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Saturday, April 07, 2018

Preview: Hereford vs Chesham United



Mark Jones with this preview:

So, panic averted with five wins on the bounce, if you factor in the Ewyas Harold County Cup game, following 'the blip' in Norfolk and Hampshire. However, despite Easter Monday's excellent result at Redditch, four points clear with a game in hand but with six still to play is an equation that can, even at this late stage, deliver hiccups. Hereford entertain a Chesham United side today at 3pm who could give the Bulls a fright if the hosts aren't on their game from the start. 


The Generals won't be troubling the play-offs unless there's an earthquake in Slough sometime soon (obvious punchline here about several million pounds of improvements, please desist), but they've enjoyed a successful campaign and can't be underestimated. Other than a recent mauling at the hands of in-form Weymouth, and a narrow loss at Slough, they've been generally (ha!) pretty solid, and will be a tough nut to crack in front of what's anticipated to be another big Saturday Edgar Street crowd.

For Chesham, 39-year old striker Jefferson Louis is their highest scorer this season, netting 19 league goals so far. Chesham is his 36th club of his career, which include spells at Forest Green, Oxford United and Wrexham.


As for the home team, Ryan Green's three-match suspension doesn't kick in until the Hitchin game (phew), and Dara O'Shea could keep the Welshman company in the centre of defence. Pete Beadle's main headache in terms of who starts defensively may well be at left back, with Cameron Pring threatening to make the position his own on the basis of recent performances, but James Bowen a more than satisfactory option should the boss see fit. 

Rob Purdie seems to be growing into the season as it reaches its autumn (no comment about parallels with his career), with an influential display in the aforementioned Easter Monday game capped by a quite sublime ball into the box for the goal that killed the match off. There is, of course, the usual quite preposterous competition for places up top. Lance Smith would currently be difficult to drop, and a certain top goalscorer will also be hoping for a start. 

Whoever Mr Beadle goes with, the team will, as ever, have the potential to score goals, and a full-strength defence will hopefully remove the possibility of gifting the opposition a goal or two, as long as Greener can find it within himself to actually stay on the pitch for 90 minutes. Win this and we're starting to look not too far off. Lose it and Fergie's unsavoury thing about bottoms may come into play. 

In the reverse fixture back in December, Hereford struck late to seal the three points, scoring twice in injury time. Jamie Bird lashed in a 25-yarder before half-time but the hosts equalised in the second-period through Matt Bevans. Yet, in the 92nd minute as the game looked to be heading for a draw, Lance Smith headed home, before Bird fired in a third on the break.

Elsewhere, and as has so often been the case in the past, super Gavin Williams could mastermind something tomorrow that would be helpful to a certain football club in Hereford - his Merthyr Town side entertain second-placed King's Lynn.