Chelmsford city under 16's began their pre-season away at a much improved Braintree town. With the weather in the high 20's and with a majority of the squad still on their holidays, it was always going to be a tough first outing for the whites. With a bare 11 to chose from the formation picked itself, with two debutantes Harry Malloy and Max Price-Dixon slotting in behind last years top scorer Emanuel Tshinine.
The game started with city making the early running, keeping the ball well and looking confident. The early pressure payed off when new boy Harry Malloy slotted home from 12 yards after some good city build up. A second goal looked on the cards and when Emanuel Tshinine pressured the Hornets Defence into a mistake, he rounded the keeper and slotted home from close range. City looked good going forward and were unlucky not to be three up when a free kick from Tom Hunter just cleared the bar. With Braintree holding a high line at the back the space was always there for City to exploit. New boy Max Price-Dixon combined well with captain for the day Callum Pawley on a couple of occasions, but it was Emanuel Tshinine who eventually added city's third, outpacing the Hornets back line and slotting home. 3-0 at half time and a well deserved rest.
With the temperature rising and no changes to be made, the second half was always going to be tough. But City carried on playing their football. Jake Tanner and Alex Wall combined well down the right hand side all morning, Walls pace a great outlet for getting City up and down the right, and with Owen Grimshaw and Callum Pawley combining down the left, the side had a good balance.
However City began to tire and Braintree soon found themselves back in the game, for once the defensive pair of Luke Webster and Massochi Saldanha were opened up and the Braintree striker slotted home past the dive of Evan Blundell in the city goal. With city legs looking heavy, Braintree looked to capitalize and added a second soon after, a corner swung in low and hard beat everyone and flew in at the near post. City didn't panic and soon re-established their two goal cushion, the ever willing Emanuel Tshinine once again left the Hornets defence for dead and slotted home well from 18 yards out.
A great opening fixture, a good fitness test and an even better result. Well done