BLOG – Chester 3-1 Kidderminster

A solid performance from Chester against a poor-looking Kidderminster side saw the Blues run out pretty comfortable 3-1 winners. Despite Chester dominating almost all of the first half, Kidderminster struck first when a deep free-kick was put back across the area for a tap-in. Chester immediately responded with Roberts first being unlucky not to get a penalty before putting in a low cross that Hannah flicked in smartly. After half-time it was all Chester, with the Blues nicking the ball high up the pitch within the first 30 seconds of the restart, allowing Hannah to put Rooney in who passed it beautifully into the bottom corner. Once ahead Chester weren’t really threatened, though there were a couple of hairy moments that a better team might have put away. Eventually Hannah got his second after Rooney’s hit was parried temptingly into his path for a tap-in. Here a few thoughts about the game.

1. Rooney, Shaw, George

The midfield that we started the season with finally returned, and we looked much more balanced. With an actual defensive midfielder in the middle Rooney could at last be pushed up behind the striker (where he was excellent), whilst Shaw became much more of a link between defense and attack. It meant Shaw had his best game for a while. Oddly George didn’t have a great game, but he has been out for ages so it’s very understandable.

2. Mahon, Roberts, Hannah

Possibly the most dynamic forward line we’ve had since reforming and well suited to playing the high pressing game that Burr seems to want. They often pinned Kidderminster back and allowed the game to be played in their half as a result. The pressing led to the second goal too, with Mahon’s tackle falling to Hannah who then put Rooney through. The dribbling of Mahon (who seems to be back to his best, hooray!) and Roberts was also a big problem for the Kiddy defense and means gaps opened up in various locations up top.

3. Callum Dyson

Looked very promising. Big lad with a nice touch – he nearly put Chapell in within 10 seconds of coming on. Obviously if we can keep Roberts all season that’d be fantastic, but players like Dyson and McDonagh might be a better bet on that score, as they almost definitely won’t be needed at their parent club. They need polish, but definitely have enough promise to allow Chester to benefit from polishing them up.

4. Bench

Was very interesting. Forth, the left out centre back (Kay) and a spare winger (Chapell) all made sense, but two strikers (Dyson, Hobson) were a bit of a surprise. No central midfielder (like Woodland, Thomson), or our spare full back (Gordon)? I was confused at least.

3 wins in 4 games is an excellent turn around for the Blues, whose form was indifferent before then. A winnable game at Boreham Wood is up next and, despite being down in 14th, we’re 5 points off the play-offs. Perhaps that sums the division up – pretty much everyone isn’t far off the top.

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