WOKING 1 CHELMSFORD CITY 1
By User 490922
Clarets forced to accept a point after letting lead slip at Woking.
Chris Whelpdale handed City a first half lead with a reaction shot after Rhys Murphy's header struck the bar, but the hosts levelled early in the second half through debutant Jamar Loza.
City boss Rod Stringer made one change to the side that was beaten 4-2 by St Albans City last weekend: Jordan Chiedozie was handed his first full start for the Club while Tom Wraight settled for a place on the substitutes' bench.
Chelmsford started the first half brightly and could have taken the lead inside ten minutes in-front of the 111 travelling supporters. Murphy slid the ball wide to Chiedozie as the striker partners overlapped on the right-wing, the 24-year-old looped a cross into the box and Cards’ goalkeeper Craig Ross was forced to concede a corner by tipping it over his crossbar.
The hosts had a chance of their own as they made a rare breakaway. Joe Anderson – playing on his birthday against his former employers - shanked a low ball to Max Kretzschmar just outside the Woking box. Alan Dowson’s side broke swiftly down the pitch, eventually the ball was played to Nick Wheeler on the left-side of the box, but the tricky winger curled high and wide as he cut inside past Rob Swaine.
City kept pressing for an opening goal and looked the more likely to break the deadlock. Former Cards wingback Matt Young found space on the right wing which allowed him to flash a cross into the box, but the ball went narrowly wide as Murphy threw his body at the delivery. Chiedozie struck well after turning under pressure, but his shot was blocked by his own team-mate.
Anderson tested Ross’ reactions with a corner – which the Cards’ ‘keeper tipped over the bar for another set-piece – but the shot-stopper was left ruing his decision as City took the lead from the immediate corner. Anderson fizzed the ball into the area, Murphy helped the ball onto the crossbar, but it cannoned down to Whelpdale who instinctively turned the ball over the line on 35 minutes.
Amos Nasha almost doubled City’s lead as he curled a shot towards goal from 25-yards, but Ross dived to his right to claim the testing effort.
Loza came close to levelling the score seconds before the interval, but he was left watching his shot dribble wide after he beat City’s offside trap in first half stoppage time.
The Clarets dominated the first half but were second best throughout the majority of the second half.
Jake Hyde switched the ball to Loza in City’s boss two minutes into the half, but the flag was raised before he could pull the trigger on his shot.
But the hosts pulled level twelve minutes into the second half. Loza swallowed up a loose ball which City failed to deal with and the Maidstone United loanee slotted past Nathan McDonald from ten yards out.
McDonald was called into action just past the hour-mark, making a sliding tackle to dispossess Hyde. The ball fell to Paul Hodges with City’s shot-stopper in no-man’s land, but Swaine was on-hand to block the substitute’s attempted shot with his body.
Loza forced himself away from Anderson to break forward, the loanee drove a low cross into the City box but it was too far behind Hodges for the substitute to form a connection and Swaine could play the ball away to Church who broke quickly. The central midfielder spotted Murphy’s direct run, lofting a pass forward to the striker, but the flag was raised as the City man was penalised for being marginally offside.
Whelpdale came close as he controlled Murphy’s pass well inside the area. His clever movement found him space to shoot but Ross produced a save to deny the midfielder with his legs.
Both sides accepted a point however Woking were handed two late chances to snatch victory. Hyde out-muscled Elliot Omozusi inside the area, but his diving header gratefully flew past the post before Loza struck a spinning shot into McDonald’s deep into added time.