Hemel Hempstead Town boss Dean Brennan has heaped praise on his young side for their ‘mature’ performance against Chelmsford City on Tuesday night.
The Tudors went into the clash knowing that only a win would do if they were to put pressure on the sides above them in the Conference South playoff race, and they duly delivered a 3-1 victory courtesy of goals from Ed Oshodi, Matty Harriott and Kyle Connolly.
The victory puts Hemel only two points off a playoff spot – with a game in hand over fifth-placed Gosport Borough – and manager Brennan was understandably delighted with the result.
“I though our work ethic was excellent and in the second half we managed the game very well,” he said. “We were very mature in our performance.
“We got a clean sheet in the second half and that’s what we need to get promoted and have success – the lads know that.
“They had a good go at us to be fair, Chelmsford, and Laurie Walker made a couple of good saves for us in the first half, but they couldn’t do that in the second half.
I though our work ethic was excellent and in the second half we managed the game very well.Hemel Hempstead Town FC manager Dean Brennan
“I thought first half we were quite fortunate to go in leading, if I’m being honest. But second half I thought we were absolutely excellent.
“We had words at half-time. If I’m being honest I wasn’t happy with the display in the first half – we were cruising at 2-0 up and then gave a goal away three minutes before half-time which is crazy.
“But we’ve made it hard for ourselves all season – that’s just how we do things. It’s a fantastic win and the three points were the main thing.
“All the games are big at this stage of the season and it’s all about picking up wins, however they come.”
Brennan singled out his three substitutes – James Simmonds, James Potton, and Kyle Connolly – who he felt helped the Tudors to see out the game.
“The substitutes all made an excellent impact,” he said. “Simmonds and Potton were excellent and I was absolutely delighted for Kyle Connolly to come on and get his first goal for us. It was a fantastic goal.”
Next up for Hemel is a trip to high-flying Hertfordshire neighbours Boreham Wood on Saturday afternoon.