Clarets Sunk By Bath
City’s dismal record at Twerton Park continued as first half goals from Ben Adelsbury and Kaid Mohamed condemned the Clarets to a 2-0 defeat.
Today's defeat saw City continue a run that hadn’t seen the Clarets record a win at Twerton Park since February 2004.
And it could have been a completely different story had Matt Whichelow and Jordan Brown both converted their early opportunities in front of goal in the opening 10 minutes, with both forcing Bath ‘keeper Steve Phillips into early saves.
But having missed those good opportunities the hosts went in front against the run of play through Ben Adelsbury’s 25 yard rocket into the top corner.
On the stroke of half time the Romans doubled their lead when Kaid Mohamed was left unmarked at the back post following a corner, with the two goal lead proving to be a deficit that Mark Hawkes’ side were unable to overcome.
So the long wait for a win at Twerton Park continues as Bath City finally put an end to their recent run of poor league form which had seen them go seven games without a win, as well as losing out to lower league Harlow Town in the Emirates FA Cup.
With Chelmsford’s new signings, Ben Marlow and Michael Thalassitis, on the bench Mark Hawkes made two changes to his starting 11 with the available again Aiden Palmer replacing Mark Haines and Bagasan Graham replacing Hugo Skepelhorn.
And it was the visitors who’d made the brighter start forcing Steve Phillips in the Bath City goal into action twice in the opening 10 minutes.
First to test Phillips was Matt Whichelow after Bagasan Graham intercepted a wayward pass in midfield before laying off Whichelow whose strike was too close to the goalkeeper, allowing him to parry away to safety.
Whichelow then almost turned provider as he slid in Jordan Brown on the right. Onside and one-on-one with Phillips the on-loan West Ham forward was unable to get the ball beyond the legs of the Roman’s ‘keeper who did well to keep City out for a second time.
Had the Clarets been more clinical in front of goal they could well have been 2-0 up, but instead they found themselves a goal down after Ben Adelsbury opened the scoring just over the quarter hour mark.
Surrounded by Claret shirts a neat little flick from Dave Pratt laid the ball on a plate for Adelsbury who sent his first-time effort hurtling passed Christian Dibble and into the top corner from 25 yards to put the home side in front against the run of play.
The goal looked to have knocked the stuffing out of City who failed to create any further clear opportunities. Whichelow struck a well hit strike from distance that was straight down the throat of Phillips, and Brown went in bravely on Phillips to try and convert a loose ball but came out second best.
But right on the stroke of half time City’s task was worsened as they fell two goals behind after failing to deal with a corner. Adelsbury’s flick found its way to Pratt whose shot was smothered, but the ricochet fell kindly for Kaid Mohamed at the far post to smash the ball in to double the home side’s advantage.
Now with a two goal lead the Romans were happy to sit in and contain their visitors in the second half, restricting City to minimal opportunities to get back into the contest, but still created a handful of chances of their own.
Mohamed had a free kick well read by Dibble which was comfortably saved, and Pratt forced Dibble into a smart reflex save at his near post after ghosting passed three Claret shirts with ease to free up a shot on goal.
The Clarets’ best chances in front of goal came towards the end of the tie through Luke Daley and substitute Hugo Skepelhorn.
Daley found acres of space on the edge of the box but his low drive was comfortably saved by Phillips and after using his pace to see off Matt Coupe, Skepelhorn failed to beat Phillips at his near post at a narrow angle.
“Sometimes in football you’re disappointed when you lose games. Don’t get me wrong I’m disappointed that we lost the game but I’m not disappointed in the way we played” said Hawkes at full time.
“All we lacked today was we made the wrong decisions in the last third and we had a couple of one-on-ones in the first quarter hour, 20 minutes of this game and when you’re the dominant side you have to make your advantage count. We could have been two up before Bath had had a shot today.”
1. Steve Phillips
2. Daniel Bowman
3. Andy Gallinagh (C)
4. Matt Coupe
5. Dan Ball
6. Chas Hemmings
7. Ashley Kington
8. Ben Adelsbury
9. Dave Pratt
10. Nick McCootie
11. Kaid Mohamed
12. Ashley Yeoman (On for Dave Pratt 85’)
14. Brad Williams (On for Chas Hemmings 84’)
15. Andy Watkins (On for Nick McCootie 72’)
16. Sekani Simpson
17. Miles John
1. Christian Dibble
2. Rob Girdlestone
3. Aiden Palmer
4. Lee Sawyer
5. Marvin Ekpiteta
6. Rory McAuley (C)
7. Luke Daley
8. Harry Morgan
9. Jordan Brown
10. Matt Whichelow
11. Bagasan Graham
12. Hugo Skepelhorn (On for Jordan Brown 63’)
14. Mark Hughes (On for Lee Sawyer 69’)
15. Mark Haines
16. Ben Marlow
18. Michael Thalassitis (On for Aiden Palmer 63’)
Bath City: Ben Adelsbury 16’, Kaid Mohamed 45+1’
Chelmsford City: None
Bath City: None
Chelmsford City: Marvin Ekpiteta (Obstruction – 65’), Mark Hughes (Dissent – 71’)
Referee: M Buonassisi
Assistants: M Wardell, R Cox
City Man of the Match: Matt Whichelow