Vauxhall Road is Saturday’s destination as the Clarets face Hemel Hempstead Town in the Vanarama National League South.
City go into this weekend’s fixture looking to recapture their form following defeat at home to Hungerford Town last time out.
Ryan Seager’s brace in the second half dealt a blow to the Clarets as they suffered a 7th defeat in a row.
“We’ve got eight cup finals now,” echoed manager Robbie Simpson in his post-match interview after full-time. “eight games, 24 points, we’ve got a game in hand over Bath [City] and we need to capitalise on that.
“We’ve got two teams below us that we need to keep below us. We need to keep believing.”
A win for City tomorrow could see them move above Bath and Tonbridge Angels into 17th and create a four-point gap over bottom-of-the-table Welling United, if other results also go their way.
Tickets are available to be purchased in advance and on the day and supporters can buy theirs by following this link.
Last time out…
The Clarets suffered a Non-League Day defeat as a Ryan Seager brace sealed a 2-0 victory for Hungerford Town.
In a good start for City, Tom Blackwell had a good early chance following a knock-down from Charlie Sheringham, but he couldn’t get the touch to take the ball past Luke Cairney.
The next chance saw Dara Dada drive into the box before pulling back for Sheringham to see a powerful effort well saved by Cairney.
The second half began in the opposite fashion to the first 45, with Hungerford playing more on the front foot.
Ten minutes into the half the visitors took the lead, as Ryan Seager buried an effort from distance into the far bottom corner beyond debutant Kai McKenzie-Lyle.
Despite City coming more into the half from then and looking to find an equaliser, the Crusaders bagged their second midway through the half.
A long throw-in was sent in and Seager was there to apply a simple finish to add his and his side’s second of the game.
With 10 minutes to go, City almost clawed a goal back, as substitute Matt Rush fired a threatening shot at goal from distance which was beaten away well by Cairney.
That proved to be the final real chance of the game and the fixture ended in defeat for Robbie Simpson’s side.
Last time out, Hemel Hempstead Town were down in 17th just two places above City going into the fixture at the EMG Inspire Stadium.
This weekend’s hosts have experienced an upturn in form under former Oxford City manager Mark Jones and currently sit in 12th place with an outside chance of finishing in a play-off spot.
With two wins and three losses in their last five games, Hemel are only four points off Dulwich Hamlet who currently occupy that final play-off position, with the Hamlet struggling for form themselves.
It would be a big ask for the Tudors with Chippenham Town, Havant & Waterlooville, Hungerford and St Albans City all above them & fighting for a place in the play-offs, but the belief is there.
A win for them on Saturday could see them one point off 7th if results go their way.
Charlee Hughes looks to be the hosts dangerman this weekend.
The former Maldon & Tiptree striker joined Hemel in December 2021 and has scored six goals in his first 10 appearances.
Hughes, 25, featured for the Jammers in City’s 2-1 win at the Wallace Binder Ground in the BBC Essex Senior Cup, receiving a straight red card for a dangerous tackle on goalkeeper Jacob Marsden just before half-time.
The striker has also featured for for Brentwood Town, Wealdstone and Concord Rangers during his career.
Our last meeting…
Clarets 1-2 Hemel Hempstead Town, Saturday 13th November 2021
City were beaten 2-1 by Hemel Hempstead Town despite a late fightback at the EMG Inspire Stadium.
The visitors took the lead just after the 10-minute mark with some one-two play down the right being capped off by Alfie Cerulli firing a low shot past James Dillon into the bottom left corner.
On the hunt for an equaliser, City almost had a chance to draw level later in the half after some link-up play between Zaid Al-Hussaini and Tom Dickens.
A pass from the former led to a cross from the latter which Nick Hayes and Jack Westbrook fumbled, almost giving Simeon Jackson the chance to score but the loose ball was cleared.
Hemel would be the next to trade a blow in search of the next goal, with Sam Mantom firing into the side netting from close range following a cutback from Gus Scott-Morriss.
Over the remainder of the opening 45, both sides would force some half chances but neither tested the goalkeepers meaning the Tudors went in at the break ahead.
As they had done in the first, the Tudors bagged around 10 minutes into the second 45, with Craig Fasanmade picking up the ball and racing towards Dillon’s goal before calmly firing past the stopper.
It would be until 20 minutes from full-time that City forced a good chance to claw a goal back, with substitute Freddie Hockey drawing a strong save from Hayes to which Charlie Sheringham couldn’t apply the finish to the rebound.
City would get a goal back 15 minutes later as a free-kick was floated into a packed area and flicked off the crossbar before Adebola Oluwo headed home from close range.
With the Clarets pushing for a leveller, the side’s chances were improved shortly following the goal as Dominic Morgan-Griffiths was shown a straight red card for the visitors.
Despite being down to 10 men, Dillon produced two fine saves to keep the home side on the hunt for an equaliser, first from a one-on-one Dan Wilshart chance before Fasanmade’s follow-up.
The last chance for Robbie Simpson’s side came to Dave Winfield, who lashed at Hayes’ goal following a Callum Harrison corner, but the effort was saved and the game ended in defeat.
Where to follow the game…
The Club will be providing live minute-by-minute coverage of the game on Twitter (@OfficialClarets) using the hashtag #CCFC.
There will also be live audio commentary from Radio Clarets.
Post-match reports, highlights and interviews will be found on the club website, social media and ClaretsTV following the game.