tomlinson and, three slick passes later, the ball is back in the Imps box only for Mendy to pick Peniket’s pocket.  Roberts throw – he would have shone at Agincourt –  is headed away only for Maynard to find Williams, who beats Bencherif and shoots just wide. The cat, Townsend, is  alert but pawing air.

A Marshall free-kick forces Townsend to palm against the bar. The pressure is building. Smith roasts Newton, whips in a cross, but, amidst the melee Mendy cannot stop Roberts from pouncing to fire home his third of the season into the top left. Even-Stevens and game on in this top of the table thriller.  Smith is really out to prove a point and at his best. He dances along the Lincoln back four, but, on his weaker left foot, shoots wide.

Mendy charges down a shot from Maynard then Smith, the star of the half, turns Diagne to play in Maynard. He shoots only to see Townsend brilliantly palm for a corner.  Power gets away with a ball to hand with the Shaymen faithful screaming for blood as the seemingly relentless Halifax pressure forces a series of corners as Diage, Brown and team Lincoln stand firm.  The Imps stand firm and to our credit have a couple of chances. Power cutely plays in Tomlinson who, leaning back,  shoots high and wide. Tomlinson gets in Hamza but Maynard brilliantly gets a foot in for Glennon to kill any danger.

Two heart in mouth moments. Tomlinson, already on a yellow,  fouls former Imp Pearson. Brown then looks beaten by Boden, but recovers to even win the throw. Its blood and thunder and a terrific advert for the game, before heartbreak strikes. Having escaped a ball to hand earlier with Power, the same happens with Diagne and this time it’s a  penalty! Marshall shoots calmly into the bottom right corner, Townsend guesses correctly but it is just to good. The cock-a-hoop hosts go in at the interval with a 2-1 lead.

Second half

A good move twice featuring Burrow finds Newton, he delivers to Mendy who fluffs his lines with a cross-come-shot.  Halifax go straight down the middle, Maynard feeds Boden and, one on one his shot is brilliantly denied by Townsend. The Imps weather the pressure and sods law hit back. Power puts Tomlinson away, only for Bolton to bring him down for another penalty and a caution for his troubles. Tomlinson thumps home into the corner with aplomb!  A great Newton ball finds Burrow but his drive hits the post.

Schofield comes on for Smith,  but the Imps are playing the football with Caprice seemingly being given the freedom of the Pennines.  His cross finds the head of Burrow,  alas it whistles a foot over the bar.  Power skips two and delivers a peach, Hamza rises, only for his header to go just the wrong side of the left-hand post.  The Imp and Shaymen hordes are on their  Caprice does brilliantly as Halifax get over the penalty equaliser and counter.

Tomlinson forces a parry from Glennon, who dives on the rebound with Tommo smelling the kill.  Bencherif, having talked himself into his first yellow, earns a second when he catches in a harmless tussle with Maynard.  Glennon just beats Burrow in a one on one, whilst within the eyeline you can see the Imps managerial duo,  Simmo and Grant Brown, still remonstrating at the sending off.  Jackson replaces Marshall before both sides continue to win a  game now littered with fouls.  Mendy gets a yellow for a poor one on McManus.

Pearson has a long range dig that deflects off Mendy who has been tireless again.  Jackson’s introduction, however,  is an inspired one and, somewhat harsh on Townsend. The keeper spills the cross only for Steve Williams to head home straight down the middle.  Simmo goes for broke making a double substitution with Marcus Marshall replaings Alan Power and Karl Ledsham on for Jon Nolan.  Peniket seems to make the most of the Imps charge of the Light Brigade until he shoots wide. Caprice still eager to get forward has an effort blockedfor a corner.  Marshallalmost makes an imediate impact himself as he fires the half-cleared corner back in only for Glennon to make a vital save.

The game is end to end again and worryingly open from a defensive point of view.  Kabba plays in Tomlinson who gets beyond his two markers and looks away until he is forced wide of the keeper and beaten by the angle for a goal kick. Newton is then forced to take a yellow for the team with Peniket about to put things beyond any doubt.  Townsend finally caps a terrific performance with a top drawer save from a Boden pile-driver from twenty yards.

Three-two and another harsh red was tough on the Imps but fair play to Halifax. Certainly the strongest squad in the division, with quality options and endeavour all over the park.  As for fifth-placed Lincoln, with a bit more luck on the officials front, this side looks as if it will be there or thereabouts.


Stats & Table

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Note: shots on includes  goals and saves includes crosses claimed


Club logo   V  Lincoln city (2014).png

50 % Ball 50 %
10 Shots on 9
8 Misses 7
5 Saves 6
8 Corners 3
3 Offside 4
 10 Fouls 15
1 Yellows 5
0  Reds 1

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The Table

  P W D L F A +/- Pts
1 FC Halifax Town 5 5 0 0 13 3 +10 15
2 Barnet 5 4 0 1 14 2 +12 12
3 Forest Green Rovers 5 3 2 0 7 3 +4 11
4 Eastleigh 5 3 1 1 10 5 +5 10
5 Lincoln City 5 3 1 1 9 7 +2 10
6 Gateshead 5 3 1 1 10 9 +1 10
7 Wrexham 5 3 1 1 8 8 0 10
8 Grimsby Town 5 2 3 0 14 2 +12 9
9 Woking 5 2 3 0 11 4 +7 9
10 Kidderminster Harriers 5 2 3 0 6 2 +4 9
11 Macclesfield Town 5 2 3 0 6 4 +2 9
12 Aldershot Town 5 2 2 1 7 4 +3 8
13 Braintree Town 5 2 0 3 8 7 +1 6
14 Torquay United 5 1 3 1 5 4 +1 6
15 Southport 5 1 2 2 6 8 -2 5
16 Bristol Rovers 5 1 2 2 3 5 -2 5
17 Chester 5 1 1 3 6 13 -7 4
18 Dover Athletic 5 1 1 3 4 12 -8 4
19 Altrincham 5 1 0 4 5 9 -4 3
20 AFC Telford United 5 0 2 3 6 10 -4 2
21 Dartford 5 0 2 3 2 8 -6 2
22 Welling United 5 0 2 3 3 11 -8 2
23 Nuneaton Town 5 0 1 4 0 8 -8 1
24 Alfreton Town 5 0 0 5 3 18 -15 0

Posted on August 25, 2014, in A View From The Stacey West by Neil Gentleman-Hobbs & Match Reports, All the Formations: The Teams & schemes, Archive Match reports, Uncategorized, Writers - Neil Gentleman-Hobbs and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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