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Chasetown FC 0 Kendal Town 1

Chasetown FC's Jack Farmer puts in a tackle. Pic: Dave Birt

Chasetown FC's Jack Farmer puts in a tackle. Pic: Dave Birt

Chasetown FC tried their hardest but lost out narrowly 1-0 to Kendal Town in theirEvo-Stik Northern Premier League encounter.

Despite missing two key players in Richard Teesdale and Dean Perrow, the Scholars really took the fight to their opponents and worked hard to produce some tough play, a plethora of chances in the closing minutes really displaying their determination.

Kendal started the stronger and in the fifth minute Alex Taylor outpaced the defence but birthday boy Ryan Price blocked his final run and the ball bobbled out for a goal kick.

Gary Birch and Grant Ryan were working well together up front and set up Gavin Saunders on the left ten minutes in but his effort went over the bar, while a dangerous free kick from the edge of the area was crashed off the bar by Mark Branch.

Kendal skipper Glenn Steel then forced Price into a good save, and Chasetown continued to pile on the pressure with the Branch brothers menacing the Town defence.  Price had to be alert again just past the half hour to gather a close-range header from Steel, and the end to end play continued with stand-in skipper Dave Egan forcing Field keeper David Newnes into a diving save.

The visitors started the second half were stronger, and on 52 minutes were ahead when a low cross evaded the Chasetown defence and Danny McGahan fired the ball past Price.

Grant Ryan tries to launch a Chasetown FC attack. Pic: Dave Birt

Grant Ryan tries to launch a Chasetown FC attack. Pic: Dave Birt

Undaunted, the Scholars fought back and five minutes later Birch fired inches wide of the near post after an excellent turn under pressure, while Price survived a knock to continue between the sticks.

Former Hednesford man David Bridgewater made his Scholars debut as he replaced Saunders on 70 minutes, but the hosts’ efforts continued to be stifled by a strong Kendal set-up, Gavin Clark going close on 78 minutes for the visitors.

Egan went agonisingly close with five minutes on the clock but his right-footed shot looped inches over at the far post, and that was just about as close as the Scholars would get to finding the target, Birch also firing over from a Bridgewater corner in the final minute while the newcomer, Birch and Grant Ryan all tested Newnes in stoppage time, the former with fine a 25-yard drive.

Newnes also collected a volley from young gun Jack Farmer just under his crossbar as the minutes ticked down, but Kendal held out for the three points.

Click below to listen to manager Charlie Blakemore’s post-match interview with The Lichfield Blog:

Monday night (September 6) sees the Scholars head to league leaders Ashton United (7.45pm kick-off), before visiting Kidsgrove Athletic in the FA Cup next Saturday (3pm kick-off).

Chasetown: Price, Farmer, M Branch, Cohen, Saunders, Horton, D Smith, J Branch, Birch, Ryan, Egan (c).  Subs: Hay, Stephens (D Smith 70), Bridgewater (Saunders 70), Peel, Jevons (Horton 45).
Kendal: Newnes, Walmsley, Moran, Winters, Steel (c), Clark, Osman, Rowe, Alex Taylor, McGahan, Wisdom.  Subs: Foster (Alex Taylor 51), Melling (Aaron Taylor 85), Aaron Taylor (Rowe 70), Tucker, Newton (GK).

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