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30 August 2011
It was a case of after the Lord Mayor's Show for Chester who followed up their 5-1 thumping of Stocksbridge Park Steels on Saturday with a disappointing display in the 4-1 defeat at Cheshire rivals Nantwich Town on the bank holiday Monday. The defeat was the worst for the club since Chester reformed last summer. Manager Neil Young made changes at the Weaver Stadium after Chris Simm and Iain Howard, who both starred in the Saturday victory, turned up 40 minutes late, arriving in Nantwich just over an hour before kick-off, and were dropped to the bench as a result.

Despite having the better share of the opening period a moment of hesitation in defence cost Chester as Michael Powell lost the ball to Sean Cooke, he fed striker Ben Mills who rounded the advancing John Danby to score with ease. A great save from Jonathon Brain denied Jamie Rainford whose curling shot was heading to the top corner before the home ‘keeper tipped the ball over.

After the break captain George Horan was sent off, picking up a second yellow card for pulling the shirt of Cooke. The Blues defenders argued that the offence took place outside the box but referee Bartlett pointed to the spot and Mills sent Danby the wrong way.

Michael Lennon added a third slipping the ball under Danby. A large number of the 1,000+ Chester support had already headed for the exit before Christian Smith scored a consolation for the Blues on 77 minutes, the assistant referee ruling his header had crossed the line before a defender cleared. The home side wrapped things up five minutes from time as Liam Prince was left unmarked to score after Gregg Stones ha cleared a Lennon effort off the line.

Latest table

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

26 August 2011
Chester will be looking to build on the fine midweek victory over FC United of Manchester with another three points as they entertain Stocksbridge Park Steels on Saturday (15.00hrs).

The Sheffield based side currently lie 15th with four points from four games following a home 1-1 draw with Ashton United and victory over Stafford Rangers (1-0). Away from home Steels have lost at both Marine (0-1) and North Ferriby United (1-2).

As usual, for those who can’t make the match Blues Live, with sponsorship from The Exiles, will be bringing full match commentary from around 30 minutes prior to kick-off.

The Blues turned in their best performance of the season on Wednesday night with both Matty McGinn and Chirs Simm having outstanding games. McGinn (pictured) opened the scoring from the penalty spot after Simm had been pushed over in the area.

The on-loan Southport defender went on make some timely tackles and blocks to earn the man of the match award. Chester doubled their advantage on the stroke of half-time through Matt McNeil who notched his third goal in four games following a through header from George Horan.

United pulled a goal back ten minutes from time, and, despite a few nervy moments, Chester held firm to pick up all three points to the delight of the majority of the 3,219 crowd packed inside the ground.

Latest table | Blues Live commentary

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

Those supporters who can’t get to the all-ticket derby match at Nantwich Town on Bank Holiday Monday, but will be at their computer/mobile, will be able to hear live online commentary from Crewe based community radio station Red Shift Radio, the official media partners with Nantwich Town. All you need to do on the day is click the ‘Listen Live’ button on the website link below.

Red Shift Radio

23 August 2011
A new Chester fanzine ‘The Blue and White’ will be on sale tomorrow outside the ground before and after the match against FC United of Manchester.

Copies will also be on sale on Saturday at the home game against Stocksbridge Park Steels and will be available from Bluecoat Books (1 City Walls (top end of Northgate Street)) as well as Hawarden Post Office. The fanzine which will be produced twice a year is also available to buy online from the fanzine website where articles for future issues are also welcome. All profits from the sales will be donated to the Junior Blues.

The Blue and White

21 August 2011
Chester have moved into the transfer market to sign 27-year-old left-back Matty McGinn from Blue Square Conference side Southport. McGinn scored six goals in 26 appearances for the Sandgrounders last season.

Midfielder Ashley Williams is expected to be out until Christmas after suffering a torn shoulder tendon in yesterday’s 1-0 defeat at Hednesford Town, a similar injury to the one suffered pre-season by Michael Wilde.

Williams was left unconscious after falling awkwardly following a tackle in the 13th minute at Keys Park. He spent most of the night in Stafford hospital before being released late last night and is expected to have surgery soon.

Earlier in the day manager Neil Young learned that defender Robert Marsh-Evans was leaving with immediate effect to pursue a career outside of football.

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

18 August 2011
Chester recorded their first win of the season with 4-1 victory at Burscough on Wednesday night. The win was no more that their dominance deserved, and lifted the Blues into fifth place in the table. Jamie Rainford banished the memory of Saturday’s penalty miss when he converted from the spot after just three minutes to give the Blues, in yellow, the lead.

The home side equalised with a penalty of their own on 30 minutes as Greg Stones was harshly adjudged to have fouled Liam Blakeman. Paul Williams sent John Danby the wrong was from the resulting spot-kick.

Chester continued to press in the second period and further goals from Jerome Wright, Matt McNeil and George Horan confirmed their dominance.

The Blues are back in action on Saturday when they travel to Keyes Park to play third placed Hednesford Town. The Pitmen have won both of their opening matches, at Bradford Park Avenue (1-0) on Saturday, and a stoppage time goal at home saw them come from two goals down to beat Buxton 3-2 in midweek.

More Pictures | Latest table

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

Thanks to the hard work by the board at Chester FC the club have been awarded a grant for £65,000 to be used for volunteer training and community work. The supporter survey carried out earlier in the year, highlighted the huge number of people who had expressed an interest in volunteering their services to the club. Money from the grant will be used to set up a training programme and to achieve this the club are looking to appoint a full-time learning coordinator for the project, which will run from September to March.

David Evans who is director of communications at the football club said: “Our recent survey of our 2,800 members showed that hundreds of supporters are willing to volunteer to help the club.This could be anything from helping in the office to promoting the club in the community. The fund will give us the capacity to take up all the offers that have been made, organise activities that will be useful and enjoyable for supporters to participate in, and continue to build our club in the community.”

“We would like to hear from anyone who has a background in adult learning and might be excited by the prospect of working with us to provide informal learning for our volunteers. Being a supporter-led, volunteer-based club is central to our values.”

14 August 2011
Chester were held 1-1 by Rushall Olympic on Saturday as the new season got underway. Summer signing Matt McNeil gave the Blues the perfect start touching home a Greg Stones effort after 14 minutes. Referee Paul Mahon denied Chester a perfectly good second goal when he failed to play advantage and pulled play back for a free-kick after Robbie Booth had netted.

A mix-up in the defence culminated in John Danby conceding a penalty seven minutes before the break for a foul on Matt Lewis, the spot kick was duly dispatched by the same player.

Both sides had chances after the break the best falling to Chester who were themselves awarded a penalty when Grant Beckett brought down Jamie Rainford in the area fifteen minutes from time. Rainford stepped up but saw his penalty saved by Olympic’s ‘keeper Chris Gemmell.

A frustrated manager Neil Young said: “You saw how Rushall celebrated at the end and it’s the first game of the season. They had clearly come here for a point and got that. They were holding on at the end.
When you miss a penalty, give a goal away from one defensive error, have a perfectly good goal chalked off, four or five shots which were well blocked and ones cleared off the line, you can say it’s frustrating and unlucky. But you’ve just got to get on with it.”

Chester are next in action when they travel to play Burscough (at Skelmersdale FC) on Wednesday night, kick-off 19.45hrs.

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

10 August 2011
Chester have signed Matty Woodward from Airbus UK. The 27-year-old defender, who has made 80 appearances for the north Wales side, played in the 2-1 friendly defeat against Hyde United on Tuesday night.

Manager Neil Young told the club website: “Matty has been brought in to bolster our defensive area as he can play anywere along the back four but more predominintly either right back or centre back. He has a great level of experience with Airbus UK, and he will now train with the squad and try and get up to speed as quickly as possible.”

The Blues finished their pre-season campaign with a good display despite two late Hyde goals giving the visitors victory. Chris Simm had opened the scoring for Chester on 76 minutes. There was another appearance as well from trialist Christian Smith.

Match report

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

9 August 2011
The club have announced that once again season ticket sales have past the 1,000 mark. Last year’s club record total of 1,006 sales included half-season tickets bought in January. Supporters who have ordered tickets can collect their season tickets between 10.00-16.00hrs Monday to Friday, or before tonight’s home game against Hyde United, or prior to Saturday’s opening league game of the season against Rushall Olympic.

6 August 2011
Goals from Jerome Wright (left) and Chris Simm earned Chester a share of the spoils against Welsh Premier League champions Bangor City. A crowd of 820 had seen the visitors take the lead through Alan Bull ten minutes before the half-time break.

Wright brought parity on 63 minutes converting a rebound after Simm has seen a shot well saved. Simm himself put the Blues ahead seven minutes later collecting a through ball from Alex Brown before slotting past Lee Idzi in the Bangor goal. John Danby did well to save a Sion Edwards but couldn't prevent Bull latching on to the loose ball to equalise.

Chester complete their pre-season campaign with a home match against Hyde United on Tuesday night, kick-off 19:45hrs, admission is adults £5.00 and concessions £5.00, under 16’s £1.00.

Pre-season matches

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

The club held their press day prior to yesterday’s match. New individual player pictures can be viewed here. The youth team squad pictures can be seen here, and team picture here.

Back: Mark Reed, Joe Ormrod, Rob Marsh-Evans, Matt McNeil, Chris Simm, Wes Baynes.
Middle: Bradley Barnes, Jerome Wright, Robbie Booth, John Danby, Jamie Rainford, Michael Taylor, Michael Powell.
Front: Michael Wilde, Greg Stones, Iain Howard, Neil Young (Manager), George Horan (Captain), Ashley Williams, Alex Brown, Liam Brownhill.

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)
2 August 2011
Chester suffered their second defeat of the pre-season when they were beaten in an entertaining encounter by their Conference North opponents at Bower Fold. Celtic managed by former Chester boss Jim Harvey fielded a number of ex-Blues in their squad.

Chester fielded a couple of trialists in their squad, forward Kevin Gall and midfielder Danny Pilkington. The Blues found themselves two down at the break, it could have been worse but for a penalty save by John Danby early in the match. A third goal after the break finished off the Blues who scored a late consolation goal through Mark Reed (pictured).

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

































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