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Saturday 11 August
Blyth Spartans 8 Chester 1
Conference National North
Attendance: 737 Half Time: 3-0
Booked: Hughes.
Sent-off: Roberts.

Blyth Spartans: Jameson, Nicholson, Liddle, Green (Oliver 62), Buddle, Cunningham, Rivers (Wrightson 65), Reid, Maguire, Holmes (Horner 67), Dale. Subs not used: Watson, Skirpan.
Chester: Shenton, Dominic Smalley (Marsh-Hughes 73), Pritchard, Howson, Grand, Livesey, Stopforth, Roberts, Mooney (Burton 62), Hughes, Dudley. Subs not used: Mahon, Thomson, Moran.
Referee: Richard Aspinall.

A shambles from Chester who have Gary Roberts sent-off and are thrashed at Blyth Spartans.

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

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Monday 6 August
Curzon Ashton 0 Chester 3
Conference National North
Attendance: 977 Half Time: 0-2
Booked: Mooney, Dudley.

Curzon Ashton: Mason, Morton, McJannet, Hunt, Shaw, Rowney, Guest, Marshall (Crankshaw 65), Sharpe (Brooke 65), Fawns (McKenzie 76), Hughes. Subs not used: Baillie, Ali.
Chester: Shenton, Grand, Livesey, Howson, Pritchard, Dominic Smalley (Thomson 81), Roberts, Stopforth, Mooney (Brown 72), Tuton (Mahon 68), Dudley. Subs not used: Moran, Downes.
Referee: David McNamara.

Chester followed up their opening day point with a deserved victory at Curzon Ashton just two days later. Goals from Simon Grand, Anthony Dudley and John Pritchard brought the three points back from the Tameside Stadium.

The Blues, who had named an unchanged side from Saturday, almost fell behind on 10 minutes as Cameron McJannet’s through ball caught out the defence and found Chris Sharpe who shot wide when a goal looked certain.

It was half way through the opening period before Chester had their first real look at goal as Shaun Tuton’s cross was cleared to Gary Stopworth who forced a save from Cameron Mason in the home goal.

Chester took the lead from the resulting corner as Grand headed home John Pritchard’s cross from close range. The Blues soon doubled their lead as Gary Roberts, instrumental in midfield, sent Dudley through on goal and the on-loan striker gave Mason no chance.

The Blues maintained their lead at the break thanks to a Grant Shenton save that denied Joe Guest two minutes before the interval.

On the hour mark Chester added a third to wrap up the points. Good work from Dudley set up Roberts and Dominic Smalley whose cross was met by Pritchard, the ball hitting the net via a deflection.

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

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Saturday 4 August
Chester 0 Spennymoor Town 0
Conference National North
Attendance: 2,191 Half Time: 0-0
Booked: Roberts, Mooney.

Chester: Shenton, Dominic Smalley, Howson, Livesey, Grand, Pritchard, Roberts,, Stopforth, Mooney (Mahon 64), Dudley, Tuton. Subs not used: Moran, Thomson, Brown, Downes.
Spennymoor Town: Gould, Williams, Thackray, Curtis, Brogan, Chandler, Anderson (Hibbs 76), Ramshaw (Boyes 90), Foley (Henry 64), Taylor, Johnson. Subs not used: Elliott, King.
Referee: Aaron Jackson.

The points were shared as Chester and Spennymoor started the season with a stalemate at the Deva. Chester had the better of the first half but faded a little after the break.

No fewer than ten new signings started for the Blues as the new season under joint managers Anthony Johnson and Bernard Morley got underway in front of a crowd of over 2,000. Scott Burton missed out through injury so Gary Roberts took the captain’s armband.

After an early Dan Mooney strike drifted wide The Blues forced the first real chance midway through the half as Anthony Dudley split the visitors defence with a perfect path to Mooney, he struggled to control the ball but found Dudley who fired just wide from 20 yards.

Chester saw Gary Roberts curl a free-kick just over the bar and Mooney again was in the action sending a shot just over on the half hour as Chester pressed.

Ten minutes before the break Spennymoor almost took the lead as Rob Ramshaw burst through only for his effort that looked goalbound to be cleared by Danny Livesey for a corner.

Minutes into the second period Matthew Gould in the Spennymoor goal did well to save a Shaun Tuton 20-yard effort, the same striker saw another good effort fly just wide of the post moments later.

At the other end, Glen Taylor forced a close range save from Gary Shenton and Stephen Brogan chipped an effort over the bar after latching on to a ball sent over the top of the Chester defence.

Chances were coming at both ends as Dudley saw an effort bounce back from the underside of the bar and with eight minutes remaining Gould produced a top-class save to deny John Pritchard whose effort was heading into the top corner.

The last effort of the game came two minutes from time as Dudley turned his marker to shoot low but straight at Gould.

Picture © Rick Matthews (Chester Leader)

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Tuesday’s home game against Kidderminster has been postponed to due water damage to certain parts of the stadium.
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An awful day for Chester who have Gary Roberts sent-off and are thrashed 8-1 at Blyth Spartans.
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Chester are at home to FC United of Manchester on Saturday, kick-off 15.00hrs.
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