A fantastic attacking performance from the Seals saw six goals for Neil Young’s side and Chester FC’s highest ever scoring game. Chester blew Stalybridge away in the first half going into the break with a 4-0 lead. A notably improved Stalybridge managed to draw the second half 2-2 with Chester but the damage had already been done and Chester could afford to let their foot off the gas. Iain Howard was the star with a brilliant hat-trick, but there were also stand out performances from Antoni Sarcevic, Nathan Jarman and Dave Hankin. Here is a rather positive blog about a brilliant afternoon watching Chester.
1) Iain Howard, Iain Howard, Iain Howard, Iain Howard….
Dave who I was standing next to said, after Howard had tapped home his well deserved hat-trick, “he’s Chester FC’s best ever signing” and I have to agree whole heartedly. He has had a great time since joining Chester and has really earned his place in the starting line up. I’m quite certain he’ll be with us for as long as he wants to be, which hopefully will be at least a couple more years. Could see him being snapped up by a league club if he carries on like this. As for today, he was unstoppable. Another great across-the-keeper-drive into the bottom corner for his first, an easy tap in for his third and his second… my o my. The technique, the power, the precision… I hope they do free highlights (hint).
2) Antoni Sarcevic and Scott Brown
Have we found our best midfield pairing? Both absolutely outstanding today, Sarcevic was unlucky not to get a hat-trick himself and Brown was like Ashley Williams on a very good day with added passing thrown in. I won’t go as far to say they should both start every match, the other midfielders are all excellent options, but I won’t be disappointed to see this pairing in the future.
3) Luke Denson
Our new signing made an immediate impact by giving Wes Baynes the massive kick up the arse needed for his best performance of the season. It’s very good for players to have others challenging for their place. I hope Denson can play left back too, McGinn’s improved performance today suggests that he does.
All of the above points pick out players for different reasons. However, the reason they all played so well today was the commitment, desire and, above all, team spirit that has been instilled into the players by the management team. Every single one of the players put a brilliant shift in. Even John Danby made two brilliant close range saves before the second Stalybridge goal went in. Yes, there’s quality all over the pitch, but also the correct mentality throughout the team, which is worth a couple of points. And points mean prizes.
5) Our Hosts
As charming as Bower Field is, a steward calling all Chester fans “hooligans” is disgraceful. That’s all I’m going to say about that as I don’t want to rant and swear about how utterly fucking moronic that comment is.
Right, all spleen venting below please. Remember, the football match. It was great.