Tranmere Rovers 1-0 FC Halifax Town
It was always a tough ask after Saturday’s frustrating defeat against Torquay to go away to high flying Tranmere, but in the end it was just the one goal that separated the two sides courtesy of Andy Mangan with quarter of an hour to play.
It was the hosts who started the brightest with FC Halifax’s top scorer from last season, Lois Maynard, peppering Matt Glennon’s goal from the edge of the area.
With just ten minutes gone Tranmere had a golden opportunity when Mangan’s turn and precise pass found Jonny Margetts but the striker saw his shot go just millimetres wide of the post.
Town’s first effort of the game came in form of livewire Shaun Tuton when he picked up Scott McManus’ throw and his half volley from the edge of the area was just inches over the bar.
The Shaymen had another great opportunity five minutes later, albeit through a bit of luck. McManus raced away down the left flank and his fizzed cross deflected off a couple of Tranmere defenders goal-wards but Scott Davies eventually smothered it.
From then on it was all Tranmere for the remainder of the half. Michael Ihiekwe had three opportunities, two of which were free headers that went wide, and Margetts forced Glennon into three more saves.
In the second half FC Halifax were restricted to just the one clear effort at goal, and that was in the final minute. Tranmere continued their dominant play and Liam Ridehalgh very nearly put the home side ahead after an hour when he bundled his way into the area but his half-volley was deflected into the hands of Glennon.
Mangan could have had his goal earlier when he wriggled his way past three Town defenders in the area but stabbed his effort wide of the far post.
In the 74th minute, Mangan did his get goal. Ridehalgh glided forward unchallenged and threaded a perfect ball into the path of the Rovers striker who coolly slotted past Glennon first time to make it 1-0.
The Shaymen’s only real chance of the second half came in injury time, when substitute Josh MacDonald’s cross found Jordan Burrow but his first time volley deflected into the grateful arms of Davies.
FC Halifax perhaps unlucky after all their hard work defensively but with a lack of opportunities going forward, it was always going to be difficult to come away with the points.