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Barnard penalty defeats Bath City in Somerset

Chelmsford City completed a brilliant comeback after being 1-0 behind at half-time to win 2-1 at Bath City.

Second half strikes from Kudus Oyenuga and a Lee Barnard penalty secured a third consecutive victory after Ryan Case gave the hosts the lead.

Bath took the lead after five minutes as a freekick from the right was poorly cleared and Case struck past Sam Beasant with the aid of a deflection.

The Clarets continued to search throughout the first half for an equaliser but were forced to wait until the 51st-minute before levelling through Oyenuga’s low driven shot from Michael West’s knock-down.

Then, eighteen minutes after coming on as a substitute, Lee Barnard netted the winner from the spot after Michael Spillane was dragged down in the box by Marvin Morgan.

Chelmsford City boss Rod Stringer named another unchanged side as he went in search for a third straight victory in the Vanarama National League South, with Kane Haysman, Aaron Green, Max Porter and Shaun Batt all left out the squad for the trip to Somerset.

Following Tuesday’s embarrassing 5-2 defeat at home to Chippenham Town, Bath boss Gary Owers’ made four changes as Darren Jones, Billy Murphy, Nat Jarvis and Jamie Lucas were replaced by Dan Ball, Ryan Case, Nick McCootie and Marvin Morgan.

The home side took the lead after five minutes as a long free-kick forward from Bath City was weakly headed away and Ryan Case quickly shot past Sam Beasant at the near post with the assistance of a deflection.

Chelmsford almost levelled with the next chance of the game but a last-ditch block from Frankie Artus denied Kudus Oyenuga, while quick reactions from Michael Spillane cleared McCootie’s lob off the line after Beasant was left stranded.

The visitors thought they had equalised through Oyenuga’s overhead kick on 18 minutes, but the striker was deemed offside.

Chelmsford continued their pressure when Michael West found himself through however the City winger drilled his shot first-time at Luke Southwood. The clearance found its way to Anthony Church but the midfielder was unable to tap home close range as Case came sliding in.

The visitors had large claims for a foul when goalkeeper Southwood appeared to have handled the ball outside the area, but whistler Tom Reeves remained unmoved despite the loud appeals from the Clarets.

Christopher Dickson created another chance for the visitors as his run to the byline created space for Oyenuga, however the City striker glanced a header just wide of the post.

Michael West became the first player to enter the book when the City winger lunged in with his head on Frankie Artus. The hosts had loud calls for the Claret player to be dismissed for a headbutt, however referee Tom Reeves saw it as just a coming together between the two players.

Oyenuga skipped into the box immediately as the second half began, however Dan Ball was on-hand to block the striker inside the area.

The City striker did not left his earlier miss affect him as he fired home at the next chance. Craig Braham-Barrett’s driving run allowed him to drill a cross to West who knocked the ball down to Oyenuga who rifled home.
Connor Lemonheigh-Evans should have restored the home side’s lead when he received the ball from Andy Watkins’ lay-off, however the Bath winger shot well over from close range.

A silly foul from Dan Ball gave Chelmsford a freekick out on the right as Barnard was wiped out. Substitute Jonny Giles curled a left-footed set-piece into the box and, as the ball bobbled through, Michael Spillane was dragged down by Marvin Morgan and whistler Tom Reeves pointed to the spot. Having won the initial free-kick, Barnard stepped up and slotted his spot-kick into the bottom left corner.

Having been shaken by Barnard’s penalty the hosts tried to get an equaliser, but Gary Owers’ side were forced to resort to long balls as the Clarets held on to win their third consecutive match in the League.

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