FA Cup 2nd round
Match report Vs FC Halifax Town Venue: Aggborough Date: 05-12-21 Att: 4296 (away fans: 860)

05-12-21 - Report - FA Cup 2nd rd - Kidderminster Harriers 2 FC Halifax Town 0

Harriers put paid to Halifax in the FA Cup

Report: Harriershane

The day had finally arrived.

The FA Cup Second Round, a rare Sunday game for the Harriers and a chance to potentially cash in with progression to the Third Round. The Gods had opted to hand us higher rated opposition, and ones who were in form at that – FC Halifax Town are sat in third place in the National League as they made the long trip south looking to get into the Third Round for the first time since reformation.

Russ Penn was able to recall the likes of Geraldo Bajrami and Mark Carrington after they were rested in last week’s FA Trophy penalty shoot out win over Hereford FC. The stands were packed and the atmosphere building to the point where the tannoy system was barely audible.

Buoyed by that atmosphere the Harriers made the perfect start as Amari Morgan-Smith held the ball up in the channels and fed Ashley Hemmings. Morgan-Smith continued his run into the box and Hemmings found him with a low, drilled cross which the striker did ever so well to turn goalwards by opening his foot and steering the ball past Sam Johnson. Stephen Warnock and Ashley Williams were full of praise later on Match of the Day, and rightly so.

The first sight of goal for the visitors came with thirteen minutes played, as the dangerous Jordan Slew curling an effort comfortably over the bar. A few minutes later Harriers were in dreamland as Hemmings turned goalscorer.

Sam Austin’s excellent work allowed Omari Sterling-James to get on the ball wide left before curling a teasing ball in which was only half cleared by Jack Senior. Caleb Richards was alive to the potential of the chance and nodded the ball back across goal where Hemmings was waiting. The winger needed to apply a smart touch to get to the ball before unleashing a powerful effort on the turn which rifled past Johnson, giving him no chance.

The Harriers were comfortably the better of the two sides, barely giving their visitors a sight of goal and winning every battle and contested ball. We were dangerous from corners and Johnson had to be alive to a couple of curling Sterling-James corners before he had an effort at goal himself; Johnson alive to the danger on both occasions.

Harriers almost made it three just before the break with what would have been a typical Sam Austin strike. Picking the ball up twenty five yards from goal, and in space, he went for a curling effort but Johnson was again equal to it.

HT: 2 – 0

Surely with a flea in their ear from their manager, Pete Wild, it shouldn’t have been a surprise that The Shaymen were looking to start the half quickly and, although they appeared brighter, the Harriers were still unwilling to be threatened by the possession that the visitors enjoyed.

Defending stoutly, Harriers absorbed the pressure until the moves inevitably died out. Wild rung the changes, looking for a spark to change his sides fortunes, but the Reds simply refused to budge.

With sixty nine minutes played it was almost 3-0 and what a goal it would have been too. With the ball breaking free around twenty five yards from goal Elliott Bonds had to be clever to get to the ball first which he did so with an excellent turn before firing a low shot that clipped the post as it slipped just wide of the post. It would have been a fine way to get his first goal for the club.

Ever more desperate Halifax continued to increase the directness of their play and made a few more changes, but the defensive unit – Nathan Cameron and Geraldo Bajrami in particular – refused to sway in the wind. As Halifax committed more men forward the game became more open but it was Harriers who always appeared the more likely to grab the game’s third goal; Sterling again having a pair of efforts thwarted.

After a brief interlude for objects being thrown on the pitch by the Halifax fans behind Luke Simpson’s goal, Harriers managed the final five minutes of the game with relative ease.

All that remains now is to answer that burning question: “Who do you want?” Those who listen to BBC 606 may have heard a familiar voice (No. Give up. Ed) answering that very question on the airwaves. A top six club would be the dream but any Premier League side away from home has to be the dream, doesn’t it?

I’m going with Nathan Cameron as my MotM choice but really it could’ve been absolutely everybody in red on that pitch today. An excellent day for our football club.

FT: 2 – 0

Goals for Harriers: Morgan-Smith 2, Hemmings 16

The Harriers Online MotM is: Nathan Cameron

Talk about the game here

Latest table and stats here

Harriers Goals Subs Time Cards
FC Halifax Town Goals Subs Time Cards
Debrah   46  
Spence   68
Slew   84  
Warburton   58  
Waters   58  
Bradbury   46  
Woods   68  
Summerfield   58  
Newby   58  
Gilmour   84  
Mr Brett Huxtable