MATCH REPORT | Yeovil Town – FC Halifax Town

Yeovil Town fell to a cruel defeat against FC Halifax Town on Bank Holiday Monday.

A first half penalty claimed the lead for the play-off chasing visitors, but Town will feel hard done by not to leave with something, having multiple seemingly blatant penalty shouts waved away.

Two late goals added shine to a result which ultimately flattered FC Halifax Town.

Darren Sarll made just one change to the Yeovil Town side which beat Wealdstone on Saturday afternoon. 

Adam Smith kept his place in goal, whilst Michael Kelly, Albi Skendi, Billy Sass-Davies, and captain Carl Dickinson started in defence.

After picking up a yellow card on Saturday, Charlie Lee took his total to ten meaning and sat out against the Shaymen. This saw a return of the midfield diamond, comprising of Jimmy Smith, Tom Knowles, Josh Neufville and Chris Dagnall.

Reuben Reid returned to the starting side to partner Joe Quigley. There was also a first squad inclusion for Toby Stephens who started on the bench. 

Despite coming into the game full of confidence, it was difficult for either side to play any resemblance of fluid football due to the intense wind carrying the ball across the Huish Park pitch.

This meant Town were limited to shots from distance in the opening 45 minutes, with Reid going closest with his first-time effort in the 6th minute.

The one-dimension nature of the game was highlighted in Halifax’s opener, after Tom Bradbury sent through Billy Chadwick in the left channel, the forward got the wrong side of Skendi to earn a penalty which Luke Summerfield calmly dispatched.

Despite their lead, Halifax were penned in their half, with little they could do about it due to the ball catching in the wind every time it was cleared forward.

However, this also made Town’s afternoon difficult, with the visitors dropping so deep that routes in behind were almost impossible to find, despite driving runs from the likes of Neufville and Knowles.

At the break it was hard to say who deserved the lead, but Halifax were the ones who held it.

After a poor first half on the footballing front, the second was certainly a better watch, with Town on the hunt for an equaliser.

Just two minutes into the half, Reid smashed an effort against the post from around 25-yards out, setting the tone for the half to come.

Knowles was his typical dangerous self from dead ball situations, going agonisingly close twice in the second half, forcing an excellent stop from Sam Johnson with his second effort.

The ball was just a matter of inches away from Yeovil being level in the 60th minute, as Dagnall failed to turn the ball home after it broke through to him following Quigley’s flicked header.

As the half entered it’s closing stages, Town were denied two seemingly clear-cut penalties, the first on Quigley as he was dragged down in the box following a corner, yet the referee was unmoved.

However, the second decision was by far the worst, as Reid broke beyond his marker, the forward was hauled down with no attempt to win the ball, yet once again the referee waved play on. To add salt to the wound, Halifax then went up the other end to double their advantage through Kieran Green.

In the dying embers of the affair, the visitors added a third as substitute Alex Bradley misjudged his header, sending the ball through to Jake Hyde to complete the visitor’s effective afternoon.

Despite the comfortable score line, the game was far from that for FC Halifax Town, as Yeovil will leave Huish Park scratching their heads as to how they’ve walked away comfortably beaten.

Yeovil Town: A.Smith; Dickinson, Sass-Davies, Skendi (Hunt), Kelly; J.Smith (Bradley), Neufville, Knowles, Dagnall (Sonupe); Quigley, Reid.

Bookings: Skendi, Dickinson, Reid, J.Smith.

Subs not used: Bradley, Hunt, Stephens