Cards aiming for back-to-back wins to start the season

Glen Harrington
9:04pm, Wed 25th Aug 2021
Woking vs FC Halifax Town
Vanarama National League
Saturday 28th August 2021

Woking will be aiming to make it two wins out of two to start the new National League season when they host FC Halifax Town at the Laithwaite Community Stadium this weekend.

The Cards could not have wished for a better start to their new campaign, with a Max Kretzschmar brace seeing them race into a two-goal lead inside 25 minutes away to Wealdstone, whilst Alan Dowson’s side played some impressive stuff in a dominant first-half performance. Despite the second-half proving more challenging, with the home side striking back through Josh Umerah, a solid defensive display in the closing stages ensured a fifth successive opening day win for Woking.

There had been much discussion in the build-up about what team Dowse would pick after assembling an impressive squad including 12 new signings. The boss landed on a 4-2-3-1 formation with a back four of Kyran Lofthouse, Josh Casey, Joe McNerney and Moussa Diarra in front of goalkeeper Craig Ross. A midfield pairing of Rohan Ince and Solomon Nwabuokei, Tahvon Campbell and Jordan Maguire-Drew out wide, with Max Kretzschmar playing behind Inih Effiong.

There are plenty of options should Dowse wish to rotate, including midfielders Tarryn Allarakhia and Kane Thompson-Sommers, who is now fully fit after a knock in pre-season, and forwards Tyreke Johnson, Jamar Loza and George Oakley. Tom Champion, who impressed from the bench on Saturday, could play in midfield or in defence as part of a back three.

Opposition Watch

After finishing 15th in 2019, Halifax have enjoyed two strong seasons in the fifth tier, finishing sixth in 2020, losing in the play-offs to Boreham Wood, and then tenth last year, missing out on a spot in the top seven by just four points. Former Woking striker Jake Hyde was amongst their star performers last year, scoring 12 times in 27 appearances, including the only goal when the two sides met in April, but he won’t be on show this weekend having joined Wrexham this summer.

Hyde is not the only high-profile departure from the Shay since the end of last season. Midfielder Jack Earing has joined Walsall of League Two, defenders Neill Byrne and Jeff King have joined Hartlepool United and Chesterfield respectively, whilst veteran captain Nathan Clarke has retired. The most notable incomings are striker Billy Waters, from Torquay United, and attacking midfielder Matty Warburton, who was on loan at Yeovil Town from Northampton Town last season. Waters scored for the Shaymen in a 2-1 defeat at home to Maidenhead United last weekend – ex-Card Kane Ferdinand scored a late winner for the Magpies.

Halifax are managed by Pete Wild, who has been with the club since 2019, having previously been with Oldham Athletic. He has won 38 of his 88 games in charge.

Recent Meetings

• FC Halifax Town 1-0 Woking – 27th April 2021, National League
• Woking 0-0 FC Halifax Town – 17th October 2020, National League
• FC Halifax Town 0-2 Woking – 7th March 2020, National League (Kretzschmar, Hyde)
• Woking 0-0 FC Halifax Town – 16th November 2019, National League
• Woking 1-3 FC Halifax Town – 10th March 2018, National League (Carter)

On the Day

Ticket prices are £18 for Adults, Concessions £13, Students and Next Generation £10 and £5 for 16-year-olds and under – click here for more information and to book your tickets online.

This match will be segregated, with Halifax Town fans being allocated the Chris Lane Terrace and some seats in the Seymours Community LGS.

Match Sponsors

Thank you to our Match Sponsor Seymours Estate Agents and our Match Ball Sponsor Jon Woozley Mortgage Advice.

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