City left frustrated as Tudors ease to victory
It was all huff-and-puff with no reward for Chelmsford as they were comfortably beaten 3-1 by Hemel Hempstead.
Jordan Parkes’ brace put the Tudors in-front at half-time as an action-packed half saw Rod Stringer dismissed from the technical area midway through a disappointing half for the Clarets.
Parkes’ first of the evening came from the penalty spot after Mark Haines was adjudged to have fouled Will Hoskins, his second then came directly from a left-wing corner as debut goalkeeper Nathan Gartside was caught out-of-position at the far-post.
Spencer McCall furthered the hosts’ lead with a sublime curling effort before substitute Thomas Hitchcock was given a straight red card late in the second half. Scott Davies grabbed an added time consolation goal for City but it was far too little too late as Chelmsford fell to defeat.
Hemel Hempstead had the first chance of the half as they dominated the initial stages, however Hoskins’ breakaway shot was blocked well by Haines. The Clarets then had a chance of their own as Anthony Church saw his header cleared off the line by Ismail Yakubu, however neither side could put themselves ahead in the opening fifteen minutes.
A strong driving run from Christopher Dickson saw him calve open a chance from a narrow angle down the left-side, however his powerful shot was cleverly saved by Laurie Walker.
Despite the visitors’ lively start to proceedings, the Tudors were awarded a 23rd-minute penalty when Haines was adjudged to have fouled Hoskins inside the area much to the protests of the City players who felt it was not a foul. Jordan Parkes stepped up from 12 yards and slotted home into the bottom left corner as the hosts took the lead midway through the first half.
Meanwhile, amid Parkes’ celebrations, Stringer’s protests at the awarding of a penalty led to the City boss’ dismissal from the technical area by Lloyd Wood.
The Tudors almost doubled their lead when Parkes dragged back to Kaloczi from close-range, however Gartside made a low save to deny the approaching striker.
But soon afterwards the home side doubled their advantage directly from a corner. An in-swinging corner from Parkes beat Gartside – who protested to Mr Wood for a push – and the Clarets suddenly found themselves 2-0 behind after 36 minutes.
City almost grabbed a goal before the half-time interval when a low corner found Spillane who directed the ball towards the near-post, however his drilled shot dribbled just wide as a poor first half came to a climax.
It could have so easily been 3-0 to the Tudors had Spencer McCall taken full advantage of his side’s counter attack, however a low save from Gartside denied the quick attacking move.
Chelmsford then had a half-chance as a corner was played to Michael West by Church, however Yakubu found himself in the right place at the right time to deflect the opportunity away.
A half-time swap for the Tudors saw Lloyd Doyley substituted with Alex Osborn, but it was City who held the majority of the possession in the opening stages of the second half.
The Clarets’ first rotation of the game just prior to the hour mark as Shaun Batt came on to replace Lee Barnard. Then, a few moments later, Hoskins was replaced by Matt Spring.
While chances came fair and few between for either side, Taylor Miles made his first appearance for the Clarets by coming off the bench after 64 minutes to swap with West. Meanwhile the hosts were forced into a final change through injury at Matt Saudners was forced off.
A Parkes freekick was headed away by Davies following the changes, however Connolly’s fierce volley went well over. Dickson then broke forward as a defender slipped but Parkes tracked back well to deny the City striker.
And it proved to be Dickson’s last contribution to the game as he was taken off in a like-for-like change with Hitchcock as the game entered it’s final fifteen minutes.
The substitute striker almost immediately got himself and Chelmsford a goal when Jonny Giles’ left-wing freekick struck his head, however the effort looped up and onto the roof of the net.
The momentum grew as time grew old and City twice close to getting a lifeline. Batt’s pull-back to Spillane was blocked by Yakubu then Church headed agonisingly wide as Chelmsford threatened to grab a goal.
But after ten minutes of heavy Chelmsford pressure, the result was well and truly wrapped up as McCall’s spectacular effort from 25-yards out curled round Gartside into the top corner on 84 minutes.
However, the dramatics were not over as Hitchcock was given a straight red card for an alleged elbow on Yakubu as frustration seeped through for City.
But both teams ended the game with ten men as the Tudors' goalkeeper Laurie Walker was forced off through injury and Kyle Connolly took the position between the sticks.
Scott Davies grabbed City a late, late consolation strike as in the 95th minute he fired home from range but it was too little too late as City's winless run was extended to five games.
Hemel Hempstead Town:
1. Laurie Walker
2. Lloyd Doyley
3. Joe Howe
4. Jordan Parkes ©
5. Kyle Connolly
6. Ismail Yakubu
7. Matt Saunders
8. Scott Shulton
9. Will Hoskins
10. James Kaloczi
11. Spencer McCall
12. David Moyo
14. Alex Osborn (45’ on for Lloyd Doyley)
15. Ebby Nelson-Addy (64’ on for Matt Saunders)
16. Matt Spring (60’ on for Will Hoskins)
18. Danny Boness
1. Nathan Gartside
2. Elliot Omozusi ©
3. Craig Braham-Barrett
4. Scott Davies
5. Michael Spillane
6. Mark Haines
7. Michael West
8. Anthony Church
9. Lee Barnard
10. Chris Dickson
11. Jonathan Giles
12. Shaun Batt (58’ on for Lee Barnard)
14. Matthew Johnson
15. Taylor Miles (64’ on for Michael West)
16. Daniel Green
18. Thomas Hitchcock (74’ on for Christopher Dickson)
Hemel Hempstead Town: Jordan Parkes (24’ pen, 36’), Spencer McCall (84’)
Chelmsford City: Scott Davies (90+4')
Hemel Hempstead Town: None
Chelmsford City: Mark Haines (23’).
Hemel Hempstead Town: None
Chelmsford City: Thomas Hitchcock
Half Time: Hemel Hempstead 2-0 Chelmsford City
Full Time: Hemel Hempstead 3-1 Chelmsford City
Referee: Lloyd Wood, assisted by Karl Sear and Hugh Gilroy.