LiveBLUEBIRDS LIVE: St Albans City 1 Chippenham Town 0

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Summary

  • FULL-TIME: St Albans City 1 Chippenham Town 0
  • John Frendo's first half strike sees off the Bluebirds
  • Dan Barnes reports from Clarence Park

9:43pm

And that brings proceedings to an end at Clarence Park.

The Bluebirds made a better fist of it in the second period and definitely gave their promotion-chasing hosts a strern examination after half-time.

Chippenham perhaps deserved more from a battling performance and Lee Phillips' agonising miss was their biggest chance to get an equaliser.

Don't forget to pick up this week's Gazette and Herald for reaction to tonight's game. Follow us on twitter @gazsport

9:38pm

ST ALBANS CITY 1 CHIPPENHAM TOWN 0

9:35pm

Griffin goes for goal with a speculative snapshot but the effort is wide of the mark. Time running out here at St Albans

9:31pm

Another chance comes the Saints' way, with Kalozci's strike held by John

9:28pm

Lowe isn't far off with a shot on the turn

9:28pm

Last roll of the dice - Corey King comes on for Bryan Smith

9:27pm

Dean lays the ball off for Hopper to have a shot on goal but his effort is comfortably parried by Bastock

9:24pm

A ball is looped over the Chippenham back line and the flag stays down against St Albans' Jamal Lowe.

The striker smacks an effort that flies into the side-netting

9:19pm

Luke Hopper comes on for Lee Phillips

9:17pm

There's just under 20 minutes left to play at Clarence Park and St Albans lead 1-0.

Chippenham are carrying much more of a threat now but they've still got plenty of work to do to fashion an equaliser

9:14pm

Smith is booked for catching Frendo late. Some great play-acting from the Saints striker to make sure his opponent picked up a yellow

9:11pm

James Guthrie comes on for Tyrone Leigh. He'll go the left wing, with Monks moving back to left-back

9:10pm

Dean slides in Phillips with a superb slide-rule pass and the striker goes down as he's challenged by Ward but referee Lee Forrester waves away the shouts for a penalty.

Meanwhile, there's handbags between Bryan Smith and St Albans' Frendo off the ball

9:06pm

Frendo sparks to life again and goes for goal in a flash but again, the goalscorer is off-target

9:05pm

Full-back Chappell goes for goal with a fiercly-hit long-range free kick but John gathers towards his body

9:03pm

GLORIOUS change goes begging for the Bluebirds! McClennan's smart ball plays Rob Dean into the box and midfielder goes for the top corner but keeper Bastock produces a superb save to tip the ball onto the crossbar! 

McClennan is alert and hooks the ball back into the area where the back-peddling Phillips knocks over the bar with the goal at his mercy. 

To be kind to the Chippenham striker, he was off-balance, but it could easily have been 1-1

9:00pm

It's a more positive start to the half from the Bluebirds, whilst the referee and his assistant have had both benches up in arms with a few suspect decisions!

Then out of nothing, Frendo gets on the end of a free-kick and goes for the far corner with a controlled effort, that rolls narrowly wide of the post

8:57pm

From a Monks' free-kick, Tindle has a shot blocked before McClennan sees two efforts charged down

8:55pm

The Saints' Hall goes on a fine run and whips a dangerous ball into the area but Henry can't get past Harley Purnell to apply the finish

8:52pm

St Albans' Tom Ward is booked for chopping down Joe McClennan

8:49pm

St Albans get us underway for the second period

8:49pm

8:47pm

The rain is teeming down as Chippenham emerge first for the second half

8:37pm

And that brings the first half action to a close. The play-off chasing hosts have created all the chances but they've failed to take them all and lead by just the single goal.

It's taken the Bluebirds time to grow into this game and they haven't really carried much of an attacking threat thus far.

But Collier has options on the bench and will know that his side are more than capable of hitting back in the second period

8:34pm

ST ALBANS CITY 1 CHIPPENHAM TOWN 0

8:32pm

And Chippenham's best chance of the game presents itself.

Phillips gets on the end of a long ball and acrobatically goes for goal with a volley but his effort flies across the face of the net, with keeper Bastock despairing

8:31pm

Frendo has been in the wars contending with Tindle and has a bloody mouth. The striker is clearly frustrated and in the next phase of play, catches Oakley with a late challenge

8:29pm

And then there's another golden opportunity for the hosts but John comes out on top in an individual battle with Frendo!

The striker is clean through on goal and goes for a cheeky measured chip over the head of the onrushing Bluebirds keeper but John reaches high and gathers the ball with both hands!

8:28pm

And pinball in the box almost results in a second for the hosts! A host of bodies are scrambling and a Chippenham defender pumps a clearance into the body of St Albans' James Kaloczi.

John shows expert reactions though to dive down to his right and prevent the rebound from arrowing into the net.

Up the other end, Lee Phillips nicks the ball off Chappell and sees his shot blocked before McClennan skews the rebound wide 

8:26pm

The Saints' Lee Chappell drives forward and puts a low cross into the box, with no-one to really aim at, but the full-back's delivery causes chaos and John has to turn it behind for a corner

8:24pm

John firmly punches away a corner and the clearance falls to Henry, who goes for goal from the edge of the box but drags his effort wide of the mark

8:22pm

A fine bit of invention there from the Bluebirds' top-scorer as he did well to get his shot on target but it didn't really trouble the home side

8:21pm

Alan Griffin goes for goal with a speculative volley from range but his effort is comfortable for veteran keeper Paul Bastock

8:20pm

Aaron Oakley has a bit of a problem after sliding in to challenge Henry. But after some treatment, he looks fine to carry on

8:14pm

There have been a few instances where the Bluebirds have worked the ball quickly with some neat, intricate passing moves but the final ball has always just failed to find its target.

Meanwhile, the pace of Nwokeji has been causing the Chippenham back line all kinds of problems and St Albans are looking for the long ball over the top all the time

8:10pm

And St Albans almost make it 2-0. Chippenham are caught out by a quick throw and James Comley picks up the ball in the area but Ben John rushes out bravely to prevent the midfielder finding the net

8:08pm

On the balance of play, the hosts probably deserve their opener. A throw in is worked down the line and Henry cuts back away from goal before whipping a cross the far post.

The winger's delivery drops over the head of John Frendo but the striker produces a fine finish, volleying into the bottom corner with his outstretched left foot

8:07pm

ST ALBANS CITY 1 CHIPPENHAM TOWN 0

8:06pm

From a Saints corner, the Bluebirds somehow leave the biggest man on the pitch, the hosts' Ben Martin, unmarked. 

The defender connects with a header but nods wide of the mark

8:01pm

It's the hosts that are exerting all of the early pressure,

Meanwhile, a superb last-ditch clearance from Tindle prevents Nwokeji setting up Frendo for a tap-in

8:00pm

St Albans hit the bar this time via Mark Nwokeji but the striker was well offside and the linesman's flag comes up

7:57pm

And the Saints' prolific striker John Frendo takes it, curling an effort against the base of the right post with a side-footed effort!

7:56pm

St Albans win a free-kick in a dangerous-looking position

7:55pm

7:51pm

The Saints threaten early on and should really be ahead! Full-back Howard Hall gets to the byline and drills a ball across the face of goal.

Winger Chris Henry attempts to flick it goalwards but just can't get the right contact to apply the finish

7:48pm

It's an interesting formation from the Bluebirds early on, with youngster Leigh at left back and Pete Monks operating on the left wing

7:47pm

Chippenham kick us off, going from right to left

7:46pm

Fashion faux pas!

Chippenham clearly brought their usual all-blue strip but the match referee mustn't have been happy - St Albans wear blue shorts - and the Bluebirds are all wearing borrowed red and black shorts!

7:44pm

And out they come!

7:42pm

The two teams are into the tunnel at Clarence Park

7:41pm

7:41pm

7:39pm

After an all-too-brief warm-up, the visitors have headed back in to the changing rooms.

Don't forget to stick with Bluebirds Live for all of the action as it happens here at St Albans

7:32pm

We're working through things at breakneck speed this evening!

Chippenham boss Collier has rung the changes for this evening's tricky assignment in Hertfordshire, and it looks as though it may be a defensively-minded line-up for the Bluebirds.

Harley Purnell, Joe McClennan, Lee Phillips and Tyron Leigh all come in to the starting line-up whilst midfielder Jake Simpson is involved in the squad for the first time 

7:30pm

ST ALBANS CITY: Paul Bastock, Howard Hall, Lee Chappell, Ram Marwa, Tom Ward, Ben Martin (c), James Kaloczi, James Comley, John Frendo, Mark Nwokeji, Chris Henry.

SUBS: Jamal Lowe, Peter Dean, Elliot Bailey, Danny Greem, Richard Graham

7:29pm

CHIPPENHAM TOWN SIDE TO PLAY ST ALBANS: Ben John, Harley Purnell, Pete Monks, Bryan Smith, Aaron Oakley, Greg Tindle, Joe McClennan, Rob Dean, Alan Griffin (c), Lee Phillips, Tyron Leigh.

SUBS: Luke Hopper, James Guthrie, Jake Simpson, Corey King, Kent Kauppinen

7:27pm

Tonight's opponents St Albans meanwhile, exerted themselves in a crunch meeting with fellow promotion rivals Bideford last weekend, with the Saints seeing a nine-match unbeaten run coming to an end as they were beaten 1-0.

For the Bluebirds, it's all about bouncing back from that disappointing defeat at lowly Bashley last Tuesday evening

7:25pm

But it looks as though Chippenham may have been delayed travelling this afternoon as they obly emerged from the dressing room around five minutes ago - that won't help their preparations

7:24pm

There aren't too many Calor League Premier Division sides that opt to play their midweek fixtures on a Monday night and Mark Collier's Bluebirds will expect to be the fresher of the two sides after their trip to league leaders Hemel Hempstead Town last weekend was rained off.

7:23pm

As usual, get involved with Bluebirds Live this season and have your say on Chippenham Town's fortunes on and off the pitch.
Get in touch via Twitter using the hashtag #bluebirdslive, comment in the box below or e-mail dbarnes@newswilts.co.uk – but please keep your thoughts clean!

7:23pm

Good evening from Hertfordshire! Bluebirds Live has made the trip to St Albans tonight as Chippenham Town are in Monday night action at promotion-chasing St Albans City.

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