Match Report: Saturday, 19 December 2015: National League South:
Chelmsford City 0 Wealdstone 2
Wealdstone again confounded their critics by turning over Chelmsford City at a blustery Melbourne Stadiumon Saturday but more to the point they gained a hugely valuable three points in their quest for National League South consolidation.
Make no mistake though this was a fine, all roundbattling display from Stones that featured debuts from West Ham United loanee keeper Sam Howes, and highly experienced defender Jack Smith signed fromleague rivals Hemel Hempstead Town on Friday.
HJust as significantly, injury plagued centre half Tom Cadmore was finally fit and able to replace the suspended Tom Hamblin. All performed admirably and this will have pleased Stones management team as they prepare for a difficult FA Trophy trip to Weston – super-Mare on Tuesday evening and a tough looking set of Christmas holiday fixtures.
Stones shook off their frustrating ball retention issuesafter their previous frustrating league defeat with some style and took what proved to be an unassailable first half two goal lead from which the Clarets could not respond.
Wealdstone were put under early pressure by the higher placed home side but for all their attacking intent, it was Stones that grabbed the lead on 15 minutes. From a decent Scott Davies corner Jonathan Wright rose to meet it at the far post but the hosts failed to react as it crashed against the bar, leaving skipper Wes Parker to get down low, finding the net from close-range.
City attempted an immediate reply and almost achieved it when Rory McAuley dived to meet Matt Whichelow’s corner, only to watch it fly over.
The home side thought they’d pulled themselves back into the contest when Marvin Ekpiteta converted Graham’s free-kick at the back post, but the effort was ruled out for offside.
It was proving to be a frustrating afternoon for the City who were finding Stones back line a real challenge to break down, with their highly rated striker Billy Bricknell looking isolated up front.
Ben Marlow for City went close with a volley before half-time but the miss proved costly as Lee Sawyer was dispossessed with acres of space gaping behind them. It allowed the ever lively Bradley Hudson-Odoi to power through and rifle home past Brown, leaving City in real trouble at a crucial point in the match.
Stones dominated the second half and they confidently created several good chances to increase their lead. The hard working Jefferson Louis powered home a header but the big front man was denied by the offside flag.
But it didn’t matter as Wealdstone celebrated a deserved victory at the final whistle in front of their travelling army of relieved fans.
Wealdstone: Howes, Duffy, Binns, Parker (C), Cadmore, Godfrey, Wright, Harriott, Louis, Davies, Hudson-Odoi
Subs: Jack Smith (for Duffy, 35’), Hutchinson (for Louis, 87’), Corcoran (for Parker, 66’)
Not used: Lucien, Joe Taylor (GK)