Cards aim for four in a row
10:47am, Thu 20th Aug 2015
Woking v Chester
Vanarama National League
3pm on Saturday 22 August 2015
Garry Hillâ€™s side have made a great start to the season, overcoming their opening day setbacks to record three successive wins, playing some very attractive football along the way. Now lying in fourth place, they can be expected to be tested strongly by unbeaten Chester on Saturday. Come down to the Laithwaite Community Stadium to cheer on the Cards to another victory!
Itâ€™s been a terrific achievement to have followed up the opening day defeat at Tranmere, and the awful injury to the Cardsâ€™ top striker, Scott Rendell, with successive 2-0 home wins over Bromley and Altrincham and then a fine 1-0 away win at Torquay United on Tuesday night.
The fact that no goals were conceded during those games highlights the solidity shown by the Woking defence, with the central partnership of Ismail Yakubu and Brian Saah looking superb, shielded by captain Mark Ricketts, allowing the creative talents of Keiran Murtagh, John Goddard and Joey Jones to flourish in midfield. Up front, new loan striker Dan Holman showed his quality in his debut against Altrincham, scoring one goal and making the other and receiving the â€˜man of the matchâ€™ award.
Unfortunately, his strike partner, Gez Sole, looks to have picked up a hamstring injury at Torquay, leaving the way open for one of Kadell Daniel, Bruno Andrade and Ben Pattie to claim a starting place.
The Blues, who finished in 12th place last season, look as though they will make more of a challenge for promotion this time round. They have begun well, with a 1-0 home win over Braintree on the opening day, followed by a 1-0 away win at FC Halifax, a 0-0 draw at Dover Athletic and a 1-1 draw at home to Cheltenham Town on Tuesday night.
Manager Steve Burr has made some promising signings this summer. Former Grimsby striker Ross Hannah joins John Rooney up front, while Burr was also pleased to add winger Jordan Chapell from Torquay United. Midfield reinforcements centred on former Southport captain Luke George and Tom Shaw from Alfreton Town, who played for Burr at Kidderminster Harriers. Left-back Johnny Hunt has joined from Wrexham and a major signing was that of highly-experienced Ian Sharps in central defence on his departure from Burton Albion. He will no doubt mentor the Bluesâ€™ very promising young centre back Ben Heneghan.
Over 65s and Students with NUS card Â£13
Donâ€™t forget that there are big savings from having a season ticket: itâ€™s not too late to apply!
Check out the great value hospitality offer in the Geoff Chapple Lounge for the first four home games: see the news item on 24 July.
Make sure you get your copy of the Clubâ€™s excellent 64-page matchday programme. Features include an interview with Brian Saah; â€˜quick fireâ€™ questions to Jake Cole; and an account of how the incredible crowdfunding appeal for Scott Rendell began and then went viral. Thereâ€™s also a look at whatâ€™s been going at other National League clubs; and news from the Cards Trust, plus match previews, reports and the usual superb match action photos.
LAST TIME WE MET
Chester 2 Woking 3
28 March 2015
The Cards battled against the elements in the first half but took the lead on the half hour mark when John Goddardâ€™s cross was deflected into the path of Scott Rendell, who reacted quickly to finish. On the stroke of half-time, though, loan keeper Michael Crowe was only able to parry Sean McConvilleâ€™s strike into the path of Craig Mahon, who grabbed the equaliser.
A turning point came in the 61st minute when Chester defender Kieran Charnock received a second caution for hauling down Kevin Betsy and, as the game opened up, Rendell nipped in again to make sure that Joey Jonesâ€™s header from a Yemi Odubade cross found the net. But Chester bounced back with a Ben Heneghan header in the 79th minute.
Five minutes later, though, Josh Payne netted the winner with a fantastic 25-yard volley, arguably the goal of the season.
The win was Wokingâ€™s sixth in seven games and left them in 6th place in the table, only a point off the play-off places.
Chester: Jon Worsnop, Ben Heneghan, Matty Brown, Kieran Charnock, Kingsley James, Ryan Higgins (Michael Kay 76), Brad Abbott (Craig Hobson 60), John Rooney, Craig Mahon, Sean McConville, Matty Hughes (Gareth Roberts 62)
Unused subs: Jon Viscosi, Tom Peers
Goals: Craig Mahon 44, Ben Heneghan 79
Woking: Michael Crowe, Mark Ricketts, Joey Jones, Brian Saah, Chris Arthur, John Goddard (Charles Banya 67), Josh Payne, Keiran Murtagh, Kevin Betsy, Scott Rendell, Yemi Odubade (Giuseppe Sole 74)
Unused subs: Andy Little, John Nutter, Emmanuel Oyeleke
Goals: Scott Rendell 29, 69, Josh Payne 84
The Cards are away at Boreham Wood on Saturday 29 August and then at home to Welling United at 3pm on Bank Holiday Monday (31 August). Donâ€™t forget on Saturday to book your place on the coach for the Boreham Wood trip.
Come on, you Cards!