'Mr Chelmsford City' commemorated
CHELMSFORD City will enter their first home friendly of the campaign with a dependable and guaranteed new presence on the pitch against Stevenage Borough tonight (7.
CHELMSFORD City will enter their first home friendly of the campaign with a dependable and guaranteed new presence on the pitch against Stevenage Borough tonight (7.45pm).
No contracts have been agreed, wages haven't even been discussed and this newcomer offers all the loyalty Clarets fans could possibly expect of them.
Wednesday night marks City's first game at Melbourne since the sad passing of club president Don Walker back in May, and the playing surface at the stadium will prove to be a permanent memory of 'Mr Chelmsford City' now one of his final wishes has been granted.
Last week, Don's ashes were scattered around the full perimeter of the pitch by club chairman, Mansell Wallace, meaning he will be ever present as Chelmsford head into another promotion-chasing campaign in the Blue Square South.
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“Don's presence around the pitch will be great for us and we know he will be willing us to win all the way through the season,” explained head coach Glenn Pennyfather as he prepared for the visit of Graham Westley's Blue Square Premier outfit before focussing on Saturday's arrival of Southend United.
“The players will know he's there supporting us and helping to try and get us out of this league.”
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Three players will certainly be missing from the line-up that takes to the newly-spiritualised pitch against Borough. Steve Robinson hasn't kicked a ball in training or matches so far due to injury, while Dave Rainford and Ricky Holmes are both unavailable.
However, Pennyfather is keen to put to bed any rumours about the future of Holmes with the club, stating: “Ricky is back from his holiday but won't be ready to play against Stevenage. He is very much part of our plans and he wants to be part of the team too and rejuvenate himself again after last season. We all know what he is capable of and if he regains his form he will have a massive say in our season.”
City went down by two goals to nil in their first friendly at Southern League club Bury Town at the weekend, but the Clarets' boss knows there is much more than simply results when it comes to pre-season preparations.
He summarised: “Some of the younger lads who took part on Saturday won't figure but we will have some other new faces involved. The Bury game was very much to get our legs going and we will be putting out some stronger sides in our next two games, which will provide us with good tests.”