Barbrook 47


WEYMOUTH’S sequence of four straight wins ended in a soaking-wet 1-0 loss at Chelmsford City in the Vanarama National League South.

Malachi Linton missed a one-on-one for Weymouth in the first half, before Finley Barbrook’s scorcher in the 47th minute handed the Clarets all three points.

Weymouth’s Charlie Rowan had a header cleared off the line late on, but the league’s meanest defence held on to maintain their play-off push, keeping the Terras in 14th.

Weymouth manager Bobby Wilkinson made just one change to the starting XI that began the 4-3 win over Hemel Hempstead last time out.

READ MORE: Chelmsford City 1-0 Weymouth - how it happened

Joe Cook has returned to Dorking after his loan expired, but top-scorer Ezio Touray was recalled. 

On the bench, Weymouth were hamstrung by injuries and suspensions, with goalkeeping coach Jason Matthews named alongside Dan Roberts, Keelan O'Connell and Elliott Bolton.

Callum Small lost his place, but new loan signing Nazir Bakrin featured for the first time since joining on a month's deal from League One side Charlton Athletic.

Despite their lofty position of fourth, Chelmsford possessed only the 16th-strongest home record in the division before kick-off.

And Weymouth showed signs of that record deteriorating further with an enterprising start, Rowan firing over on the half-volley in the second minute.

Weymouth pressed on to win their first corner, from which Harry Parsons drove into the box and picked out skipper Tom Bearwish who thumped an effort well over.

However, the Terras were forced into a change in the 19th minute when the unfortunate Touray picked up an injury, Roberts his replacement.

Chelmsford, who had only threatened with a couple of deep crosses until then, forced Gerard Benfield into his first major save 27 minutes in when Josh Castiglione exchanged passes with George Alexander and fired at goal.

Weymouth were then guilty of missing the biggest chance of the half, Linton denied in a one-on-one by home keeper Henry Gray.

Amid torrential rain, Linton’s chance heralded Weymouth’s best spell as Bearwish had a shot blocked but back came the hosts after weathering the storm.

Jermaine Francis saw a deflected effort go out for a corner before Luke Jenkins, ex-loanee at Weymouth from AFC Wimbledon, nodded over from a fourth successive corner.

Jenkins was immediately involved at the other end when he sliced a cross over the bar, narrowly escaping an own goal, before Benfield booted clear a Charlie Ruff backheel.

While Weymouth had done a good job of containing the hosts in the first half, the Clarets needed fewer than two minutes of the second period to open the scoring.

Weymouth bravely blocked three efforts in the box before the ball fell to Barbrook who unleashed an absolute screamer to beat Benfield for 1-0.

Weymouth’s response to going behind was positive, Parsons winding his way into the box and testing Gray with a low shot.

Jenkins headed over before O’Connell replaced Parsons for Weymouth, but the visitors began to lapse as Jenkins nodded off target again and the menacing Castiglione powered over the bar.

Seconds later, Roberts stormed down the wing but his ball across the box agonisingly failed to connect with a Weymouth teammate.

Ben Brookes curled a free-kick wide for the hosts before a double change, bringing Castiglione and Francis off for Samir Carruthers and Ody Alfa.

Carruthers was involved in a clever free-kick routine 11 minutes from time as he picked out Ruff in the box but, in a common theme for this match, he fired over.

With conditions worsening in rain, causing the pitch to churn up, Weymouth’s task to retrieve a point increased in difficulty during the final 10 minutes.

When Weymouth did break the solid Chelmsford line, they found Gray as an unmovable object as he scampered off his line to block from Roberts, who looked to round the keeper.

Weymouth threatened from a corner in the 88th minute as Cameron James cleared Rowan’s header off the line, summing up their near misses in front of goal as their winning was ended against quality opposition.

Chelmsford: Gray, James, Brookes, Winfield, Francis (Alfa 75), Alexander, Barbrook, Jenkins, Ruff (Wordsworth 88), Castiglione (Carruthers 75), Ochieng. Subs not used: Jones, Hockey.

Terras: Benfield, Jones, Hamblin, Jo Thompson, Durojaiye, Bearwish, Goodship, Linton, Touray (Roberts 19), Parsons (O’Connell 59), Rowan. Subs not used: Bakrin, Bolton, Matthews.

Referee: Tommy Breen.