The FA Cup returned, as the Clarets travelled to Hertfordshire once again, to face Ware. To open preseason, the Clarets suffered a 3-0 defeat but, Robbie will be hoping that his side have a more positive result. An exciting game brought 6 goals, as both sides netted 3 and booked in a replay for Monday night.
Robbie had an enforced change in goal, as Josh Oluwayemi’s suspension had started, seeing Jacob Marsden start in goal. Eze Ebuozeme returned too, following the serving of his suspension last weekend. He replaced Adam Mills, with Mo Dabre being pushed out to the left-hand side. A change out on the right saw Josh Castiglione drop to the bench, with newly crowned Grenada international Jermaine Francis coming back into the side. The final change saw Mo Bettamer lead the line, replacing Callum Jones. Jones was amongst the substitutes, joined by Mills, Barnum-Bobb, Hockey, Watts and Castiglione. The final substitutes was Cameron James, who returned to a Claret side for the first time since the playoff game last season.
The Clarets got the game underway, as they started their FA Cup journey for the 23/24 campaign. It was almost an instant impact on return for Jermaine Francis, as the newly crowned Grenada international struck the post, after Charlue Ruff fed him in with just 15 seconds on the clock. The hosts them came up the other end, as they got a chance of their own. The ball bounced through, and Ennin picked it up and drove at the Chelmsford defence. He looked to use Dave Winfield, as he tried to bend his effort round the defender but sent his effort wide of Jacob Marsden’s goal.
Ware took the lead, just 15 minutes into the game. It was a mistake in the middle of the park by the Clarets, as Liam Dulson was slipped through. He came one on one with Winfield and was able to fire his effort through the legs of the skipper and past Marsden, to give Ware the lead. Falling behind, the Clarets looked to come and get back into the game. Some silky skill in midfield saw Samir Carruthers teed up by Charlie Ruff. It was a good effort, but Ware keeper Freddie Burbridge was able to palm it away, before claiming the ball ahead of the oncoming Mo Dabre. However, a few minutes later the Clarets did have their goal. A counterattack broke, after Eze Ebuzoeme won the ball back in the midfield. Carruthers rushed forward, finding Francis on the wide. He switched the play to Ben Brookes, who delivered beautifully to the head of Francis, who headed home on his return from international duty.
More Clarets chances came, as we ticked towards the end of the half. Carruthers played a great ball over the top, as Mo Bettamer brought it down. He struck a fierce effort, bringing a great save and a corner to the Clarets. Carruthers and Brookes went across, and it was the latter who delivered. Charlie Ruff rose highest, as he flicked goalwards and wheeled away to celebrate sending the Clarets into the lead. There was a deflection from David Sota, but Charlie Ruff had claimed it, to continue his fine form. With the lead, the referee brought the sides in for half time, with Robbie Simpson’s side taking the lead late on.
HALF TIME: WFC 1-2 CCFC
Ware got the second half underway, as they were in search of a goal to draw themselves level. They searched early on, but the Clarets defence stayed firm, denying Ware any clear chances. Liam Dulson tried his luck, but was shut up, as the Clarets looked to punish. That they did, as doubled their lead midway through the second half. Some excellent work on the edge f the box saw Anthony Wordsworth wind up, seeing his effort saved well. Ben Brookes trooped over, taking the ball to deliver. Another superb delivery saw Callum Jones rise highest, with a great save following, before Dave Winfield was on hand to head in his first of the season.
Ware were not out of the game, as they did not give up. Ofori was causing trouble for Mo Dabre, which saw the midfielder bring him down. Joel Jacobs stepped up, and struck a deceiving free kick, as he beat Jacob Marsden at is near post, with the keeper expecting a cross. Just like that, Joel Jacobs fired the tie back to life, as the hosts were positive that they could level this game up. The resilient Ware did just that, as with the last kick of the game, the replay was confirmed. A mazy run from Ofori saw him charge into the box, laying the ball to Jack Dreyer. He swung a boot at it, as his effort clipped the post and nestled into the back of the net. Ware went wild, as they confirmed a replay against the Clarets.
FULL TIME: WFC 3-3 CCFC
Marsden (GK), Brookes, Wordsworth (Watts 72’), Winfield (C), Ebuzoeme, Dabre, Bettamer (Jones 62’), Carruthers, Jenkins, Francis, Ruff (Hockey 83’)
Unused subs: James, Mills, Barnum-Bobb, Castiglione
Goal: Francis 30’, Ruff 45+1’, Winfield 64’
Assists: Brookes 30’, 45+1’, 64’
Burbidge (GK), Sota, Jacobs, Hahn, Furlong, Rumens (C), Dreyer, Moncur, Dulson, Ofori, Ennin
Unused subs: Kay, Nightingale, Chapps, Nche, Rose, Ford, Walsh (Unsure on Ware substitutes)
Goals: Dulson 16’, Jacobs 76’, Dreyer 90+7’
Assists: Ennin 16’, Ofori 90+7’
Words By Josh Lowe
Cover image by Roger Robinson Photography