STO1807 Declan Weeks

    Chester 2-3 Stockport County

    Chester were narrowly defeated by League Two side Stockport County in what was another positive workout against EFL opposition at the Deva Stadium.

    The Blues made a strong start as Joel Taylor’s cross was headed out but met by Declan Weeks on the volley – however his effort was off target.

    Straight up the other end, County took the lead. Connor Evans received the ball on the edge of the box and fired a low effort across Wyll Stanway and into the bottom corner.

    But Chester equalised just six minutes later. Weeks found the pass for the run of Charlie Caton – who did brilliantly to hold off Kyle Knoyle and then find the net despite the best efforts of ‘keeper Jordan Smith.

    The Blues continued to play positively as Adam Thomas crossed for the leap of Caton who nodded over the bar.

    However before the end of the half Stockport started to show their higher division quality – as Evans once again had a go from range but Stanway was equal to it.

    Dave Challinor’s men did go in front before the break though, as Macauley Southam-Hales’ clipped pass was controlled and finished majestically by ex-Blue Antoni Sarcevic, a goal that was appreciated by both sets of supporters.

    Two quickly almost became three when another flowing County move saw the ball find its way to Nick Powell, but Stanway stood up well to turn his delicate chip behind for a corner.

    Stockport continued to press after the break as Knoyle was played through on goal, however Stanway was there to make the save once again.

    Nick Powell showed his quality on the night at the Deva and almost had a goal on 54 minutes with a long range effort – only to be denied by the Blues number one at full stretch.

    Stanway was being kept busy but rising to the challenge every time. This time Powell was the provider – his cross picked out the unmarked Evans – who saw his header brilliantly tipped over the bar.

    But he couldn’t keep out the third on 66 minutes, as sub Paddy Madden drilled the bouncing ball into the bottom corner for the visitors.

    The Seals got back into the game just a few minutes later as Iwan Murray was tripped inside the area after some neat play. Captain Weeks stepped up to convert from the spot.

    Stockport almost added a fourth late on but Stanway once again made a super stop – this time from point blank range to save Madden’s header.

    Chester: Stanway, Thomas (Coates 63), Williams, Burke, Heywood (Daly 63), Taylor, Goodson (Trialist A 63), Weeks (Bott 77), Whitehouse (Hall 63), Murray, Caton (Trialist B 63).

    Scorers: Caton 8, Weeks (pen) 71; Evans 2, Sarcevic 42, Madden 66.

    Attendance: 957.