A PROFESSIONAL performance from League 1 outfit Barnsley put an end to Chester’s FA Cup run and will leave them wishing they had taken their chance to produce another upset in the first match, a 0-0 away draw at Oakwell which forced last night’s replay.
On a night where the rain was driving down hard at the Swansway Chester Stadium as play got underway, it was soon obvious that despite their industrious, battling approach to the game the Blues were no match for the pace and technical ability of the side two leagues and 47 places above them.
The first goal for the away side came via an emphatic finish from Kane Hemmings after just 16 minutes, Blues ‘keeper Jon Worsnop went to dive for the initial shot which hit Matt Brown, the ball fell kindly to Hemmings and he made no mistake with a left-footed finish into the top left corner.
Barnsley manager Danny Wilson was much the happier of the two managers for the remainder of the half, not only had his side taken the lead but the goal quietened the home support. That same support could be reasonably happy going into half time only 1-0 down, as could manager Steve Burr, the Blues giving the away side far too much space to play in.
The gulf in technical ability grew more and more obvious as the game went on and it was all too easy for the ball to be played out wide to Dale Jennings on the left in acres of space, before the former Bayern Munich academy player produced a comfortable finish past Worsnop in the 63rd minute, albeit with the help of the right-hand post. Hemmings the provider this time, 2-0 Barnsley.
Not even the sharing out of Jaffa cakes after 76 minutes could save Chester from a deserved 3-0 victory for the away side, Jennings sealing the win in the 88th minute with a sensational, slaloming run through the Blues’ defence before producing a great finish to beat Worsnop for the second time.
Jennings nearly claimed the match ball after his effort on goal in added time was tipped over the bar, but his classy second goal and Barnsley’s third sealed the Tykes’ passage into the third round of the FA Cup where a home tie against Championship side Middlesbrough awaits them.
A valiant effort on produced on the night by the Conference battling Blues who must now look ahead to a league clash with Barnet on Saturday before their FA Trophy tie against Telford on Monday.