BLUEBIRDS LIVE: Chippenham Town 1 St Albans City 1
This live event has finished
- FULL-TIME: Chippenham Town 1 St Albans City 1
- Corey King scores a last-gasp equaliser to rescue a point for Chippenham
- Iain Harvey suffers a recurrence of a hamstring injury ten minutes into his comeback
- Dan Barnes reports from Hardenhuish Park
Thanks for following Bluebirds Live this afternoon.
Log on to gazetteandherald.co.uk/sport later this evening for Mark Collier's reaction to today's draw.
Don't forget to join us again on Tuesday night as Chippenham Town take on Arlesey Town and there's more Bluebirds news, reaction and pitcures in next week's Gazette & Herald.
Follow us on Twitter @gazsport
Chippenham show a bit of character to come back and clinch a point at home to play-off chasing St Albans.
The hosts enjoyed some healthy spells of possession and were probably slightly aggrieved to fall behind, despite the visitors' Frendo passing up a host of chances to take the lead, but King's late equaliser ensures that Collier's side hang on to share of the spoils.
CHIPPENHAM TOWN 1 ST ALBANS CITY 1
It didn't look as though Chippenham would have a response to going a goal behind but youngster King pops up with his first goal for the club in the 89th minute.
We're in to added time now
The Bluebirds get their equaliser! Guthrie jinks past a St Albans defender superbly in the box and digs out a low cross to the far post, leaving substitute Corey King to side-foot home
CHIPPENHAM TOWN 1 ST ALBANS CITY 1
St Albans break and almost kill the game with a second goal.
Full-back Chappell goes on a jinking run to the byling and cuts the ball back to Frendo, but the striker can only direct his finish high and wide of the target!
And from a Guthrie corner, Dean rises highest and heads goalwards but keeper Bastock holds on to the effort well - good chance!
Corner to Chippenham
Rob Dean was also booked for shoving James Comley in the build up to the free-kick that led to the goal
There had been a few warning signs that St Albans' Frendo could nick a goal and from a set-piece, the striker has done it to put the Bluebirds behind at home.
There's around ten minutes remaining for Collier's men to rescue something here
Corey King comes on for Lloyd Macklin
St Albans make the breakthrough. A Comley free-kick is lofted forward from midway into the Chippenham area and Martin heads down into the danger area. John Frendo is unmarked after losing his marker and calmly toe-pokes past John to make it 1-0
CHIPPENHAM TOWN 0 ST ALBANS CITY 1
Just over a quarter of an hour to go here at Hardenhuish Park, with neither side yet to make a breakthrough
Matt Taylor plays the ball through to striker Frendo, who looks offside but the flag stays down.
Under pressure, the Saints man can only drag his effort wide as the Bluebirds breathe a sigh of relief
But up the other end, another St Albans chance goes begging. Frendo finds himself one-on-one with John but slides his finish wide of the far post when he should really have scored
That's a big let-off for the visitors as there were only three players in the half - it should really have been a red
McClennan clears the danger from a corner and the ball goes all the way through to Phillips. The striker is in on goal and gets tugged back by Ram Marwa, who was the last man.
The crowd are screaming for a red card but referee Russell only produces a booking, deciding it wasn't an obvious goal-scoring opportunity!
At the other end, St Albans go close again! Jamal Lowe's cross findds Keenleyside, whose strike is deflected narrowly wide
Pete Monks takes it but his left-footed effort floats over the crossbar
It's a free-kick in a promising position here
Macklin goes on a superb run and gets all the way to the edge of the area before he's chopped down by St Alban's Martin, who picks up a booking
Guthrie is booked for sliding in on Keenleyside from behind
Greg Tindle tangles with Frendo and both players are given a talking to
It's a really frantic start to the second half, with the ball travelling back and forth and neither side really getting a foot on it
St Albans exert some early pressure, ending with Frendo having a shot deflected for a corner
And the Bluebirds get us back underway
St Albans are the first side to emerge for the second half
And that brings the first half to a close. It's been far from a classic, with very little in the way of goal-scoring opportunites enjoyed by either side.
Joe McClennan has tested keeeper Paul Bastock at one end whilst at the other end, John Frendo has had the visitors' best chance of an opener.
Will this game open up a bit more in the second period? Stick with Bluebirds Live to find out!
CHIPPENHAM TOWN 0 ST ALBANS CITY 0
Chippenham lose the ball in their own half, allowing David Keenleyside to pump a cross to the far post but it's just out of reach for James Comley
Just four minutes remaining of the first period - just where has the half gone?
It's still goalless at Hardenhuish Park
The Bluebirds appeal for another penalty. Guthrie blocks a clearance and the ball loops back into the box.
Phillips looks to latch on to the rebound and goes down under the attentions of Ben Martin but referee Russell is unmoved
Guthrie is sent crashing in to the wall after tangling with Howard Hall but luckily, gets straight back up and runs it off
McClennan has a shot blocked and then Dean has a go from just outside the area - his strike is deflected out for a corner
Things are getting a little bit scrappy at present but both sides look dangerous when their attacking players break forward into a bit of space
St Albans go close to taking the lead! The ball is worked through the middle of the pitch and Frendo goes for the bottom corner but his strike curls narrowly wide
But it's a bit more decisive from McClennan this time as he beats Ben Martin for pace and powers a left-footed strike goalwards, which is beaten away by keeper Bastock
McClennan and Macklin have linked up quite well early on but both players have just been crowded out when they've burst into the St Albans box.
Sitll, not a bad start from the home side
Rob Dean brings a save out of Bastock but the linesman's flag is up
SUBSTITUTION: Chippenham take no risks with Iain Harvey and he comes off for Bryan Smith
Looks like bad news for the Bluebirds. Harvey is down early on and Bryan Smith is getting stripped to come on.
So unfortunate for the midfielder on his return from injury
At the other end, St Albans' Jamal Lowe is played in but Ben John comes off his line and saves well
McClennan wins the ball back in midfield and plays in Phillips with a reverse pass but the striker doesn't get his shot away, allowing the Saints defence to recover
Pete Monks and Guthrie combine on the left flank, with the latter flashing a dangerous ball towards the near post but it's gathered by St Albans keeper Paul Bastock
Frantic start from the two sides, with McClennan having a slight shout for a penalty as he battles with Lee Chappell in the box but referee Mark Russell says there's no foul
It looks like a slight change in system for the Bluebirds early on, with Macklin playing down the right flank and Joe McClennan in the hole behind Phillips
And we're underway at Hardenhuish Park!
St Albans will kick us off, going from right-to-left
The two teams are on their way out at Chippenham
They may have had a bit of a break, but Collier's men have gone six games without a win in the league.
There's just over 15 minutes 'til kick-off at Hardenhuish Park. Stick with us for all of the action as it happens!
Chippenham came out on the right end of a seven-goal thriller in this fixture last season.
Tom Knighton came off the bench to grab the winner on that day, with the Bluebirds winning 4-3.
One other absentee from the Chippenham squad is young defender Tyron Leigh - we understand he's unwell and misses out today.
Any eagle-eyed Premier League fans might recognise a name on the St Albans bench; 26-year-old defender Kerrea Gilbert signed for St Albans yesterday.
He started his career at Arsenal and has played in the UEFA Champions League.
ST ALBANS CITY: Paul Bastock, Howard Hall, Lee Chappell, Ram Marwa, Ben Martin (c), James Kaloczi, David Keenleyside, James Comley, John Frendo, Jamal Lowe, Richard Graham.
SUBS: Mark Nwokeji, Nathan Ferguson, Elliott Bailey, Kerrea Gilbert, Matt Taylor.
CHIPPENHAM TOWN TEAM TO PLAY ST ALBANS: Ben John, Harley Purnell, Pete Monks, Iain Harvey, Aaron Oakley, Greg Tindle, Joe McClennan, Rob Dean, Lloyd Macklin, Lee Phillips (c), James Guthrie.
SUBS: Corey King, Tom Knighton, Bryan Smith, Jon Beeden, Callum Wright.
Today's line-ups are in: Phillips returns up front and will captain the side, partnered by Lloyd Macklin.
Bryan Smith drops to the bench in place of Iain Harvey, who also goes straight into Mark Collier's starting line-up on his return from injury.
The two sides are out conducting their pre-match warm-ups. We'll bring you this afternoon's team news as soon as we get it!
The Hertfordshire outfit triumphed 4-0 at Frome last weekend and their attack is spearheaded by the prolific John Frendo, who was last season's top-scorer during his spell with Hitchin Town and has hit 15 league goals already this campaign.
So the Bluebirds are set to kick off the New Year with a difficult assignment on their hands – today's opponents St Albans are seventh in the Calor League Premier Division, just two points off the play-off positions.
The positive from the Bluebirds' enforced winter break is that a handful of injuries have had the time to clear up – striker Lee Phillips and midfielder Iain Harvey have recovered from hamstring problems, and should return today, whilst Jack Allward was also back in training this week as he looks to recover from a dislocated shoulder.
The only real absentee for Chippenham this afternoon will be skipper Alan Griffin, who is serving a one-match ban for his sending off against Hemel Hempstead Town last month.
So it feels like a long, long time since Chippenham have been in action - not since last year, in fact!
The last time Mark Collier's men ran out, they conceded an injury-time equaliser to draw 3-3 at home against local rivals Frome Town on Boxing Day.
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As usual, get involved with Bluebirds Live this season and have your say on Chippenham Town's fortunes on and off the pitch.
The January floods have subsided enough for Chippenham Town to finally kick off 2014 at home to St Albans City this afternoon - there's even some warm winter sun covering the majority of the playing surface!
As always, we'll be bringing you live updates of all the action as it happens.
Good afternoon from Hardenhuish Park. Bluebirds Live is back!
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