Chelmsford City 6 Thurrock 1
Blue Square Bet South
Bill Robinson reports from Melbourne Stadium…..
After nearly four weeks without a competitive match both teams were anticipating a rewarding local derby. Thurrock have not beaten Chelmsford City since 1997 and were high in expectation and fielded a full strength side.
The first twenty minutes lacked the anticipated excitement the 900 supporters were expecting, only referee Jake Hillier made an impression booking three Thurrock players for the most innocuous tackles, whilst appearing to miss similar offences by the home side.
Disappointingly for Thurrock they then conceded two soft goals before the break, on both occasions they were in possession in their own half when Chelmsford scored.
The first goal came on 22 minutes when Rob Swaine cleared the danger on the edge of the box only for the referee to award a free kick to City and booked Swaine for his challenge much to the surprise of everyone in attendance.
When the cross came over Ricky Modeste struck a firm shot that was well saved by Joe Woolley but as the ball rolled out Anthony Cook was first to react and he planted the ball into the back of the net.
Seven minutes later Cook got his and his teams second, a Thurrock throw in deep in their own half, failed to be cleared as Kenny Clark’s effort was blocked by Ricky Modeste who then played the ball through into the path of Cook who blasted home a fine goal from about twelve yards.
Thurrock made one change at half time, replacing Kenny Beaney with Joe Carlos whose pace would be a threat down the flanks.
Thurrock were pushing forward looking to get back into the game which allowed Chelmsford to attack on the break.
Just before the hour one such break gave City their third goal, the ball was played from just inside Thurrock’s half by John Martin out wide and deep where Dave Rainford dummy run wrong footed the Thurrock defence which allowed Modeste to cross the ball back into the path of Rainford who placed his shot wide of Woolley and into the net.
On 65 minutes Thurrock had there best chance of the game, a fine run by Lee Flynn on the right who put in a deep cross which found the head of Joe Carlos but his aim was too high and the ball flew over the bar.
It was only three minutes later that Carlos made up for his miss by scoring from close range, as the ball came over Bradley Hudson-Odoi challenged with a header that was deflected by Rainford towards his own goal and as keeper James Pullen dived to save he pushed the ball out into the path of Joe Carlos who blasted it home.
Thurrock seemed to grow in confidence after the goal but still found it difficult to create real goal scoring chances. Chelmsford were happy to stand firm and defend but with only six minutes remaining and Thurrock needing to throw players forward they left large holes in their defence which was to be breach three times in the last remaining minutes.
Long accurate passing by the Chelmsford defence and midfield enabled them to break quickly with the added benefit of fine finishing the fourth fifth and final goals came from Stephen Reed (84min and 90min) and Rob Edmans (88min).
A disappointed Greg Lincoln declined to be interviewed or comment after the game. He now needs to motivate his squad when Dover and BBC Football Focus come to visit Ship Lane on Monday for there next league match.