REPORT | Chester 0-3 Curzon Ashton
Chester FC’s first home game in front of fans for 18 months ended in disappointment as Curzon Ashton took the points at the Deva.
The visiting side raced into a two goal lead courtesy of an Adam Thomas brace before former Blue Craig Hobson added a third in second half stoppage time.
Bern and Jonno named an unchanged side for their opening home game of the campaign following a draw at Farsley Celtic on the weekend.
For the second time in the opening two contests the Blues found themselves a goal behind early though, as Jack McKay beat Dan Cowan down the Curzon left and crossed low for Thomas to turn in from close range.
Curzon pressed Chester well and were able to make that pressure count after twenty-five minutes as the ball broke to Thomas in the hosts penalty area and he fired low, on the turn, to double their advantage.
Two almost became three shortly after as Alex Curran snuck in ahead of Louis Gray, but fired his effort over the crossbar.
Chester’s first opportunity of the game came just before the half hour mark as Darren Stephenson latched onto James Hardy’s flick but he was denied well by Chris Renshaw before George Waring’s follow-up effort was fired over the crossbar.
The Blues made a double substitution at half time, bringing on Josh Askew and Jude Oyibo and it almost made an immediate impact as Oyibo combined with Hardy to set up Waring, but goalkeeper Renshaw was equal to his effort.
The pace to start the second half was much quicker and Chester were almost caught out twice in quick succession as first McKay ran away from the Blues’ defence before forcing Gray into a save before Curran found an opening a couple of minutes later and fired wide.
Chester were inches away from pulling a goal back after a spell of sustained pressure, the ball was played into the penalty area and met by an overhead kick from Waring, Renshaw could only tip onto the crossbar with the defence able to withstand the ball subsequently bouncing around in the penalty area before being fired over by George Glendon.
The pressure continued to build, despite time running out and Lloyd Marsh-Hughes forced Renshaw into another low save after a strong driving run, with his effort being too close to the stopper.
Curzon again had their number one to thank for keeping their two goal advantage as Josh Askew picked out Danny Livesey in the Curzon penalty area but the Blues’ centre half found his header tipped behind.
For all the pressure had, they couldn’t find a way beyond the Nash number one, with Marsh-Hughes denied again one on one with the Curzon ‘keeper.
From there the visitors went straight down the other end and added a third as sub Hobson intercepted a short backpass and slotted beyond Gray to seal the win.
CHESTER: Gray, Grand, Weeks, Livesey, Cowan, Hardy (Marsh-Hughes 58), Glendon, Waring, Stephenson (Oyibo 45), Morgan, Johnston (Askew 45).
SUBS NOT USED: Clark, Williams.
SCORERS: Thomas 7 & 25, Hobson 90+1.