Halifax Town 1-4 Notts County (National League) 27.08.22
Where do we begin? Quite comfortably our best performance thus far this season and still so far from our best, which is the biggest compliment I can possibly give our boys considering 1-4 score line. Impressive, wasn’t it? Well, here is how we did it.
The opening thirty minutes to the first half was very close, with both sides registering many wasteful chances on goal. But when you have a forward as clinical as Macaulay Langstaff up front you can bank on them converting a half chance out of nothing and that is exactly what he did just three minutes before half-time. More exceptional work from the forever threatening Sam Austin was concluded with a delightful ball into the back post, where our number nine was on hand to direct the ball into the back of the net in front of a silent main stand full of the FC Halifax Town fans who have been starved of early joy this season if true is told.
When your partner pens his name on the scoresheet just before the break, it would simply be rude if you fail to do the same and clearly Cedwyn Scott felt the same way as he opened his league account in our colours. Now this just felt like the typical poacher’s finish. A low ball into the Shaymen’s penalty area saw our talisman put his head in where it hurts, diving almost across the floor to get his head on the end of the cross. The header was almost inch-perfect and left Town’s shot stopper with no chance at his near post.
0-2? Before half-time? Even I was left wondering if I had turned up at the correct game because it certainly is not a Notts County thing to do, we all know that.
The second half began and as expected, the hosts poised more of an attacking threat. An early succession of corners struck a slight ounce of fear into the away end because we knew about our horrid history with defending set pieces but with a couple of firm headed clearances and claims from Sam Slocombe, who was absolutely fantastic for us for that matter, the pressure found its conclusion almost immediately.
We then set back into our game, the high-press and quick break-aways and this created our third and Macaulay Langstaff’s second. Our threat ensured our opponents were pegged back and the space opened up between both of the Shaymen’s centre-halves and that for a striker like Macca is the dream. A threaded pass through and the boy was through with only the goalkeeper to beat. What did he do next? He only went on to casually sit the man down and roll the ball into the empty net before wheeling away celebrating in front of the travelling 770 from Nottingham, who like Slocombe were absolutely fantastic all afternoon.
It really did feel like game over at this point, but we all know we never like to do things easy at this Football Club. We tried to make things harder for ourselves once again here as the hosts restored a goal back courtesy of a well-worked move finished off by Harvey Gilmour for his side’s first goal of the new campaign.
However, three minutes beyond the short-lived fight back, we made it four to put the cherry on the icing of the cake. Another mistake amongst the backline of the hosts saw the ball break away to Kairo Mitchell. The boy stood the final remaining defender up before beating his man with ease and firing low and hard into the bottom corner, leaving the Town goalkeeper hopeless for the fourth time this afternoon.
A free-scoring afternoon in West Yorkshire resulted in a packed away end returning home happy with three points as the game concluded FC Halifax 1-4 Notts County.
Now this is the point where I would usually dive into the positives. But my one and only positive today is every single player and how the contributed to a solid away performance.
We all are fully aware of how the week began. If you are not sure what I am speaking about, a member of our playing squad was targeted through direct message by a so-called supporter, dishing him unnecessary abuse on his performance last weekend. This caused a huge negative stir online and it was feared that any further toxicity could and more than likely would have damaged our chances of success this season.
It would have been typical really and quite understandable if the players were off the pace at FC Halifax Town due to the events but instead it was the complete opposite. It really did look as if it sparked a lot of motivation within the team to get the three points and that was signalled by the unity in the celebrations for the four goals.
Luke Williams responded to the fans’ behaviour respectfully and in an understanding manner, emphasising that he understood the reaction at the Chesterfield game. Well, one thing is for sure is that he ensured those reactions were kept in the past and that he and his side put on a display that could only lead to smiles and it did, around 800 of them to be precise.
I could really sit here all day and continue about how great we were but by now it should be common knowledge that this team can and will continue to blow teams out the water this season if these kinds of performances are replicated on a regular basis.
Anyway, enough of this, we were pretty fantastic but still room for many improvements and maybe we will see them on Monday, in the big clash at the Lane against Solihull Moors. No rest this bank holiday weekend, we quite simply need three points and to take all six into what will be another difficult trip away at Dagenham and Redbridge next Saturday.
Let’s ensure a certain Neal Ardley does not win at our fortress and as always, Come On You Pies!
Halifax Town: Johnson, Senior, Keane, Clarke, Golden, Gilmour, Spence, Summerfield (Osawe 64), Dieseruvwe (Slew 78), Debrah, Harker (Capello 46).
Notts County: Slocombe, Chicksen, Cameron, Brindley, Baldwin, Nemane (Adebayo-Rowling 66), O’Brien, Palmer, Austin, Scott (Bajrami 60), Langstaff (Mitchell 71).
Venue: The Shay
*Article provided by K-Ci Rennicks (Notts County Correspondent).
*Main image @Official_NCFC Cedwyn Scott and Macaulay Langstaff both forund the target for the Magpies.