LiveBLUEBIRDS LIVE: Chippenham Town 2 Banbury United 0

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  • FULL-TIME: Chippenham Town 2 Banbury United 0
  • AFC Totton are relegated as Chippenham Town's place in the Calor League Premier Division is made safe
  • Alan Griffin smashes the hosts in front from a free-kick inside the area after Banbury are penalised for a backpass before James Guthrie makes it 2-0
  • Dan Barnes reports from Hardenhuish Park


We'll have reaction from Chippenham manager Mark Collier on later this evening and more Chippenham Town news in next Thursday's Gazette and Herald. 

Thanks for following Bluebirds Live this afternoon


And that brings a positive afternoon to an end for the Bluebirds, who kill off the outside threat of relegation with all three points today.

Banbury could easily of scored a few of their own but Mark Collier's men were relatively comfortable at Hardenhuish Park as they put in a confident performance.

Chippenham can now concentrate on enjoying the company of their Norwegian visitors and also enjoying the last four games of the season - that's two clashes against Hungerford Town and trips to Hitchin Town and St Neots Town.

Don't forget that the Bluebirds travel to Hungerford on Thursday evening


AFC Totton are relegated as Chippenham Town's place in the Calor League Premier Division is made safe




Guthrie blazes into the box and plays a ball right into the danger area but there isn't a blue shirt there to tap home!

Play breaks to Tindle, who shifts to the left but skews his strike wide of the far post 


Banbury's Anthony Obeng is booked for catching Smith late


Tyron Leigh replaces Alan Griffin


Tappin has an effort from range that isn't too far wide


Banbury break with an impressive counter-attack, with Conor Collins dummying over Dias' ball, but when it arrives to substitue Carl Tappin on the edge of the area, the midfielder blazes over!

At the other end, Harris cuts in from the left wing and smacks a shot straight down the throat of Dutton


Griffin slides a ball into the path of Harris and the subtitute goes for the return ball but just overhits his pass.

Banbury have created those chances but the home side are looking comfortable now


Corey King comes off for Jake Harris


Banbury's Martin flashes a well-struck effort not far wide of the target 


Totton's Tanasheh Abrahams is booked for dissent


Banbury break through again but pass up the opportunity to score yet again!

Evangelinos is one-on-one but Kaupinnen uses his body well to deflect the effort away. Claudio Dias is arriving and has the goal at his mercy but somehow scuffs into the side-netting!

It looks as though the offside flag may have been up to spare the United man's blushes


Phillips deflected strike flies wide for a corner


The scoreline at Stourbridge is now mirroring the one here at Hardenhuish Park - AFC Totton are 2-0 down


Some fine defending prevents Banbury pulling a goal back!

Marvin Martin slides in Skendi with a fine through ball but keeper Kaupinnen gets down well to block at the forward's feet.

The ball breaks back to the arriving Nic Evangelinos but his strike, which beats Kaupinnen, is blocked on the line by Tindle.


The Bluebirds lead gets a bit healtheir. That was a smart ball from King, who actually had a brief spell at Banbury earlier this season, and the run and finish from Guthrie were superb


James Guthrie nets Chippenham's second of the afternoon! Phillips plays the ball out to King and the winger lifts a first-time ball over the Banbury back line.

Guthrie races clear and expertly lobs the ball high over the onrushing Dutton and into the empty net - great goal! 




Banbury pile on the pressure from a corner. Skendi's strike is blocked near the goalline by the foot of Tindle before the visitors' Luke Cray hooks an effort wide 


And the second period gets underway at Chippenham


Banbury's management team are still protesting the decision to award that backpass with the referee as the teams get ready to kick off the second period


The two sides are on their way back out for the second half


So Chippenham go into the break a goal to the good.

It's been a fine performance from the Bluebirds so far and they've thrown wave after wave of attack at their opponents, who would have been fairly satisfied to have been on level terms.

But that defensive mix-up has handed Chippenham a deserved lead - can they maintain their advantage in the second period?  




Dutton bravely punches away from a corner-kick and the ball drops to Purnell, who takes a touch before attempting to catch out the Banbury goalie with a deft volley - the effort loops not far over the bar


Another chance falls to the Bluebirds, with McClennan's dangerous ball flashing just out of the reach of Griffin


And the free-kick leads to a goal! Every Banbury player is back on the line but the ball is laid off to Alan Griffin, who smashes home a howitzer past the cluster of players to make it 1-0 Chippenham.

Elsewhere, AFC Totton have fallen a goal behind at Stourbridge.




But up the other end, the visitors are penalised for a back-pass! Chippenham have a free-kick PAST the penalty spot


Banbury strike the woodwork! A ball in from Marvin Martin somehow finds its way to substitute Marcus Green, who came on for the injured Isaac, and the winger has time and space to unleash a powerful volley, that smacks again the outside of the upright!


Banbury's Albi Skendi goes for goal from a free-kick deflects wide off the wall


Guthrie cuts in and unleashes a superb curling strike from the edge of the box but keeper Dutton watches it all of the way and claws the ball out of the air


It's also still Stourbridge 0-0 AFC Totton


From a short corner, McClennan's ball in finds Greg Tindle, who seemingly has acres of space, but the centre-back heads wide of the goal - it was almost as if he had too much space!


McClennan's cross from the byline finds the head of Phillips but his backwards header is gathered by the Banbury goalie


It looks as though Banbury manager Edwin Stein rushed on to the pitch to remonstrate with referee Cobb after that decision to book his player! 

The United boss gets a talking to from the official



Banbury's Kynan Isaac is booked for tripping King


McClennan embarks on a run and blazes past United's Luke Fathers before rolling a low ball into the six-yard box.

Under pressure, Dutton gathers.

It's Chippenham who are on the front foot at present - can they capitalise on some of this pressure?


Guthrie jinks past a few challenges and strikes wide with his right foot.

There's concern for the Bluebirds man though as he goes down injured afterwards


McClennan finds Purnell with a short corner and the full-back's cross into the box sees goalie Dutton punch away.

The ball falls to Smith but he gets his volley all wrong!


A swift counter-attack involving Corey King, McClennan and Harley Purnell sees the latter burst into the box before being nudged off the ball a the vital moment.

Moments later, Griffin strikes one from the edge of the box and Banbury goalie Scott Dutton beats away the effort.

In the next phase, Bryan Smith goes for goal but shoots wide of the mark


Chippenham win two corners in quick succession - the Bluebrids have started with some tempo here


From the resulting kick, Griffin glances a header wide


Phillips chases down a loose ball and takes a whack from a Banbury defender.

Referee Ben Cobb signals for a corner but the Chippenham striker looks in pain. He's back on his feet though


Great early chance for Chipppenham! Griffin knocks the ball down to Joe McClennan and the winger smacks a superb first-cross cross into the area.

Lee Phillips meets the perfectly-weighted delivery but his header loops not far over the bar


And we're underway



Chippenham to kick off, going from left-to-right


The two sides are assuming their position for the minute's silence in honour of the 96 football fans killed in the Hillsborough disaster


And out they come


We've just had the first glimpse of the Norwegian flag as the club's viking army begin to make a bit of noise.

The two teams are on their way into the tunnel before we begin today's pre-match tribute 


So Griffin makes it and it's the same line-up for Chipppenham as for last week's 3-1 win away at Truro City.

The Bluebirds are currently on their way back into the dressing room - there's just under 25 minutes until kick-off here at Hardenhuish Park


BANBURY UNITED: Scott Dutton, Luke Cray (c), Luke Fathers, Kynan Isaac, Tanasheh Abrahams, Tom Fishwick, Anthony Obeng, Marvin Martin, Albi Skendi, Claudio Dias, Nic Evangelinos.

SUBS: Connor Collins, Melanius Mullarkey, Carl Tappin, Anderson Pinto-Noguira, Marcus Green.


CHIPPENHAM TOWN TEAM TO PLANY BANBURY UNITED: Kent Kauppinen, Harley Purnell, Pete Monks, Bryan Smith, Jon Beeden, Greg Tindle, Joe McClennan, Corey King, Alan Griffin (c), Lee Phillips, James Guthrie.

SUBS: Tyron Leigh, Jake Harris, Jake Simpson, Ben John


We'll bring you today's teams as soon as we get them


So looking back at today's match, there'll be no Aaron Oakley for Chippenham after his loan from Swindon Town expired.

Long-term absentees Callum Wright and Iain Harvey are out for the season and there has also been a question mark over Alan Griffin (pictured), who has been struggling with a knee problem.

He's kitted and taking part in the warm-up though, so we'll see if the striker is fit to start today's game.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Alan Griffin celebrates the first of his two goals at Hardenhuish Park last night (Picture by Robin Foster)


We're expecting a party atmosphere at Hardenhuish Park today as around 30 members of Chippenham's Norwegian supporters' club are in attendance.

But of course, there's plenty of reason to be solemn too – today's match kicks off at 3.07pm, as part of the league's tribute to mark the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster.


It's potentially a big afternoon for the Bluebirds today - Mark Collier's side can finally kill off the threat of relegation if results go their way.

A Chippenham win would do it, whilst a draw could well be enough, leaving AFC Totton needing to pull off a huge swing in goal difference.

Of course, that could all be rendered conjecture as we keep an eye on Totton's trip to play-off chasers Stourbridge – if the Hampshire outfit fail to win, the Bluebirds are safe.


As usual, get involved with Bluebirds Live this season and have your say on Chippenham Town's fortunes on and off the pitch.

Get in touch via Twitter using the hashtag #bluebirdslive, comment in the box below or e-mail – but please keep your thoughts clean!


Good afternoon from Hardenhuish Park. Bluebirds Live returns this afternoon as Chippenham Town are back on home soil for the visit of Banbury United.


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