After a week without football, the first in a while, the Clarets returned to the Melbourne Stadium as Welling made the trip from Southeast London. The clubs met back in August, where a Simeon Jackson brace got us over the line along with a good penalty save from Jacob Marsden. The same could not be repeated back in Essex, seeing the three points taken back by Welling. A questionable performance from the man in the middle did not make it easy for the Clarets, who did give it their best efforts.
After some stunning performances from the bench last weekend, they all made their way into the starting line-up. Cameron James recovered from his knock he took at Ebbsfleet and makes his way back into the team. Elsewhere, as stated, all 3 of Lodovica, Jackson and Da Costa came back into the line-up. This saw Eduino Vaz, Tom Blackwell, Callum Jones and Arjanit Krasniqi all dropped out of the starting eleven, with Blackwell and Jones joining Jacob Marsden, Finn Wilkes and Freddie Hockey amongst the substitutes.
We got underway, back in Essex for the first time in a while as Reece Grant kicked us off. A fantastic effort came out of nothing really as the ball was at the feet of Reece Grant who played it to Harry Lodovica. He had nothing on and attempted to loop an effort up and over Myles Roberts, only to see the ball cannon back off the crossbar, less than 2 minutes in. With 10 minutes played, not many great chances had gone either way, with Lodovica hitting the bar the highlight. Chelmsford survived a massive scare just after 10 minutes played as Dave Winfield’s back pass went wayward of Eddie Beach, seeing it miss the goal before the keeper managed to send it out for a throw in. After the 20-minute mark, Chelmsford were awarded a free kick and a chance to deliver. The ball was played in perfectly and a beautiful touch by Dave Winfield was ruined by the offside flag being up, expunging the chance. Just after the halfway point in the half, Dave Winfield was involved again, being booked for seemingly nothing but could have possibly talked his way in there.
Another good chance went the way of the Clarets, just after the half an hour mark. Ochieng passed across to Barnum-Bobb who found Da Costa and he played a low ball in across the box which missed all narrowly and ended in the keepers arms. Chelmsford continued to keep the pressure up as the ball fell the way of Cameron James who delivered a great ball with unfortunately just evaded Lodovica and Grant who were lurking at the back post. Welling looked to get some chances themselves, but only saw their cross go high and wide of the box. Another questionable booking for the Clarets after Jamie Sendles-White kicked the ball at Harry Lodovica and after some im sure not so kind words the referee decided to book them both. The next chance involved Harry as the ball was lofted over the Welling back line and he burst through and took the ball round the keeper. The ball went too wide for a shot so he sent it to Da Costa who gave it to Barnum-Bobb and he crossed, only for it to go far too high for anyone to meet it. Minutes after, and yet again it was Lodovica at the forefront of play after he outmuscled Kodi Lyons-Foster and had time to take a shot. Another great effort but it just about sailed over the bar. The referee then brought the first half to an end, seeing the 2 teams go in goalless.
Welling got us underway for the second half, were Chelmsford started well, coming forward after Welling’s poor kick off. After just 2 minutes in to the second half, Welling were awarded a penalty. The ball was delivered in and Eddie Beach reached for the ball, but missed it and fell onto Welling striker, seeing him tumble to the ground. Referee Michael Robertson-Tant hesitated but pointed to the spot. Taylor Maloney stepped up and scored the penalty, making it 1-0 to the Wings. Before the game could be resumed, Adam Drew received a red card, as the head of recruitment was clearly unhappy about the terrible penalty decision, minutes earlier. With their tails up, the Clarets came forward and Reece Grant chased down the ball and played it into Kai Yearn. He looked to bend the ball towards the far post before it was deflected behind for a corner, which came to nothing. Chelmsford kept the pressure up with some great play by Simeon Jackson seeing him 1 on 1 with the keeper, only for Myles Roberts to get down well and save. Just before the hour mark, Robbie turned to his first substitute. Khale Da Costa left the field, with Tom Blackwell coming on in his place.
Welling kept up their good play and a well worked free kick brandished a good shooting chance, however it was blazed way over the bar. Kai Yearn danced around the Welling midfielders and sent an excellent ball to Jazzi Barnum-Bobb but, he sent the ball back to Cameron James who tried too much and lost the ball. Welling’s counterattack was soon thwarted after some composed defending from Frankie Terry. Chelmsford continued to look for the equaliser and when Cameron James found space, he delivered well straight to Lodovica’s head, but he could only head wide. Welling seemingly looked to take a defensive route with the Clarets up and committing many men towards to Welling box. After the ball was worked all the way round the box, Ochieng could only fire his effort over the bar. Another change was made by Robbie just after the halfway point the half, seeing Reece Grant make way for Callum Jones. Minutes later, our first substitute Tom Blackwell nearly scored a goal in the style of Eduino Vaz’s effort against York as his cross was not far away from ending up in the back of the net, just clipping the bar before going behind for a goal kick.
The Clarets were still on top, having numerous chances. Cameron James was fouled just inside the Welling half and the resulting free kick was headed down by Dave Winfield and fell to Henry Ochieng on the edge of the box, only for him to send his effort over the bar. With just 5 minutes to go, Robbie rolled the dice once more as Harry Lodovica was replaced by Freddie Hockey. With the seconds of normal time trickling away, Welling got a corner. The corner was wasted as the referee indicated 5 minutes to be added on, leading to confusion around the ground as to how little had been added on. With Welling continuing their timewasting antics, chances for the Clarets were scarce. With the 5 minutes over, Cameron James managed to send the ball in and Callum Jones sent it toward goal, only for Myles Roberts to produce a wonderful, match winning save as the referee brought the game to an end. The Wings took the 3 points back with them.