Iron hold firm at FGR
Both keepers make saves that earn their sides a point
Braintree Town returned from Championship-favourites Forest Green Rovers with a point following a gritty display that earned a 1-1 draw. This was a game dominated by several excellent saves by the two keepers - the Iron's Sam Beasant and Rover's Sam Russell - that ensured both sides shared the points in the end after a highly entertaining game which saw end-to-end football all afternoon.
Beasant, who has been in fine form since returning to the Iron side after injury, pulled off two fantastic saves in either half while Russell denied Michael Cheek a minute into the second half with a great one-handed save from the striker's header and then again in the dying moments of the normal 90 minutes foiled first substitute Lee Barnard with a shot and then Jerome Okimo with his fine header.
There was even more drama in the seven minutes-plus referee Wayne Barratt added on at the end when the home side's Christian Doidge headed the ball into the net for what home fans thought was a winning goal only to be rightly denied by the assistant referee flagging for a clear offside.
It would have been an injustice had the Iron returned home empty-handed because for long periods, particularly in the first half, they contained the promotion-chasing home side, currently in second place, with a thoroughly disciplined and well organised display that continually frustrated the Rovers players from breaking down the Iron's rearguard action.
It was also a tactical battle won on the day by Iron manager Hakan Hayrettin who had fully prepared his side in setting up a system to frustrate the home side's normal free-flowing football and then catching them on the break which they repeatedly did n the game.
"We had our game plan and the players knew they had to work hard as a team, closing them down all the time in every department on the pitch and then moving the ball out quickly from defence and catching them cold in defence," he said. "It worked a treat and, but for their keeper, we would have won the game in my view because they couldn't cope with the system we played.
"We knew it was going to be difficult coming here and obviously once they had equalised that gave them confidence to push forward more and put our defence under pressure," he explained. "But again we showed what togetherness we have in the squad with players working for each other and we kept our shape and discipline.
"Overall it was a really good performance by us and the result certainly no fluke," he added. "Sam (Beasant) again made a couple of great saves at crucial periods of the game and he again showed that he is about the best keeper in this league."
The Iron overcame a difficult few early minutes in the game but nerves were calmed on 14 minutes when Cheek fired home from close range after a quick thinking Jack Midson took a quick throw-in down the left wing for Okimo to race clear before he delivered an excellent cross into the home goalmouth for Cheek.
It was a deserved lead for the Iron and twice before half time keeper Russell pulled off fine saves to deny the visitors adding a second while on 39 minutes down at the other end Beasant foiled Rob Sinclair saving his fierce first-time shot.
The turning point of the game though came 45 seconds into the restart when again the industrious Cheek picked up a right wing cross at the far post only to see Russell somehow manage to push the ball away off the goal line.
A second Iron goal then would in effect have killed off the game for the Iron but after a home side double substitution on 55 minutes it was the turn of the home fans to celebrate as Charlie Clough headed home a Liam Noble free-kick to beat Beasant in the Iron goal.
For a while the Iron's backline was put under severe pressure but unlike in the early part of the season the backline of Sean Clohessy, Jake Goodman, Manny Parry and Okimo stood firm and didn't capitulate while Beasant was on top form to deny Nolan a goal on 68 minutes.
The Iron though came back strongly and but for two late saves by Russell from Okimo and Sam Corne the Iron could well have snatched a late winner.
But in those final few minutes of added on time the home side threw everything they could at the Iron defence but Doidge's late header was correctly ruled offside.
A relieved Bessant said: "I was going to catch the high cross into the box but then changed my mind at the last moment and thought it best to punch the ball away but the player was suddenly on his own right in front of me and got to the ball first.
"I thought it was obviously offside and thankfully the assistant on the far side already had his flag up before he made contact with the ball," said Beasant. "It would have been an injustice had the goal been allowed to stand - even their players didn't argue with the decision."
On the much improved recent form of the side he said: "It's down to the gaffer and getting us more organised at the back and with a settled line-up there so everyone knows what they are going. There's a tremendous team spirit in the dressing room and I fully believe if we keep playing the way we are we can move up into the top half of the table - all the players have the same belief."
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Goodman, Parry, Okimo; Hensall (Hall-Johnson 71), Isaac, Corne (Farrell 83), Twardek; Cheek (Barnard 89), Midson. Unused subs: Gayle, Maybanks. Attendance: 1,764 (including 47 Iron fans). Referee: Wayne Barratt.
Iron now have two weeks off to prepare for their Buildbase FA Trophy Third Round tie with Dulwich Hamlet on Saturday, 4th February. There is no fixture next Saturday as scheduled visitors, Lincoln City, are in FA Cup action.

Forest Green Preview
David Bland previews tomorrow's trip to FGR
Match Preview: Sat 21 January 2017, Forest Green R v Braintree T
FGR 2nd place on 53 points.
Home Record: Played 14, Won 6, Lost 1, Drawn 7 (25 points)
Goals For: 27, Goals Against: 17
Last 4 home games: Drew 5-5 v Torquay U, Drew 1-1 v Dover A, Drew 2-2 v Tranmere R, Lost 2-3 v Lincoln C
Top scorers: Christian Doidge - 14, Keanu Marsh - Brown - 8, Rhys Murphy - 7
Braintree Town currently 18th on 30 points
Away Record: Played 14, Won 5, Lost 6, Drawn 3 (18 points)
Goals For: 16, Goals Against: 25
Last 4 away league games: Lost 3-0 v Dagenham & Redbridge, Won 0-1 v Boreham W, Drew 1-1 v Gateshead, Won 4-5 v Southport
Top scorers: Michael Cheek - 16, Lee Barnard - 6, Chez Isaac & Jack Midson - 4
Transfer/Loan news: Ebou Adams loan has finished.
Injury news: We have a fully fit squad.
Suspension news: Hall - Johnson has completed his ban. On 4 yellow cards are Jack Midson & Harry Lee.
Last meeting: 24 Sept 2016. Braintree T 0 FGR 1
DB prediction: Probably the toughest game of Hak's new look team to date, but surprisingly, FGR have not won at home since their 2-1 triumph over Aldershot on November 5th 2016. Their last home match saw them share 10 goals with lowly Torquay, so there's hope for the Iron. However they are averaging almost 2 goals a game at home and the team will have to put in hard shifts in both halves to gain something from this game. Alas I feel we may come up just a bit short, so I'm going for a 2-1 defeat.

Response to Council's letter
We believe what we are proposing is deliverable, entirely self funding and at no cost to the taxpayer
The Club have seen the letter in last week's Braintree & Witham Times from Lady Newton and has responded as follows.

Dear Editor,
The Football Club have seen the letter in last week's Braintree & Witham Times from Lady Newton and we welcome her clarification on our Council's position and its view of the facts.
We agree with her that the Football Club has received support from our Council and we have been and remain grateful for that support. The 150,000 loan from our Council to the Football Club was used to cover the ground improvements necessary for us to remain at our present level but also, as they emphasised at the time, offered our Council a better return on their investment than would otherwise have been available to them. A win-win situation for us both as partners.
We are also aware of the 75,000 that was budget for the options appraisal for a new stadium, but this appraisal also reviewed the development of the remainder of what was once the entire Crittall Sports & Social Club site. The Football Club's part of the 14 acres being just 30% - the other 70% being owned by our Council. Since that appraisal, our Council has pushed on with plans to include its 70% as land earmarked for residential development, but has deleted the Football Club's 30%.
The sale of the Football Club's land by our Council in 1995 was before my time, however I am advised that our Council were very keen on the sale as it transferred our Council's previous responsibility for maintenance from them as landlord to the Football Club as new owners.
Although our Council may believe that the 45,000 sale price was 'very low', it is a price our Council were obviously content with at the time, for what I'm told were then quite basic facilities in need of much improvement, otherwise our Council would not have sold it!
Personally, I believe that the price of 45,000 was a decent return for our Council who had previously paid only a nominal amount to purchase the land back in 1973.
The Football Club never intended to make any profit out of relocation. All we are seeking is the ability to progress. From being encouraged to work with our Council in 2009 to become a partner in the new Community Stadium at Panfield Lane, we were committed to contributing and surrendering everything we owned towards the cost. As partners, we were even prepared to switch from owning our own ground to being tenants in a stadium owned by our Council.
We had worked on that basis for seven years until being jettisoned in July last year. Since then Council Officers have advised the Football Club that it should look elsewhere for a deliverable site and our latest ideas were submitted to our Council in October.
We believe what we are proposing is deliverable, entirely self funding and at no cost to the taxpayer and we welcome Lady Newton's statement that, should this be the case, our Council would support it.
As a Braintree success story we are desperate to avoid being forced out of the town we are proud to represent.
Lee Harding, Chairman & Chief Executive,
Braintree Town Football Club Limited.

Eastleigh away - new date
New date in February
Braintree Town's Vanarama National League fixture away at Eastleigh, originally scheduled for Saturday 4th February but postponed as Iron are at in Buildbase FA Trophy action that day, has been re-arranged. The match will now take place at the Silverlake Stadium on Tuesday 14th February, wit kick-off at 7.45pm.

Lincoln City at home - postponed
New date will be announced when agreed
As a result of Lincoln City's continued involvement in this season's FA Cup competition, our Vanarama National League fixture scheduled for a week on Saturday, 28th January, has been postponed. News on a revised date will be announced as soon as it is agreed.

Dulwich at home in the Third Round
Iron at home in the last sixteen
Braintree Town have been drawn at home to Ryman League Premier Division side Dulwich Hamlet in the Third Round of this season's Buildbase FA Trophy, at Wembley Stadium this morning. The Champion Hill club are currently fifth in the Ryman League and knocked Vanarama South side Whitehawk out, away from home, in last Saturday's Second Round 4-1. The full Third Round draw is as follows:

Welling United v Lincoln City
Braintree Town v Dulwich Hamlet
Barrow v Kidderminster Harriers
Tranmere Rovers v Chelmsford City
Macclesfield Town v Forest Green Rovers
Wealdstone v Stockport County or Brackley Town
Nuneaton Town v York City
Worthing or Sutton United v Boreham Wood

The match will take place on Saturday, 4th February.

Trip to Eastleigh postponed
New date will be announced when agreed
As a result of Braintree Town's progress into the last sixteen of this season's Buildbase FA Trophy, the Vanarama National League fixture at Eastleigh, originally scheduled for FA Trophy Third Round day on Saturday, 4th February, is now postponed. News on a revised date will be announced as soon as it is agreed.

Iron ease into Trophy last 16
Cheek hat-trick sets up Iron win
Braintree Town matched their best ever performance in the FA Trophy - reaching the last sixteen of the competition with a fine 5-2 win at East Thurrock on Saturday. A smartly taken hat-trick by the in-form Michael Cheek guided Iron into the Third Round after an initially difficult period of the game on a tricky Rookery Hill pitch.
But for a brilliant save on 19 minutes by Iron keeper Sam Beasant, denying former Town player Reece Harris from opening the scoring, it could have been a different outcome.
Beasant's save proved to be a game changing moment because once in front on 39 minutes the Iron never looked like losing out to a home side who play one level lower in the Vanarama South.
"They made it really difficult for us in that opening 20 minutes when we were sloppy in ever department and players not doing the simple thing," explained Iron manager Hakan Heyrettin. "It took a great save from Sam to keep us level and it was a much needed wake-up call too.
"Yes, the muddy and uneven pitch was a leveller but we knew what to expect and they are a decent enough team but at the beginning we were playing in fits and starts," he continued. "Once we scored it gave players more confidence and we then started to play how we can and from then on the result was not in doubt."
Hayrettin, who gave a first start winger Alex Henshall and with Millwall loanee Kris Twardek on the other flank, both caused problems down the wings all afternoon with their speed and ball control.
The two other changes from the team that beat Sutton United in midweek was the return of Norwich City loanee Ebou Adams in midfield and Jake Goodman in the centre of defence at the expense of Ian Gayle with Sam Corne and Lee Barnard on the subs' bench.
After surviving that difficult first 20 minutes it was Cheek's opening goal - a superbly taken free-kick 25 yards out that rocketed into the top corner of the home net - that calmed Iron nerves and right on half time it was Cheek and his never-say-die attitude that gave his side the all important second goal.
He chased down home keeper Lukas Lidakevicius as he attempted to kick the ball out but it cannoned off the striker running kindly behind the keeper leaving Cheek to score with a simply tap-in.
At half time the home side fans probably felt aggrieved at the scoreline because their side had done more than enough to have at least been on level terms.
The game though was effectively over as a contest 50 second into the restart when in their first attack Jack Midson slipped a fine ball through to Cheek who ran on, rounding keeper Lidakevicius, to slide the ball into the unguarded net.
There was brief respite for the home side on 49 minute when much to the amazement of all fans referee Christopher O'Donnell decided an Iron player had allegedly handled the ball as it was swung over the from a corner on the right.
It was left to Sam Higgins to fire the spot kick past keeper Beasant but any thoughts by home fans in the 313 watching crowd that there might be a revival for them quickly banished completely on 56 minutes when another fine attack move by the Iron saw Midson head home from close range after his first headed effort had come back off the bar.
At 4-1 the Iron still keep pressing for more goals and again Midson was so close to adding his second but a great first time header went narrowly over the bar.
The fifth goal though duly came on 56 minutes when substitute Lee Barnard drove the ball past the home keeper after excellent wing play by Henshall.
On 61 minutes the Iron again had the ball in the net through Cheek but mysteriously referee O'Donnell blew for an apparent foul on the build up by Goodman although both sides thought it was legitimate as they had started to line-up for a restart from the centre spot.
With Manager Hayrettin making three Iron substitutions in the closing stage his side kept up the pressure on the home defence and they could well have had at least two or three more goals in the closing stages.
The one goal that did count came on the 90th minute in a rare breakaway by the side Higgins managed to stab home a loose ball in the Iron box but by then the game was over as a contest and the Iron progress into the Third Round.
"Overall I was pleased with our play, despite those few early minutes, and we kept our shape and crucially our discipline and that's what we must do in every game," he said. "We need to keep winning games because that breeds confidence of the players and the whole team as a unit.
"We now have a week to prepare for a really tough game away to Forest Green Rovers on Saturday," he added. "This was Ebou Adams last game on loan but I am hoping that we can keep him for a bit longer and that something I shall be working on this week."
Braintree Town: Beasant; Glohessy, Goodman, Parry, Okimo; Henshall (Maybanks 73), Isaac, Adams (Farrell 75), Twardek; Cheek (Barnard 66), Midson. Unused subs: Rumens, Corne. Referee: Christopher O'Donnell. Attendance: 313
Next game for the Iron is away in the Vanarama National League to Forest Green Rovers on Saturday, 21st January, with kick off 3pm.

Pitch passes 9am inspection
Following a 9am pitch inspection today's Buildbase FA Trophy Second Round tie at East Thurrock United goes ahead, with kick-off at 3pm. Postcode for your sat navs: SS17 9LB.

East Thurrock Preview
David Bland previews tomorrow's FA Trophy trip to East Thurrock United
Buildbase FA Trophy Second Round - Saturday 14 January 2017
East Thurrock United v Braintree Town
East Thurrock 9th place on 33 points in National League South
Home Record: Played 12, Won 3, Lost 1, Drawn 8 (17 points)
Goals For: 23, Goals Against: 12
Last 4 home games (not inc Essex SC): Drew 1-1 v Concord R, Won 5-1 v Truro, Drew 1-1 v Aldershot (FAT), Won 2-0 v Margate (FAT)
Top scorers: T. Wraight - 14, S. Higgins - 13, B. Marlow - 6
Braintree Town currently 18th on 30 points
Away Record: Played 14, Won 5, Lost 6, Drawn 3 (18 points)
Goals For: 14, Goals Against: 23
Last 4 away league games: Lost 3-0 v Dagenham & Redbridge, Won 0-1 v Boreham W, Drew 1-1 v Gateshead, Won 4-5 v Southport
Top scorers: Michael Cheek -13, Lee Barnard - 5, Isaac -4
Transfer/Loan news: Nothing new to report.
Injury news: We have a fully fit squad.
Suspension news: Ebou Adams has completed his ban, Hall-Johnson out for 1 more game.
DB prediction: After a much needed win at home against Sutton United, the Iron travel to South Essex to take on East Thurrock United, looking to progress to the last 16 of the FA Trophy. The hosts have already disposed of Margate and Aldershot thus far, whilst the Iron overcame Torquay United 2-0 thanks to 2 Jack Midson goals.
Whilst ETU's home form is nothing to write home about, they have only lost once on their own patch and as Aldershot found out, are not that easy to overcome. Let's hope that a full strength Braintree squad is too much for our hosts and we certainly don't want a replay. The conditions may be a bit of a leveller, but I'm sticking with the boys to see it through at the first time of asking with a 2-1 win.

Fixture news
Tuesday replay if we draw Saturday
This coming Saturday, 14th January, Iron take a break from League action to visit Vanarama South side East Thurrock United for their Buildbase FA Trophy Second Round fixture. Admission at Rookery Hill on Saturday will be: Adults 12, Concessions 6 and Under 16s 2. Should the match finish as a draw, the replay will be at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium the following Tuesday evening, 17th January, with kick-off at 7.45pm. If required, price for the replay will be a Category C fixture.
The draw for the Third Round of the Buildbase FA Trophy will be made on Monday, 16th January and, should Braintree Town be included, we hope to have details on the Club site from lunchtime onwards.
Unless Chelmsford City draw in the FA Trophy on Saturday we will send a Braintree Town XI to Chelmsford for a BBC Essex Senior Cup fifth round tie on Monday, 16th January, with kick-off at (please note) 7.30pm.
On Saturday, 28th January, we are due to be at home to Lincoln City in another Vanarama National League fixture. However this date is FA Cup Fourth Round day and, should Lincoln City progress in the competition, their FA Cup tie that day will take precedence and our league match will be postponed and re-arranged for a later date.
Finally, our Vanarama National League fixture on the last day of the season, Saturday, 29th April, when we visit Aldershot Town - will now kick-off at 12.15pm.

Beasant performs heroics
Cheek scores the winner as Iron keep clean sheet
Thanks to a gritty, workmanlike and hard graft second half performance, Iron held on to win this tough game at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium on Tuesday evening giving them three much needed points as they try to continue to ease themselves away from the foot of the table.
It wasn't always pretty to watch but Iron ground out a result which was all that mattered and they had to thank keeper Sam Beasant who pulled off two fantastic second half saves, while the woodwork denied the visitors' experienced striker Matt Tubbs of a possible late equaliser.
It left Iron manager Hakan Hayrettin delighted with the way his side refused to concede goals in the second half as they did in the previous home against Chester and he praised their individual passion and desire in responding to that defeat and to come back to win all three points in this game.
"Overall we deserved to win and I felt we controlled the first half, scored a good goal and then in the second half held our nerve, kept battling away and showed what great team spirit and togetherness we have in the squad," he continued. "We knew it wasn't going to be a classic and they are a good side, on a fine cup run and obviously wanted to stay unbeaten in time for their FA Cup replay.
"We had to dig in hard in the second half but I was always positive that we could get the win we so badly needed," he continued. "We now go to East Thurrock on Saturday in the FA Trophy full of confidence and again we know that it will another hard game, but we're going there to try to win it."
Keeping with the same eleven that started against Chester, Iron included newly signed 19 year-old midfielder Kyron Farrell on loan from Millwall on the substitutes' bench. The game was scrappy at times but, in the first half, Iron always looked the more likely side to score.
Twice early on the other Millwall youngster on loan - Kris Twardek - set up chances with fine left wing crosses, the first a header from Jack Midson that went narrowly over and the second flashed across the box with no Iron striker on hand to connect.
The breakthrough came on 36 minutes when Twardek won the ball on the left, fed it through to Chez Isaac who in turn laid the ball through to Michael Cheek. For a moment it looked as if the chance was gone but the never-say-die commitment of Cheek saw him dig the ball out from defenders' legs, turn and fire a fine low shot past keeper Ross Worner.
It was just the boost Iron needed but the start of the second half saw the visitors showing more movement from midfield. On 55 minutes Beasant was forced into a great save to deny Maxime Biamou and, 12 minutes later, the Iron defence was caught napping and they allowed substitute Craig McAllister to race clear one-on-one. Again Beasant read the situation and brilliantly blocked the shot with his feet.
Iron, having survived a bout of pressure from the visitors, came back strongly in the final stages of the game with Cheek (twice) and Barnard going clear on goal only to be denied by first keeper Worner and defender Dean Beckwith's last ditch tackles.
The visitors almost snatched an equaliser on 88 minutes when the vastly experienced Tubbs rifled a low shot from just outside the penalty box only to see it strike the post and rebound out.
But Iron finished the stronger side in the five minutes of added time and again Cheek and Isaac went so close to adding a second for the home side.
The welcome return of central defender Jake Goodman, on as a 65th minute substitute, having been out injured since the end of November, certainly helped to shore up the Iron defence when under pressure and with midfielder Ebou Adams coming back from suspension and available again this Saturday manager Hayrettin will have the luxury of a stronger squad on tap for their next three really tough league games, against Forest Green Rovers, Lincoln City and Eastleigh.
Up next for Iron though is the FA Trophy game at East Thurrock on Saturday and if a replay is necessary it will be at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium on Tuesday evening, 17th January, kick off 7.45pm.
Braintree Town: Besant; Clohessy, Okimo, Gayle, Parry (Goodman 65); Midson, Isaac, Corne (Lee 74), Twardek; Barnard (Farrell 90), Cheek. Unused subs: Maybanks, Hensall. Attendance: 568. Referee: Alan Young.

Hak adds another
Millwall midfielder joins for rest of season
Iron Manager Hakan Hayrettin continued his squad building with the signing of Millwall midfield player Kyron Farrell on loan until the end of the season from League One side Millwall. Nineteen years of age, Kyron signed his first professional contract in May last year and was included in the twenty man squad for the Republic of Ireland at Under 19 level in September 2015. He made his Millwall debut in the Football League Trophy in November.

Sutton Preview
David Bland previews tonight's visit by Sutton United
Tuesday 10 January 2017 - Braintree Town v Sutton United
Sutton United: 14th place on 35 points.
Away Record: Played 12, Won 1, Lost 8, Drawn 3 (6 points).
Goals For: 10, Goals Against: 20.
Last 4 away league games: Lost 1-0 v Bromley, Lost 1-0 v Boreham Wood, Lost 2-1 v N Ferriby U, Drew 2-2 v York C.
Top scorers: Jamie Collins - 6, Nicky Bailey, Maxime Biamou, Roarie Deacon & Ross Stearn - 5.
Braintree Town currently 18th on 27 points.
Home Record: Played 13, Won 2, Lost 8, Drawn 3 (9 points).
Goals For: 14, Goals Against: 23.
Last 4 home league games: Lost 1-2 v Chester, Won 3-2 v Dagenham & Redbridge, Drew 2-2 v Bromley, Lost 0-1 v Tranmere R.
Top scorers: Michael Cheek -12, Lee Barnard - 5, Isaac - 4.
Transfer/Loan news: Ex Col U youngster Jordan Sanderson signs.
Injury news: Nothing new to report.
Suspension news: Ebou Adams out for 1 more game, Hall-Johnson out for 2 more games.
Last meeting: 13 September 2016 Sutton U 1 Braintree 2 (Isaac 2, 1- pen).
DB prediction: After the game of 2 halves against Chester in which the Iron couldn't reap the rewards of their first half endeavours, we welcome Sutton U to Cressing Road hoping for our first double of the season having secured our first away win of the season at Gander Green Lane back in Sept 2016. The U's have not travelled well this season with their only victory to date coming at Boreham Wood on 22 November 2016.
So it's a meeting of the worst home record in the league against one of the worst away records in the league. I'm staying optimistic in spite of recent blips and am going for an Iron victory, 2-0.

Hak frustrated by second half display
Ahead at the break, Iron let it slip
Iron endured a game of two halves with the home side completely dominating the first playing their best football of the season, creating chance after chance but only finding the net once through a brilliant Jack Midson headed goal on 31 minutes although they should have been at least four goals to the good at the interval.
The second half was in complete contrast as the previously dominant Iron midfield went missing, the defence sat deeper and deeper inviting the visitors to attack, which they did taking two of their three chances to win a game they never looked like doing so in the first 45 minutes.
Those Iron first half missed chances certainly came back to haunt them as they allowed the visitors' pacey striker James Alabi so much time and space to score on the hour and then snatch a winner six minutes from time.
"Frustrating and really annoying" was how an Iron manager Hakan Heyrettin summed up his side's second showing "because some players stopped doing what they were told and had been doing so well in the first half and deciding to do things their own way."
He went on: "We had enough chances in the first half to have put the game to bed - even their manager admitted that - but if you don't take them you get punished and that's what happened because the second half was terrible.
"They had two shots on goal and scored in that second half and we had two shots on target then too but didn't score," he explained. "It's such a fine margin in a game of football but we should have been home and dry with a four goal lead at the interval."
He added: "The players did so well too in the first half to come back so strongly after our New Year's Day defeat at Dagenham & Redbridge but we simply didn't keep it up for the 90 minutes.
"I'll make some changes for Tuesday's home game against Sutton United and I expect all the players to respond properly and make sure we win and pick up three points," he added.
The one bright spot of the afternoon was the impressive debut of loanee winger Kris Twardek from Millwall who gave the Iron excellent wide play and his pace created problems for the visitors and he laid on a fine left wing cross for Midson to open the scoring.
It's the first time this season, probably since Dan Sparkes moved to Torquay United in the summer, that the Iron had a speedy left winger who can deliver crosses into the opposition area.
"I really enjoyed it and felt we controlled the game completely in the first half and with the chances we created we should have won so it was disappointing to lose," said the 19 year-old who is on a 28-day loan. "There's a great spirit in the team and I'm confident we can do better for 90 minutes, win games and keep moving up the table."
The other newcomer, former Margate midfielder Alex Henshall, came on for the last 20 minutes and could have crowned his debut with a goal but for a great save by visiting keeper Alex Lynch, who also denied Twardek twice from scoring, pushing his low shots away for corners.
Such was the Iron's first half dominance they won nine corners to the visitors' one and on 22 minutes only a goal line clearance by Elliott Durrell prevented Jerome Okimo from finding his first goal for the Iron.
With Lee Barnard leading the line well with Michael Cheek and nicely supported in the first half by the midfield it was the positive way the Iron kept passing and moving the ball up field that the visitors simply couldn't cope with making it even more frustrating that they were not at least four goals to the good by the interval.
But then it all changed with the Iron defence sitting deeper and deeper in the second half with no midfield to pass to and resorting to pump, high hopeless ball up to the front two it just invited the visitors to take hold of the game which they did for most of the half.
In the final five minutes of the game the Iron again had two late chances to have possibly snatched an equaliser but both efforts from Twardek and Barnard were scrambled away by defenders.
The Iron's attention now turns to Tuesday when they entertain Sutton United in a re-arranged league game at home, kick off 7 45pm.
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Okimo, Gayle, Parry; Isaac (Maybanks 83), Corne (Lee 78), Midson; Barnard, Cheek (Henshall 70). Unused subs: Goodman, McNamara (goalkeeper). Attendance: 707. Referee: Adam Bromley (Plymouth).

Chester Preview
David Bland previews Saturday's visit by Chester
Sat 7 January 2017 - Braintree Town v Chester, kick-off: 3pm
Chester 10th place on 39 points.
Away Record: Played 13, Won 2, Lost 4, Drawn 7 (13 points).
Goals For: 14, Goals Against: 17.
Last 4 away league games: Lost 3-2 Solihull Moors, Drew 1-1 Guiseley, Won 0-3 Eastleigh, Drew 2-2 Tranmere R.
Top scorers: James Alabi - 8, Kane Richards - 7, Elliott Durell & Tom Shaw - 6.
Braintree Town currently 18th on 27 points.
Home Record: Played 12, Won 2, Lost 7, Drawn 3 (9 points).
Goals For: 13, Goals Against: 21.
Last 4 home league games: Won 3-2 Dagenham & Redbridge, Drew 2-2 Bromley, Lost 0-1 Tranmere R, Lost 0-1 Solihull M.
Top scorers: Michael Cheek -12, Lee Barnard - 5, Isaac - 4.
Transfer/Loan news: Akinola has signed for Barnet. Loans ended for Patterson, Goodship, Matthews. New loan signing Kris Twardek a midfielder from Millwall.
Injury news: Good news for Hak with Ashton, Goodman and Braham-Barrett all fit to resume and need game time.
Suspension news: Ebou Adams out for 2 more games, Hall-Johnson starts 3 game ban.
Last meeting: 17 September 2016 Chester 1 Braintree 0.
DB prediction: This week's visitors to the Ironmongery Direct Stadium are draw specialists Chester, who have managed 7 draws from their 13 away games thus far, including three 0-0s. Their only wins coming at North Ferriby & Eastleigh. The Iron now need to bring their form on the road back home and resume winning ways after their defeat in Dagenham.
Stats suggest that Chester set their stall out to gain a point, so it's imperative that the Iron get their noses in front. I'm going for 2-1 Braintree! COYI!

Hak adds two more
Two midfielders join the squad
Braintree boss Hakan Hayrettin has continued his squad building with the signing of two more players today. Joining the club are 22-year old midfielder Alex Henshall from Margate and 23-year old midfielder Jordan Sanderson from Senior League side Haringey & Waltham.
Alex Henshall joined Manchester City from Swindon Town in June 2010, after being named on the Swindon substitute's bench twice. Henshall spent eight years at Swindon Town as part of the academy setup before joining Manchester City as a 16-year old for an undisclosed fee. He then had loan spells at Chesterfield and Bristol Rovers and he scored his first professional career goal in a 2-1 defeat at Accrington Stanley. In March 2014, Henshall joined Championship side Ipswich Town on a youth loan until the end of the 2013-14 season. After leaving Manchester City in the summer of 2014, Henshall joined Ipswich Town as a free agent by signing a two-year contract on 27 June 2014. He joined Championship rivals Blackpool in a month-long loan deal in January 2015. In March 2016, Henshall signed for Scottish Premiership club Kilmarnock, agreeing a contract until the end of last season. He started this season at Margate before switching to Braintree Town. Henshall has also played for England at under-16 and under-17. He played in all of England's games at the 2011 UEFA European Under-17 Football Championship, helping England reach the semi-finals and also represented England at the 2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup, playing in the final group-stage game and helped England to reach the quarter-final stage.
Jordan Sanderson came through the Academy at Colchester United, where he made two Football League appearances. He featured for Chelmsford City on loan before joining Ebbsfleet United. He made just one league appearance for the club while spending time on loan at Lewes and Grays Athletic. He then began playing for Greek Football League side Chania in September 2015. He made his debut on 29 September in a 1-0 win at Pankritio Stadium over Ergotelis, before scoring his first professional goal in the Greek Cup win against Olympiacos Volou in October.

Hak adds to Braintree squad
19-year old joins from Millwall
Iron Manager Hakan Hayrettin has moved into the loan market to strengthen his first team squad. Joining Iron on a short-term loan is 19 year old midfield/winger Kris Twardek from SkyBet League One side Millwall.
Born in Toronto and raised in Ottawa. His father is Czech and his mother is Canadian. He began playing with West Carleton SC at the age of five and then graduated from the Ottawa South United Academy before signing for Millwall. He made his senior debut for Millwall on 30 August 2016, in an EFL Trophy game against West Bromwich Albion under-23s.
Twardek switched his international allegiance from the Czech Republic to Canada last year and was nominated for Canada's Under-20 Player of the Year award.

Iron second best at Dagenham
Rash challenge leaves Braintree a mountain to climb
Iron's recent revival came to an end at Victoria Road on Bank Holiday Monday evening when they were beaten by promotion chasing Dagenham & Redbridge having been forced to play three-quarters of the game with only 10 men.
The turning point of the game came on 20 minutes when a rash two-footed tackle by Reece Hall Johnson on the home side's Frankie Raymond left referee Antony Coggins little alternative but to show the Iron youngster a straight red card.
Already a goal down after only 11 minutes when Jordan Maguire-Drew tapped the ball in the Iron net after some poor defending then losing a player meant it was going to be an uphill struggle for the rest of the evening which it turned out to be allowing the home side to collect comparatively three easy points.
There was no need for Hall Johnson to make such a tackle on the half way line in the first place and his dismissal really cost the Iron any chance of taking something from the game.
"I'm disappointed to have lost the game and obviously to play with a man short for three-quarters of the game was a really difficult call," said Iron manager Hakan Hayrettin. "We didn't play with the same verve or pace either as we did in the game against them on Boxing Day, but I felt if we could have pulled a goal back early in the second half we stood a chance of probably getting a point.
"But it didn't happen and we now have to learn from the game, knuckle down and get ourselves fully prepared for the next two games which are at home and get back to winning ways," he added.
Hayrettin was forced to make two changes to his starting line-up with Harry Lee coming in for the suspended Ebou Adams and young Joe Maybanks coming in for Simeon Akinola, sold to Barnet on New Year's Eve.
The Iron started off slowly allowing the home side to control the game, particularly in midfield, so it was no surprise when Maguire-Drew opening the scoring and he could have added a quick second three minutes after netted again but his when left unmarked at the far post but he put his shot into the side netting.
The Iron remained on the back foot for the rest of the half and disappointingly conceded a second goal three minutes before half time when Luke Gutteridge forged his way through the Iron defence to drive the ball home past keeper Sam Beasant.
The second half did see the Iron improve although the home side still had plenty of play, but a tactical switch on 65 minutes saw the Iron play with a back three, including substitute Zak Jules leaving full-backs Sean Clohessy and Jerome Okimo to push forward and it began to pay off.
The nearest though the Iron came to scoring was a Michael Cheek header on 79 minutes from a wing cross by substitute Sam Corne which went narrowly wide but within a minute the home side added their third goal on the counter attack.
It came from Corey Whitely with a deflected shot that gave keeper Beasant no chance and the game then petered out in the final minutes in an evening most of the 102 Iron fans in the 1,261 crowd will, like the players, probably want to forget!
Next up for the Iron is a home match against Chester on Saturday, kick off 3pm.
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Okimo, Gayle, Parry; Maybanks (Jules 65), Isaac, Lee (Corne 75), Hall Johnson; Cheek (Barnard 86), Midson. Unused subs: Williams, Dias.

Sim signs for Barnet
Iron favourite goes with our blessing
Braintree Town have accepted an offer from Sky Bet League Two side Barnet to sign Sim Akinola. Sim Joined Iron in 2014 from Ryman League side Harrow Borough. The 24-year old striker started his youth career in Madrid before coming to the UK, where he spent two years at Earlsmead. In his two years at Braintree, Sim made 118 appearances, scoring 22 goals.
Chairman Lee Harding was quick to praise the Braintree favourite: "Sim has had a remarkable two years with our Club and goes into the full time game with our blessing and our best wishes. A fine example for many aspiring youngsters to follow, we have every belief that Sim will go on to great things in the game. It is perhaps fitting that he signed off his time at Braintree with our winner against Dagenham on Boxing Day.
From a business viewpoint, we are all aware that Sim will be a free agent in May and would, I'm sure, have received many offers. That said, we were not looking to sell one of our better players, but Barnet were quite persistent with their interest and, when the fee was agreed, we felt it was right for both the Club and Sim to discuss the possibility of going full time.
The proceeds of the move will now be used to help manager Hakan develop our squad and help the Club with our primary aim of consolidating our place in the National League. Finally, I spoke with Sim and he asked me to pass on his very best wishes to all at the Club for their backing and support. Good luck for the future Sim!"

Talking with - Michael Cheek
Next up in David Bland's player interviews is Michael Cheek

DOB 23/8/91 (25) Born: Nuneaton. Previous clubs: Port Vale, Stanway R, Heybridge S, Chelmsford City.

Q. Do you have another job?
A. Yes, I work in a call centre dealing with breakdowns.

Q. Who do you support?
A. Manchester U

Q. Who was your boyhood hero?
A. Ruud Van Nistelrooy

Q. Last gig you attended?
A. Ed Sheeran

Q. Do you partake of any other sport?
A. Yes, fishing.

Q. Best and worst grounds you've played at?
A. Best - Wrexham. Worst - Whitehawk

Q. What are your strengths/weaknesses?
A. Strength - Good in the air, awareness. Weakness - concentration.

Q. Who is the toughest defender you've come up against in this League?
A. Matt Fry, hated playing against him in training, he trained like he played!

Q. Best goal for Braintee?
A. Opener against Millwall in FA Cup this season.

Q. Do you set yourself a goal target?
A. Yes - 20

Q. Will you pass last season's 17 goals?
A. Yes

Q. At what level do you think you can play?
A. Higher, but not sure how high.

Q. Who are the quickest/slowest players at the club?
A. Quickest - Sim. Slowest - Chez

Q. Who is the team joker/moaner?
A. Joker - Chez. Moaner - Sim

Q. With the exodus in the summer, did anyone come in for you?
A. Yes, some interest from Dover.

Q. How do you pass the time on long away trips?
A. Play cards (poker)

Q. If you could change/bring in any rule what would it be?
A. Obstruction, players running across never seem to get penalised.

Q. Who is currently the best player in English football in your position?
A. Ibrahimovic

Q. If you could play for any current manager in England, who would it be and why?
A. Conte, he would bring fire to my game.

Q. Who will win the National League this season?
A. Lincoln City.

Iron win five-goal thriller
Boxing Day win over Dagenham & Redbridge lifts Iron to 18th
Braintree Town made it five successive unbeaten games in the league to take all three points in this fiesty Boxing Day affair at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium against their nearest neighbours in which saw both sides end up with 10-men.
It also left Iron manager Hakan Hayrettin delighted at putting one over his old boss John Still but, more importantly, securing another vital three points that moves his side up to 18th in the league and further away from the relegation zone.
"I think overall we shaded it and deserved to win although we didn't play particularly well in the first half yet came in at the interval 2-1 up," he said. "We then gave away a soft penalty within a minute of the restart but full credit to the boys they again showed such great resilience, spirit and determination to take control of the second half and score the goal that gave us victory and we could added a couple of more before the end.
"I think it showed to the home fans in the 1,353 crowd at the game what we are about in playing as a team with tremendous spirit and togetherness and everyone out there has the passion and desire to win every game," said Hayrettin. "We knew what to expect from them and we had our game plan and it worked and with us grafting so hard as a group it paid off."
One of the Iron's outstanding players on the day was central defender Manny Parry who said that in his short time with the manager and players they were fast developing a fantastic team spirit with everyone working for one another.
"We knew it was going to be a really tough game today because they have come down from the Football League with its huge financial parachute payment and they are full-time and desperately keen to get back up again," he said. "But I felt it was a deserved win in the end and with such a great team spirit led by the gaffer we know we can continue to do well and improve further and continue to climb up the table."
The first half was a fair tepid affair with the Iron lacking the fast pace of their game they showed in the midweek win at Boreham Wood and it was the visitors who struck first with Oliver Hawkins heading home on 32 minutes with the home defence caught cold.
But three minutes later the Iron were level thanks to a brilliant first time strike by the in-form Michael Cheek and right on half time they took the lead from the penalty spot courtesy of Sim Akinola.
But within a minute of the restart it looked like going all wrong for the Iron when right-back Sean Clohessy was adjudged to have handled the ball in the area leaving Hawkins the chance to level from the spot.
But Iron keeper Sam Beasant brilliantly parried his shot but unfortunately for the Iron the third rebound was whipped into the net by Jordan Maguire-Drew for the equaliser.
Undeterred the Iron continued to push forward with Cheek and Jack Midson leading the line so well and causing the visitors' rearguard all kinds of problems and their hopes for victory were further dashed on 60 minutes when their skipper Scott Doe was sent off for a second yellow card after committing a dreadful tackle on Reece Hall-Johnson.
Four minutes later the Iron broke clear again down the left and it was Akinola who cut inside defenders to drive a low, right-foot shot into the far corner of the visitors' net past the unsighted keeper Elliot Justham.
Despite make three substitutions, bringing on more forwards in a bid to get something from the game it was the Iron who should have scored again with both Akinola and Cheek being denied what looked like certain goals by last ditch tackles by the visitors defence.
Iron's caused was not then helped by loanee midfielder Ebou Adams being shown a straight red card by referee Anthony Serrano for a poor tackle on 73 minutes.
With the numbers evened up both sides pressed hard to score and both goalkeepers were kept extremely busy with the Iron's Sam Beasant making a magnificent one-handed save deep into the eight minutes of added time at the end to ensure his team won and kept their three points.
"We knew they would have a late go at us putting on more forwards to snatch an equaliser but the boys were fantastic and held on in some style to make sure we won the game," added Hayrettin.
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Okimo, Parry, Gayle (Jules 83); Isaac, Hall-Johnson (Lee 76), Adams, Akinola (Patterson 86). Unused subs: Corne, Barnard. Attendance: 1,353. Referee: Anthony Serrano.
Next up for the Iron is the return game at Dagenham & Redbridge on Monday, 2nd January, with kick off at 7.45pm.

Holiday Fixture Preview
David Bland previews our two games against Dagenham & Redbridge
This Boxing Day afternoon Braintree Town welcome Dagenham & Redbridge to the IronmongeryDirect Stadium, with kick-off at 3pm, and play the return at Victoria Road next Monday night, 2nd January, with kick-off at 7.45pm.
Dagenham & Redbridge currently 4th place on 46 points. Home Record: Played 13, Won 6, Lost 4, Drawn 3 (21 points). Goals For: 14, Goal Against: 13. Away Record: Played 12, Won 8, Lost 3, Drawn 1 (25 points). Goals For: 20, Goals Against: 11.
Last 4 home League games: Drew 4-4 Solihull M, Lost 0-1 Torquay U, Lost 1-4 Barrow, Lost 0-5 Gateshead. Last 4 away league games: Won 1-2 Dover Won 0-1 Maidstone, Won 0-2 York C, Drew 1-1 Forest Green Rovers. Top scorers: Oliver Hawkins - 13, Jordan Maguire-Drew, Corey Whiteley - 6.
Braintree Town currently 20th on 24 points. Away Record: Played 13, Won 5, Lost 5, Drawn 3 (18 points). Goals For: 12, Goals Against: 23. Last 4 home league games: Last 4 away League games: Won Boreham Wood 0-1, Drew 1-1 Gateshead, Won Southport 4-5, Won Wrexham 0-1. Top scorers: Michael Cheek - 9, Lee Barnard - 5, Simeon Akinola - 4.
DB prediction: Braintree's only home league game this month! It's a holiday double header against promotion seeking Dagenham & Redbridge. Daggers have been excellent on their travels this season winning 8 out of 12 fixtures. They have scored 20 goals and conceded 11. For the home game I'm going 1-1.
As for the return well, at home, D&R haven't fared as well, not having won at home since Oct 25, a 1-0 victory against Aldershot. For the return fixture, I'm going 1-2 Braintree!

Cheeky goal extends unbeaten run
Iron out of the bottom four for Christmas
Putting in one of their best performances of the season, Iron overcame quite a robust Boreham Wood side playing their direct football style with long balls up to their forwards to record a fully deserved win that moves them out of the relegation zone.
Iron completely dominated the first half and should have been a couple of goals to the good and were only denied by fine saves by home keeper Grant Smith.
They continued their dominance in the second half and were rewarded when Michael Cheek poked the ball home in a goalmouth scramble on 63 minutes and despite a late flurry of pressure from the home side in the four minutes of added on time during which a superb save by keeper Sam Beasant ensured they returned home with all three points.
A delighted manager Hakan Hayrettin, admitting the win and points was 'the best Christmas present I could have,' felt his team fully deserved their success and should have won by a bigger margin.
"The first half we played the best football since I have been here and the only disappointment was that we didn't score at least two goals," he said. "Simeon Akinola's great free-kick was somehow kept out by their keeper and Reece Hall-Johnson crashed his fine hard shot into the side netting with the keeper beaten."
The home side's cause was not helped either when key central defender David Stephens was sent off on 56 minutes for hauling down Hall-Johnson, receiving his second yellow card and, although the home came back strongly late on, Iron held on for an important win.
"I would have been very upset had they nicked an equaliser in injury time, much like Gateshead did on Saturday, but again Sam Beasant pulled off a magnificent late save to give us the win," he continued. "But the overall team performance for the 90 minutes was outstanding and shows what a great team spirit and what we are slowly building while we have also kept a clean sheet on the night which is also important."
Hayrettin, who was forced to bring in central defender Ian Gayle following a dead leg injury to Reading loanee Zak Jules at Gateshead, also made two other tactical changes bringing in Reece-Johnson and giving Norwich City youngster Ebou Adams his first start.
"I deliberated over the weekend and decided to make the change knowing that Reece was chomping at the bit to have a full game and his pace down the flank would cause them problem - which it did," he explained. "Ebou I can remember how good he was at Dartford and why Norwich then paid money for him and again he gave us that bit extra pace and pressure on opponents in the middle of the park.
"Thankfully both changes worked out but it was a fantastic show by all the boys but we know there's still further room for continued improvement and we now move on to two tough holiday games against Dagenham & Redbridge," he added.
In-form Cheek said he was delighted to have scored his 11th goal of the season and the fourth consecutive league game in which he has scored and he added: "It was a scrappy goal but they all count and I seem to be scoring regularly at present and long may it continue.
"I felt we deserved to win as we should have done on Saturday and we should have been at least 2-0 up at the interval because we completely dominated the first half," he continued. "My goal and the win was really for the gaffer because he has worked so hard in such a short time to get us playing the best so far this season and there's such now a great confidence in the side I'm sure we'll start moving up the table."
It was certainly an all round impressive display by the Iron with a back line defence that looks far more solid than at the start of the season while Chez Isaac and Adams in midfield never let the home take control, even forcing former key Iron midfielder Kenny Davis ineffectual and being subbed early in the second half.
Even when the home side did respond better in the second half, ironically more so after Stephens' dismissal, the Iron defence soaked up all the pressure helped by such a dominating performance by Beasant in goal.
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Parry,, Gayle, Okimo; Reece-Johnson, Isaac, Adams, Akinola; Cheek (Barnard 90+2), Midson. Unused subs: Lee, Corne, Patterson, Rumens. Referee: David Rock. Attendance: 313.
Next up for the Iron is the Boxing Day Vanarama National League match at home to Dagenham & Redbridge, kick off: 3pm.

Iron denied late on at Gateshead
Penalty sees Iron denied three points
Iron were within five minutes of returning from their long day trip to the North East with deservedly all three points but they conceded a late penalty to end up with just one point leaving manager Hakan Hayrettin a frustrated man.
"To give away a late goal was so disappointing particularly after such a solid afternoon's performance from the boys," he declared. "We could then have still nicked it in added on injury time but somehow their defender managed to kick Manny Parry's close-range shot off the line.
"But I am pleased with the team's overall performance because we showed great commitment and we did a professional job on the home side," he continued. "To come up here and back in a day and get at least a point is tremendous and I feel we are continuing to make progress in the right direction in every game."
Hayrettin, who retained the same starting line-up that beat Torquay 2-0 in the FA Trophy game the previous Saturday, went on: "There's certainly no panic even though we know our position in the league and we have to start getting more points on the board to move up away from the relegation zone.
"We will do it certainly when the players give me 100 per cent as they have in this game," he continued. "I thought we were looked more composed throughout the game and yes there are still areas we need to work on but that will come."
Defensively the Iron looked as strong as they have for several games with the new found central defensive pairing of new signing Manny Parry and new loan signing Zak Jules from Reading.
"They have quickly got to know one another and in this game they both shone out in keeping quiet what were a lively front home line," he said. "Again we can build on that and again we shall competition for places with the likes of defender Jake Goodman and others coming back from injury."
With a wet and slippery playing surface it was difficult for the Iron to get into their stride in the first half with the only real goal threat coming on six minutes when Parry's header was headed off the line and over the bar for corner by a home defender.
Both sides though lacked any penetration in what was a disappointing first half but shortly after the restart it with striking partners Jack Midson and Michael Cheek creating problems for the home rearguard whenever they could while up at the other end Iron keeper Sam Beasant was on form to three times deny the home attack with good saves.
The deadlock was finally broken on 62 minutes when Iron substitute Reece Hall-Johnson drilled in a left wing corner to the near post where Cheek nipped in between two defenders for a typical goal-poacher's goal.
With extra confidence the Iron pushed for a second goal and both Midson with a header and a first time shot by Chez Isaac almost scored but all the Iron's good second half work was undone on 84 minutes when young Iron debutant and substitute Ebou Adams was adjudged by referee Peter Wright to have handled a high ball into the visitors' area to concede a penalty.
Paddy McLaughlin duly dispatched the spot kick low into the net beating the diving Beasant to level the scores.
The home side then pushed forward and Beasant again had to make another smart save whilst at the other end there was further frustration for the Iron when Parry's low close-range drive was somehow scrambled off the home goal line.
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Jules, Parry, Okimo; Isaac (Adams 75), Lee, Patterson (Hall-Johnson 58), Akinola; Cheek (Barnard 90+2), Midson. Unused subs: Maybanks, Rumens. Attendance: 501 (25 Iron supporters). Referee: Peter Wright.
Next up for the Iron is the rearranged league match at Boreham Wodd on Tuesday evening, kick off 7.45pm.

Next it's - Gateshead away
DB goes for a 2-2 draw
David Bland previews Saturday's trip to Gateshead.
Gateshead currently 12th place on 34 points. Home Record: Played 12, Won 4, Lost 2, Drawn 6 (18 points). Goals For: 20, Goal Against: 11. Last 4 home League games: Lost 0-1 Tranmere Rovers, Drew 1-1 Macclesfield Town, Drew 2-2 Eastleigh, Drew 2-2 Wrexham. Top scorers: Danny Johnson - 10, Sam Jones - 8, Wes York - 5.
Braintree Town currently 21st on 20 points. Away Record: Played 11. Won 4, Lost 5, Drawn 2 (14 points). Goals For: 12, Goals Against: 23. Last 4 away League games: Won Southport 4-5, Won Wrexham 0-1, Won Woking 2-3, Lost Dover A 6-1. Top scorers: Michael Cheek - 7, Lee Barnard - 5, Simeon Akinola - 4.
Last meeting was at Cressing Roadon 10 September where Braintree suffered a 4-1 defeat. Michael Cheek was the Iron scorer. Gateshead's last win was their 5-0 thrashing of Dagenham & Redbridge back on November 12th. Their last home win was a 4-2 victory over Dover Athletic on 8 October. The free scoring Iron however have had three away wins on the trot.
According to the Gateshead website; they should have a fully fit squad to choose from, which includes former Iron player Mitch Brundle. Transfer news: Hakan has drafted in 20 year old Ebou Adams from Norwich City. Hakan describes him as a tough tackling midfield plyer. Injury news: Continuing absence of Jake Goodman & Jon Ashton. Ian Gayle fit to resume playing.
Suspension news: No one suspended, Harry Lee is on 4 yellow cards. DB prediction: With Gateshead being the 5th joint highest scorers and Braintree having the 5th joint leakiest defence in the League, a goalless game seems very unlikely. I'm going for a 2-2 draw.

Talking with - Sim Akinola
David Bland tracks down our number ten
Next up in David Bland's player interviews is Simeon Akinola.
DOB 6/8/92 (24) Born Nigeria, came to UK in 2007. Previous Clubs: Boreham Wood, Harrow Borough.
Q. Do you have another job and if so, what is it?
A. No
Q. Who do you support?
A. Real Madrid
Q. Growing up, who was your boyhood hero?
A. Ronaldhino
Q. Best and worst ground you've played at?
A. Best-New Den (Millwall). Worst VCD Athletic
Q. What was the last album you bought?
A. Hillsong
Q. Not including Hakan, who has been the best manager you've played?
A. Devs & Danny Cowley
Q. How would you describe your footballing style?
A. Flair
Q. What are your strengths/weaknesses?
A. Strengths - Speed, dribbling, physical attributes. Weaknesses - need to shoot earlier
Q. What is your preferred position?
A. Number 10/up front
Q. Who is the best player in your position in England?
A. Eden Hazard (Chelsea)
Q. At what level do you think you can play?
A. Premier League (if all goes well!)
Q. What was it like to be captain?
A. Good, helps to give extra 5%, more team oriented.
Q. Who has been your most difficult opponent?
A. Omar Beckles now at Accrington Stanley, ex Aldershot.
Q. Who is the best/worst trainer at Braintree?
A. Best - Simeon. Worst Manny Parry
Q. If you could change any rule you would in football, what would it be?
A. No offsides, more goals would result.
Q. If you could play under any current manager, who would it be?
A. Jurgen Klopp
Q. What is the best Braintree Town XI in your time here?
A. Playing 4-3-3. Sam Beasant, Remy Clerima, Matt Paine, Sam Habergham, Chez Isaac, Alex Woodyard, Kenny Davis, Sim Akinola, Michael Cheek, James Mulley.

Hak adds midfielder from Norwich
Former Dartford youngster joins Iron
Braintree Town have signed 20-year old midfield player Ebou Adams on loan from Championship side Norwich City. Ebou signed for Norwich City in February for an undisclosed fee from National League South side, having progressed through the Darts Academy structure. It is hoped that, if all are happy, the loan will be extended for the remainder of the season.

Date for Iron XI to visit Chelmsford
Youngsters and trialists in Essex Cup
Iron have been drawn away at National League South side Chelmsford City in the Fifth Round of the BBC Essex Senior Cup. Although not a first team fixture, we will send a Braintree Town XI to Chelmsford on Monday, 16th January, with kick-off at (please note) 7.30pm.

East Thurrock away in Trophy Second Round
Iron drawn away in last 32
Braintree Town have been drawn away East Thurrock United in the Second Round of this season's Buildbase FA Trophy. The match will take place on Saturday, 14th January, with kick-off at 3pm.
Next up for Iron is a trip up to Gateshead this coming Saturday, 17th December, with kick-off at 3pm.

Iron into Trophy last 32
Jack brace sees Iron through
Iron took their first tentative steps on a possible road to Wembley thanks to a Jack Midson brace, scored in quick succession to secure a win at the Ironmongery Direct Stadium on Saturday. It was just reward for a team beaten back in August by the Gulls.
Torquay had the better of the quiet, uninspiring first half that saw few chances for either team. But in a first half where the defences controlled the game it was difficult to see a winner coming. The visitors' Nathan Blissett closely marked by Braintree's Manny Parry, had little to offer. At the other end the Iron's top scorer, Michael Cheek threatened but Brendon Moore in the Gull's goal had little to do.
Best chance before the break was from David Fitzpatrick who brought out a good save from Sam Beasant. Set pieces were dealt with in equal measure by both keepers.
The dressing room talks at half time must have made a difference as both teams seemed better organised and responsive to their respective managers plans. But the game was still in stalemate until Beasant had to be at his best to save, it was Fitzpatrick again that got a shot away that the Iron keeper clawed away.
That seemed to wake up the home side and a run by Sim Akinola brought out a fine save from Moore. Corners featured heavily during the second half with Iron having no less than 10 to Gull's one. It was one of those set piece plays that brought about the first of Midson's two goals.
An in-swinger from Harry Lee led to a melee in the six-yard box to which Jack stabbed home the ball. Three minutes later Midson was again on the score sheet. The combination of Cheek and Akinola were causing havoc amongst the Torquay defence and it was Cheek who laid off a ball into the path of Midson who fired home and put the game beyond reach.
Braintree continued to press and, despite four added minutes of time added, Braintree managed the game to its conclusion that sees them in the hat on Monday for the Second-Round Draw.
Iron Boss Hakan Heyrettin was pleased with his team's efforts. "I thought we played well in the first half but not good enough to find a goal before the break, after last weekend, we knew we had to do better in defence and Sam (Beasant) did that for us today. Jack (Midson) did a job and got the goals. We did better from the set pieces and we didn't concede from the restart".
Braintree: Beasant, Okimo, Clohessy, Parry, Jules, Patterson (Barnard 90), Isaac, Lee, Akinola (Hall-Johnson 85), Cheek, Midson. Subs not used: Rumens, Corne, Maybanks. Referee: Dean Traleaven. Attendance 301.
Next up for Iron is a trip up to Gateshead this coming Saturday, 17th December, with kick-off at 3pm.

Sutton at home - New date
Surrey club to visit in January
Braintree Town's outstanding Vanarama National League fixture at home to Sutton United, postponed because of both club's involvement in the FA Cup, has been re-arranged. The match will now take place on Tuesday, 10th January, with kick-off at 7.45pm. Both clubs have also agreed that, should both be beaten in their respective FA Trophy First Round matches over the coming weekend, the re-arranged game will then be switched to the following Saturday, 14th January, with kick-off at 3pm.

Club reaction to Council statement
Help us deliver a stadium at no cost to the community
Braintree Town Football Club have seen the statement on the BBC by 'a Braintree District Council spokesperson'. Link:
Chairman Lee Harding confirmed that negotiations on relocation began with the then Council Chief Executive Allan Reid as long ago as January 2004 and that these have continued for the past thirteen years. He said: "We at the Club believe we have a robust business plan to afford a new stadium that will not require any financial support from Braintree Council."
"To imply that helping the Club could cost the taxpayer is, at best, unfortunate. We wish to provide a new facility that, with the help of grant aid, is entirely self-funding. Bottom line: if we can't afford something, we won't have it! All we need now is to find a site and have our Council's support to build on it." he added.
Harding stated that the Club still hoped to find a solution: "We appreciate our Council's kind words about our being an asset and are confident that support for a new community stadium, funded by the Club, will have no impact whatsoever on our Council's ability 'to invest taxpayers' money wisely and prioritise according to need'."
He concluded by saying: "Many people have said to me that Braintree is often parochial and stuck in the 1950's, but I simply don't believe this. We want to provide an asset for both the Club and our community. So ask yourself this: if it will not cost our Council anything, what is wrong with helping a Braintree success story to progress?"

FA Cup exit at Millwall
Iron impress but come up second best
Braintree Town's involvement in this season's Emirates FA Cup competition came to an end at Millwall yesterday afternoon, as they were beaten 5-2 by the Sky Bet League One side. Iron took the lead through Michael Cheek on 16 minutes. The Braintree forward burst through the home defence before drilling the ball into the top left hand corner. But Millwall were level straight from the re-start when Harry Smith picked up a pass from Lee Gregory inside the box and tucked the ball past Sam Beasant. Four minutes later Smith added his second when he picked up the ball at the far post and drilled his low effort past Beasant. Shane Ferguson added a third on 25 minutes when his shot from wide on the left just crept past Beasant. Jack Midson pulled a goal back ten minutes before the break when he broke through the home defence and lifted the ball over home keeper Jordan Archer. But Millwall restored their two goal advantage three minutes into the second half, as Smith completed his hat-trick, and ten Aiden O'Brien scored a fifth in time added on with Braintree players caught pushing forward.

Iron bolster squad
Central defender joins from Reading
Iron manager Hakan Hayrettin has added nineteen year old central defender Zak Jules on a short-term loan from Reading. Zak is a left-footed centre-half who is a powerful figure both in the air and on the ball. He has represented Scotland at U19 level having already reached the UEFA U17 Championship semi-finals with his country. He was handed squad number 22 for the start of the 2016-17 season by Reading.

Borehamwood away - new date
Iron try again the Tuesday before Christmas
The Vanarama National League fixture at Borehamwood, postponed last Tuesday because of a frozen pitch, has been re-arranged. Braintree will now visit Meadow Park on Tuesday 20th December, with kick-off at 7.45pm.

Talking with - Chez Isaac
David Bland gets a new Friday feature underway
Regular Forum and Facebook scribe David Bland has picked up the challenge from the Chairman of coming along on cold, damp Thursday evenings and having an informal chat with one of the lads to update you all. Last night he sat down with Chez and here's what he gleaned -

DOB: 16/11/92 - 24 years old.
Previous clubs - Watford, Tamworth, Boreham Wood and signed for Braintree July 2013.
Q. Do you have another job?
A. Yes, Recruitment Consultant.
Q. Who do you support?
A. Tottenham Hotspur.
Q. What was last gig you went to?
A. Arctic Monkeys
Q. Not including Hakan, who has been the best manager you've played for and why?
A. Danny Cowley. Considering he was a full time PE Teacher, the time and effort he put in was phenomenal. He and Nicky put their life and soul into managing the club.
Q. How would you describe your footballing style?
A. Firstly, hardworking, team player.
Q. What are your strengths/weaknesses?
A. Strengths, work rate, tackling, passing. Weakness, heading.
Q. What is your preferred position?
A. Centre midfield.
Q. Best goal for Braintree?
A. Away at Luton, 12 April 2014.
Q. What have been the best/worst grounds you've played at?
A. Best, White Hart Lane. Worst, Stanway Rovers.
Q. At what level do you think you can play?
A. League One.
Q. Who is the best player in English football, in your position?
A. Moussa Dembele.
Q. Pre 2014/15 you were given the opportunity to talk to a League Club, was there any definite offers?
A. Yes from Dagenham & Redbridge, but it didn't work out.
Q. before the start of this season you were one of the few players left from 2015/16, what was that like?
A. Worrying, it was like moving to a new club not knowing anyone.
Q. Are you still in touch with any of the players who left?
A. Yes, Paine - going to his stag do in Prague, Davis, Marks, Brundle, Sparkes.
Q. What was it like to be made captain?
A. Good, learnt a lot from Kenny.
Q. Are you confident that we'll finish outside the bottom four this season?
A. Yes, better players and team spirit now.
Q. What music should the team come out to?
A. Do You Know What I Mean - Oasis.
Q. If you could change any rule in football, what would it be?
A. Get rid of 5 yellow cards ban.
Q. If you could play under any current manager in England, who would it be?
A. Jurgen Klopp.
Q. Who are the best XI you have played with at Braintree?
A. Playing 4-3-3: Norris, Peters, Wells, Massey, Habergham, Davis, Paine, Woodyard, Akinola, Marks, Sparkes.

FA Cup tickets on sale Thursday evening
Get yours from the Clubhouse
Tickets for Sundays's Emirates FA Cup Second Round tie at Millwall will be on sale in the Iron Clubhouse on Thursday evening, 1st December, from 7.30pm - 9pm.
Ticket prices are as follows, with 20% reductions for Braintree Town season ticket holders.

Adults - 15 or 12 for Season Ticket Holders
Over 60s - 10 or 8 for Season Ticket Holders
Under 16s - 5 or 4 for Season Ticket Holders

All tickets are for seats.

Trip to Borehamwood postponed
Pitch is frozen
Tuesday evening's scheduled Vanarama National League fixture at Borehamwood was postponed at 6.45pm. The match referee decided that the goalmouths and far side of the pitch were unsafe and, with the forecast weather for the evening, unlikey to improve. News on a new date when we have it.

Torquay at home in the FA Trophy
Home tie set for Saturday, 10th December
Braintree Town have been drawn at home in the Buildbase FA Trophy First Round to fellow Vanarama National League side Torquay United. The match will take place at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium a week on Saturday, 10th December, with kick-off at 3pm.
The First round draw is as follows:

1 Gateshead v King's Lynn Town
2 Farsley Celtic or Tamworth v Southport
3 Solihull Moors v Matlock Town or FC Halifax Town
4 Shaw Lane Association v Lincoln City
5 Gainsborough Trinity or Alfreton Town v North Ferriby United
6 Kidderminster Harriers v AFC Telford United
7 FC United Of Manchester or Nuneaton Town v Stocksbridge Park Steels or Stalybridge Celtic
8 Harrogate Town or Salford City v Barrow
9 AFC Fylde v Mickleover Sports or Brackley Town
10 York City v Curzon Ashton or Worcester City
11 Chorley or Stafford Rangers v Guiseley
12 Witton Albion or Boston United v Chester
13 Wrexham v Tranmere Rovers
14 Altrincham or Blyth Spartans v Macclesfield Town
15 Stockport County v Darlington 1883 or Marine
16 Ebbsfleet United v Woking
17 Chelmsford City v Hitchin Town
18 Dagenham & Redbridge v Worthing or Hemel Hempstead Town
19 Harlow Town v Eastleigh
20 Whitehawk or St Albans City v Poole Town or Weymouth
21 Braintree Town v Torquay United
22 Margate or East Thurrock United v Aldershot Town
23 Dulwich Hamlet v Hampton & Richmond Borough or Royston Town
24 Welling United v Hythe Town
25 Maidenhead United or Wealdstone v Wingate & Finchley
26 Dartford v Dover Athletic
27 South Park v North Leigh
28 AFC Sudbury v Gosport Borough
29 Sutton United v Bath City
30 Forest Green Rovers v Truro City
31 Boreham Wood v Maidstone United
32 Bromley v Leiston or Eastbourne Borough

Odd goal in nine victory
Club extend six-year unbeaten run at Southport
A battling performance from the Iron in this nine-goal thriller at the Merseyrail Community Stadium on Saturday saw them grab a fantastic win that moves them out of the relegation places and left manager Hakan Hayrettin searching for a stiff post match drink!
"It was a great comeback from being 3-1 down in the first half to go in at the interval 4-3 up but it was enough to turn me drink," he declared. "We had a great start taking the lead within 58 seconds of the kick-off but then through basic schoolboy errors let ourselves concede three goals by the half hour mark.
"But full marks to the players who showed great character in coming back straight away and it was crucial we were at least level pegging at the interval," he continued.
"But to regain the lead in first half stoppage time gave us the platform to on to win the game and in the second half I felt we were in control of the game but needed to score a couple more goals to give us some breathing space."
Hayrettin, with an injury hit squad drafted in central defender Manny Parry to form a new defensive partnership with 19 year-old Danny Rumens, was also grateful for two fine second half saves from keeper Sam Beasant to keep his side in the lead.
"He did really well but it was a true team effort and I am proud of all the boys" he added. "We can now build on this win and we can keep making it step by step as we progress and obviously another win away from home gives everyone an added confidence."
The goals feast certainly made it an entertaining afternoon for the watching 866 fans including the loyal 19 Iron fans who made the long day journey north.
It was Michael Cheek who gave them the early lead tapping the ball in at far post from Sean Clohessy right wing cross and five minutes later was unlucky not to add a second but home keeper Magnus Norman pulled off a great save.
But on 16 minutes the home side drew level through some poor Iron defending with Jack Higgins scrambling the ball home from close range.
Again schoolboy defending by the Iron saw the home side score twice in two minutes with Josh Thompson left unmarked at the far post to head home on 27 minutes then from the kick off a back pass by Harry Lee to keeper Beasant left him to try and clear it first time only for the clearance to ricochet off Andrai Jones low into the corner of the net.
Despite these two errors, the Iron came strongly from 3-1 down and on 30 minutes young Rumens brilliantly headed home a Monty Patterson corner for his first goal for the club and on 36 minutes Ollie Muldoon fired home a low, left wing free-kick straight into the home net after Cheek had been fouled.
The Iron kept up the pressure and right on half time the hard working Cheek netted his second with a tap in from another Muldoon free-kick.
Now 4-3 up the Iron set about adding to their score and they had chances but it was home side who equalised on 56 minutes when Beasant brought the on-rushing Jones down in the area and Jamie Allen scored from the penalty spot.
But Iron kept going forward and on 64 minutes Jack Midson headed a great ball into the home net from a Patterson corner.
It was no more than the Iron deserved but it took a brilliant save by Beasant on 74 minutes to ensure his side returned home with all three points and deserved so in a match which was not for faint-hearted!
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Parry, Rumens, Okimo; Patterson (Hall Johnson 90), Muldoon (Isaac 68), Lee, Akinola; Cheek (Barnard 84), Midson. unused subs, Gayle, Matthews.

Hak adds to Iron squad
Defender joins the club
Braintree Town manager Hakan Hayrettin has further strengthened his first team squad with the signing of 22-year old central defender Immanuel (Manny) Parry from National League South side Margate. A 6'4" defender, Manny started his career as a Millwall schoolboy before moving on to Stoke City in 2011, where he signed his first contract. He spent 2012/13 at Nuneaton and then last season at Maidstone United.

Players respond in adversity
Iron battle for a point
Iron pulled off a fantastic second half escape act against all odds to salvage a fully deserved point against Kent rivals Bromley at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium on Tuesday evening.
It was all down to character and commitment from a home side forced into having a makeshift defence that still managed to hold on for a vital point that moves them up to fourth from bottom in the league and another step towards escaping the relegation zone.
The team without experienced defender George Elokobi recalled the previous day by Colchester United, had to be changed twice just before the kick off with striker Simeon Akinola going to Bromley's ground where he thought the game was being played, forcing manager Hakan Hayrettin to name him as a substitute because he only arrived at Cressing Road during the first half.
Then minutes before the start central defender Jon Ashton apparently tweaked a calf muscle in the warm-up so Hayrettin was forced to replace him with new central-defender Danny Rumens in the heart of the defence.
It then went from bad to worse for the Iron because central defender Jake Goodman was forced off after just 13 minutes with a pulled hamstring leaving Hayrettin to again hurriedly reshuffle his back line, moving full-back Jerome Okimo to replace him and bringing on midfielder Chez Issac as an emergency right-back.
"I've never known such bad luck in all the years in the game - I couldn't believe it and wondered what was going to happen next," exclaimed a hoarse Hayrettin afterwards. "They were going down like ninepins but full credit to all the players, particularly those asked to play out of their normal position, every one stuck to their task and fought and battled hard.
"Even when we went 2-1 down early in the second half I knew the players wouldn't give up and they didn't to a man," he continued. "They showed such resilience, heart and character and once we had equalised I felt we could still go on an win it despite having a makeshift side, but a point is a point and in the circumstances and I'll take it."
Despite their enforced team changes the Iron made a terrific start by taking the lead in the opening minute, all from a long throw-in from Harry Lee into the visitors' penalty box where everyone appeared to miss it until it reached Reece Hall-Johnson who rammed the ball into the net.
The Iron's joy was short-lived though because on seven minutes the visitors equalised when the newly re-organised defence was caught out allowing Tobi Sho-Silva to beat keeper Sam Beasant.
With poor defending at either end it was clear more goals would follow with the visitors looking the more dangerous in front of goal and late on in the first half they hit the post while up at the other end on 41 minutes Iron's young loanee Sam Matthews curled a neat free-kick just over the Bromley bar.
The visitors initially came out strongly early in the second half and Beasant produced a great point-blank save from Lee Minishall, pushing the ball over the bar, but from the resultant corner Minishall found space and a little time at the back post to head home.
But the Iron players fought back immediately and with Akinola on after 57 minutes both he, Michael Cheek and Ollie Muldoon all went close to scoring.
The break through came on 68 minutes when the Iron deservedly equalised thanks to a fine cross into the box by Hall-Johnson where Cheek managed to stoop low in between two defenders and head home.
This equaliser gave the Iron players even more confidences to go forward looking for a possible winner and though substitute Lee Barnard and Cheek both came close they couldn't find that extra but of quality to seal a victory.
"It was a great result in the end for us and I am pleased with a point in the circumstances but we now look ahead to Saturday's trip to Southport and a win," said Hayrattin. "With Jake out for possibly two-three weeks getting an experienced central defender in is a must and I'll be working hard to do just that."
He added: "It will also be Ollie's last game with us on loan as he is returning to Charlton Athletic."
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Okimo, Goodman (Isaac 13), Rumens; Matthews (Akinola 57), Muldoon, Lee, Hall-Johnson (Barnard 87); Cheek, Midson. Unused sub: Maybanks. Attendance: 521. Referee: Christopher O'Donnell.

Millwall tickets on sale tonight
In the Clubhouse after the game
Tickets for our FA Cup Second Round tie away at Millwall will be on sale in the Clubhouse five minutes after the game finishes this evening.
Tickets sales tonight will be restricted to Club season ticket holders and members of the FSA.
Tickets will go on general sale on Thursday evening, 24th November, in the Clubhouse from 7.30-9pm and on Thursday evening, 1st December, in the Clubhouse from 7.30-9pm.

Denied by the hand of -
Iron match Tranmere but end up without reward
JUST how cruel football can be at times was clearly evident at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium on Saturday when the Iron having dominated large parts of the game, certainly in the second half for long spells, fell to a sucker punch on a counter attack to concede what turned out to be the winning goal 14 minutes from time.
The Iron had been pressing hard and seen two shots cleared off the Rovers' goal line, denied two penalty appeals, one in each half, only to see visiting striker Andy Cook latch on to a long clearance up field and unleashed a fantastic 25 yard shot into the roof of the Iron net giving keeper Sam Beasant no chance.
It was a heartbreaking end for the Iron players in what as an entertaining game of football that saw chances at both end while overall the home side had done enough to deserve at least a draw.
It left Iron manager Hakan Hayrettin bitterly disappointed at the outcome but he was full of praise for his players adding: "They were all tremendous and were outstanding for the whole game having competed against them in every department and matched them too while constantly forcing them on to the backfoot.
"But it's a small margin between getting something or nothing at all like today but I am really proud of the team and I still feel we've made vast improvements in the short time I've been here," he continued. "I felt we could have had a penalty in either half and on one of the two goal line clearances our players nearest to it felt the ball had crossed the line.
"Also how their defender got away with handling the ball on the line from a downward header by George (Elokobi) I just don't know," he went on. "They then immediately break away on the counter-attack and the boy hit's a wonder goal and I bet anyone he will never score another one like it."
Hayrettin went on: "We should have never lost and I feel we were hard done by but that's football and you have to get on with it. They are a full time side, full of expensive and experienced players but we showed we were more than a match for them and we know that every game at this level for us it a tough one.
"But we are making progress and heading in the right direction but we must start to get points on the board and I am confident we soon will," he added.
Iron started the game with just one enforced change from the side that beat Wrexham the previous week with Sam Matthews coming in for Monty Patterson, away on World Cup duty with New Zealand, and they took the game to the visitors from the kick off with Michael Cheek and Simeon Akinola both going close.
The visitors did get the ball in the Iron early on but the goal was rightly ruled out for offside and they also had a great chance to take the lead on 32 minutes when Andy Mangan was adjudged by referee Adrian Quelch to have been fouled in the area by Jake Goodman.
It was one of several decisions given against the Iron during the afternoon, but Beasant pulled off a fine save with his legs to keep the sides level.
The early stages of the second half saw the Iron well on top and could have had a penalty when visiting defender Lee Vaughan clearly handled Elokobi's header from a corner on the goal line.
The Iron kept up the pressure and missed three difficult chances to score while up at the other end the visitors also went close with two shots they blasted over the bar in what was an end-to-end game that provided fine entertainment for the 964 crowd.
The visitors should have been reduced to 10 men for the last 20 minutes of the game when Jay Hughes, already booked for stamping on Ollie Muldoon, escaped with only a telling off for another crude, professional foul on an Iron player.
But it was all settled on 76 minutes when the visitors broke away and the ball fell kindly into the path of Cook who volleyed an unstoppable first time shot into the top corner of the Iron net.
Despite this setback the Iron kept pushing forward for what would have been a deserved equaliser but it didn't come and they ended up losing a game in which they should have at least gained a point.
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Goodman, Elokobi, Okimo; Matthews (Maybanks 81), Lee, Muldoon (Isaac 86), Akinola; Barnard (Midson 81), Cheek. Unused subs: Ashton, Hall-Johnson. Referee: Adrian Quelch. Attendance: 964.
Next up for the Iron is a home league game against Bromley on Tuesday, kick off 7.45pm.

Tranmere visit - Match Arrangements
Segregation in place
For Braintree Town's Vanarama National League fixture at home to Tranmere Rovers this coming Saturday, 19th November, segregation WILL be in force. The game will be a category 'A' match. Given the larger than usual crowd expected for this match, spectators are advised to be inside the ground by 2.30pm. Prices for the match will be as follows:

Seats adults 18, Seats concessions 12
Ground adults 17, Ground OAPs and concessions 11
Ground U16s 6 and Ground U11s 4

To gain entry to the ground, visiting spectators should use the two turnstiles to the right of the Main Stand and clubhouse, numbered 7 and 8. Home spectators should use the four turnstiles to the left on the clubhouse, numbered 1, 2, 3 and 4. Any spectators found in the incorrect section of the stadium will be in breach of the Club's stadium rules and may be ejected.

The Club are mindful of the limited parking we have available at the ground. Following the advice received from Essex Police, the Club have decided to charge for entry into the car park - with a flat rate of 2 for all users. Essex Police have also suggested that the car park be closed prior to kick-off to ensure that there is no congestion between pedestrian spectators and vehicles. No vehicles will be allowed entry into the car park within 15 minutes prior to kick-off.

Those travelling to the Cressing Road Stadium for the first time can find more information on how best to travel by clicking on the 'Find Us' link above. The Clubhouse at the Cressing Road Stadium can only be accessed from inside the designated home section of the ground. For further information, please contact the Club on 01376 345617 or 01376 330976.

Battling performance in North Wales
Iron work hard to secure their win
Iron picked up all three points with a hard fought win at the Racecourse Ground on Saturday thanks to a first half goal from Michael Cheek and some determined and organised defending in the second half.
It left manager Hakan Hayrettin a delighted man and full of praise for his players' "hard work, discipline and collectively working for one another" and he believes that with back-to-back wins they've taken another step forward.
"I believe too we have turned the corner but there's still a lot of further improvement to made," he declared. "We knew it would be hard coming to such a massive stadium and big home crowd but full marks to all the boys because they soaked up the pressure when they had to and still kept going forward and creating further goal scoring chances."
He went on: "The players now know the key is that they have to work hard when they are without the ball and not allow themselves to be rolled over and they did exactly that in this game."
Hayrettin, who kept the same starting side that thumped Eastbourne Borough the previous week, continued: "The players won the game because they worked hard from start to finish, showed great resilience under pressure but kept their focus on the game."
He added: "We had been to watch Wrexham so we knew what to expect but I felt we controlled the game and really in the second half we should have scored twice more to give us more breathing space."
Hayrettin certainly has the Iron side playing their best football of the season and with now a much stronger and well organised defence they also equally look more threatening every time they attack.
The home side naturally started stronger backed by a big home crowd of 3,413 and they did get the ball into the Iron net after only four minutes but John Rooney's deflected shot was rightly ruled offside.
Once Iron keeper Sam Beasant had pulled off a great save on 21 minutes from a Curtis Tilt shot it was the visitors who broke away down the other end and within a further minute had taken the lead.
It all stemmed from a long throw-in from Harry Lee which was headed on at the near post by Jake Goodman to the far post where the unmarked Cheek stealthily cruised in head home.
Buoyed with the goal the Iron went looking for a second and they put pressure on the home defence with Lee Barnard only being denied a goal thanks to an exceptional save by on-loan 'keeper Luke Coddington.
The early part of the second half saw the Iron defence naturally put under pressure as the home side went looking for an equaliser but they dug deep and contained the home attacks.
With the Iron showing fine form with their counter-attacks Barnard again was only denied by another Cuddington save and then on 72 minutes from an Ollie Muldoon corner Goodman saw his effort kicked off the home goal line.
Ten minutes later the Iron should have made the game save when substitute Jack Midson fed a fine ball in from the right to the unmarked Simeon Akinola who some 12 yards out and with a gaping goal in front of him somehow lifted the ball over the bar.
In the final few minutes of the game the home side tried to make a late rally in a bid to snatch an equaliser but the Iron players continued to work hard collectively and deservedly held on to make it three successive wins in a row again the Welsh side.
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Goodman, Elokobi, Okimo; Lee, Barnard (Isaac 83), Muldoon, Patterson (Hall-Johnson 90); Cheek (Midson 70), Akinola. Unused subs: Gayle, Maybanks. Attendance: 3,143.
Next up for the Iron is this coming Saturday, 19th November, when they entertain Tranmere Rovers at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium in another Vanarama National League fixture, with kick-off at 3pm.

Ticket prices for FA Cup tie
Price reductions for season ticket holders
Ticket prices for the Emirates FA Cup Second Round tie at Millwall are as follows, with 20% reductions for Braintree Town season ticket holders.

Adults - 15 or 12 for Season Ticket Holders
Over 60s - 10 or 8 for Season Ticket Holders
Under 16s - 5 or 4 for Season Ticket Holders

All tickets are for seats. Tickets for the Braintree Town designated section of the ground will ONLY be on sale from the IronmongeryDirect Stadium. As soon as the tickets are received from Millwall we will announce when the tickets will be going on sale.

Date agreed for FA Cup tie
Iron set to visit League One Side Millwall
A date has been agreed for Braintree Town's Emirates FA Cup Second Round away to Sky Bet League One side Millwall. This match will now take place on Sunday, 4th December, with kick-off at (please note) 2pm.

Away trip in FA Cup Second Round
Iron set to visit League One Side Millwall
Braintree Town have been drawn away to Sky Bet League One side Millwall in the Second Round of this season's Emirates FA Cup. This match will take place over the weekend of 3rd-4th December. Our progress in this season's competition will also dictate the postponement of our Vanarama National league fixture scheduled for Saturday, 3rd December at home to Sutton United, which will now be re-arranged. More news on the details for the match at Millwall and a new date for our game at home to Sutton United when we have it.
A reminder that, next up for the Iron is an Essex Senior Cup tie against Maldon & Tiptree at home on this evening, kick off 7.45pm. Admission this evening is just 5 for adults and 3 for OAPs and U16s to all parts of the ground.

Iron make FA Cup history
Hakan's lads enter unchartered territory
Iron made it into the second round of the FA Cup for the first time in their history after the complete demolition of their Vanarama National South visitors at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium on Saturday.
It was also their biggest ever FA Cup win for 85 years since they beat Felixstowe Town in the Preliminary Round back in the 1931/32 season but it was the manner of this latest victory that delighted manager Hakan Hayrettin.
"I'm delighted for the boys because they took the game by the scruff of the neck right from the first whistle and never gave up," he explained. "We created goal scoring chances from the off and this week, unlike last week's league game against Solihull, they took their chances and what a difference it made.
"I felt we were comfortable throughout, controlled the game, set the tempo and kept it up right to the end," he continued. "But you always need to score goals and that's what we did leading comfortably 3-0 at the interval during which I said to them do it all again in the second half and don't ease up' and I'm pleased they responded as they did."
Defensively the Iron looked as strong as they have this season and this improvement was helped by the impressive right-back debut of 29 year-old Sean Clohessy, who played 44 games for Leyton Orient last season and has Football League experience with both Colchester and Southend.
"He brings the right experience we need in that position at the current time and I'm pleased the Club have allowed me to sign him on permanently as he was a free agent," said Hayrettin. "As a team we are now heading in the right direction and taking it a step at a time and I am pleased that the experienced Lee Barnard is now making an impact in the side, particularly when it comes to helping the younger players around him."
Barnard, who has his best game in Iron colours, helped himself to two goals in this game, tapping in a close range shot after Simeon Akinola's right wing lob shot had come back off the post on 68 minutes and six minutes later firing home a penalty after Akinola had been brought down.
In reality this match was over as a contest by half time because the Iron were so dominant taking the lead on six minutes when Monty Patterson was quick to follow up a loose ball after keeper Lewis Carey had only managed to parry a back post header from Michael Cheek from a fine cross from Barnard.
On 11 minutes Iron added a second when a left wing corner from Patterson was nodded into the net off the woodwork by George Elokobi for his first goal for the club.
The third goal came on 21 minutes when a low 25 yard free-kick from the left by Ollie Muldoon seem to elude everyone as he drilled into the bottom far corner of the net, although Elokobi was adamant he managed to get the final touch on the ball to claim the goal.
The visitors did start the second half in a more positive attacking manner but with Iron keeper Sam Beasant handling the ball well so giving confidence to his defenders in front and both Elokobi and Jake Goodman solid in the heart of the back line they never really troubled in front of goal.
Once Barnard had scored his goals and with the Iron continuing to look dangerous every time they entered the visitors' area it was not surprise they added a sixth goal on 83 minutes and it was that man Elokobi who managed to glance the ball into the net with his head from a corner by substitute Reece Hall-Johnson.
Deservedly for all his creative running and work-rate throughout the game it was Akinola who scored the seventh goal two minutes from time when he cut in from the left and from the edge of the area sent in a beautifully curling right-foot shot into the far corner of the net giving keeper Carey no chance.
So it was not only a comprehensive win for the Iron and carried out in a fine manner from a side that took its chances from the start and never looked back, it was also creating a bit of club history in the making.
Braintree Town: Beasant; Clohessy, Goodman, Elokobi, Okimo; Patterson (Matthews 62), Lee, Muldoon (Hall-Johnson 81), Akinola; Cheek (Midson 73), Barnard. Unused subs: Williams, Gayle, Ashton. Attendance: 645. Referee: Stephen Ross.
Next up for the Iron is an Essex Senior Cup game against Maldon and Tiptree at home on Tuesday, kick off 7 45pm.

Fixture change
Trip to Dagenham back 24 hours
Braintree Town's Vanarama National League fixture away to Essex neighbours Dagenham & Redbridge has been changed. Originally scheduled for New Year's Day, the match will now be delayed by one day and be played on the evening of Bank Holiday Monday, 2nd January, with kick-off at 7.45pm.

Mistake costs Iron
Dominance goes unrewarded
Iron suffered a heartbreak defeat against visitors Solihull Moors conceding a penalty goal four minutes from time at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium on Saturday, having dominated most of the game and missed six or seven goal scoring chances to have helped them win comfortably.
It left manager Hakan Hayrettin a frustrated man at the final whistle and he kept his players on the pitch for a good 15 minutes talking to adding: "Some players didn't do as they were told towards the end which meant we conceded the ball when in a good attacking position up at their end, they break away and we defended abysmally down the right and allowed them to gain a penalty which they didn't really deserve.
"It really hurts me because we should have had this game wrapped up by half time and been at least three goals ahead," he said. "The trouble is we have a lack of consistency from some players in certain positions and you can't legislate for it, but I intend to get it sorted and sorted fairly quickly because it has to be done for us to move up the table.
He went on: "Yes, they came with a game plan but we showed far more authority and dominance in every department and were well in command, created the chances and we should have taken some of them and we would have had the win we so badly need."
Admitting the visitors' victory was "daylight robbery" Hayrettin said: "I think up until the penalty they had just one decent shot on our goal in each half and no more but you can't waste all the seven or eight clearcut chances we had prior to that."
The bright spots for Hayrettin was the solid performance in goal from fit again goalkeeper Sam Beasant after a month's absence and the debut of on-loan young striker from Ipswich Town, Monty Patterson, who showed guile and creativity every time when he was on the ball.
With Lee Barnard and Michael Cheek beginning to show an impressive partnership up front and Chez Isaac and Oli Muldoon controlling the midfield, Iron were well on top in the first half but the nearest Iron came to scoring was when on 16 minute a left wing cross from from Jerome Okimo was headed against the visitors' bar by Barnard before being cleared.
Isaac, Patterson, Cheek and Simeon Akinola all saw possible decent goal chances go begging and it was much the same in the second half with visiting keeper Danny Lewis the far busier of the two custodians.
Twice Patterson was in on goal but he shots were parried away and in the second half chances fell to both Barnard and Cheek twice when so close to finding the net just missing the cross by literally inches and when Muldoon and Isaac fired shot on target there was always a defender on hand to kick the ball away at the last moment.
With young Patterson substituted with tiring legs almost on the hour the lively young substitute Sam Matthews immediately created a couple of chances for Cheek and Barnard but they were just wide of the target.
As the game entered the final minutes it looked as it the Iron were disappointingly going to at least a draw but that all went horribly wrong on 85 minutes when right-back Ian Gayle was badly caught out unnecessarily bringing down Andy Brown in the area leaving referee Dean Treleaven no option but to point to the penalty spot.
It left substitute Harry White the simple task of driving the kick low and hard into the left-hand corned of the net giving Beasant no chance.
It was a bitterly disappointing end to a game in which the Iron had dominated throughout and should have won at least two or three clear goals.
Braintree Town: Beasant; Gayle (Midson 87), Goodman, Elokobi, Okimo; Isaac, Muldoon, Patterson (Matthews 57), Akinola; Barnard Dias (80), Cheek. Unused subs: Lee, Ashton. Attendance: 625.
Next up for the Iron is at home next Saturday in the Emirates FA Cup first round against Eastbourne Borough, kick off 3pm.

New Iron faces at Woking
Keeper and striker join
Tuesday evening's match at Woking saw debuts to Hakan's latest two additions to the squad. Joining Iron are 19-year old striker Monty Patterson from Ipswich Town. Born in New Zealand, Monty moved to England three years ago and has played ten games at both under 23 and full level for his home country. Also coming into the squad is 21 year old goalkeeper Daniel Lincoln who was a trainee at Reading before loan spells at Nuneaton and Hayes & Yeading were followed by finishing last season at Basingstoke.

Iron back in touch
Rousing second half at Woking
Iron ended a run of six Vanarama National League matches without a win at Woking on Tuesday evening to move level on points with 20th place in the table. Ahead early on, then 2-1 behind, Braintree rallied after the break to win by the odd goal in five.
Iron had the best possible start after just three minutes. Awarded a free-kick 25 yards out, Oli Muldoon's sweetly struck effort was deflected passed stranded Woking keeper Brandon Hall for an early lead. But the home side responded and Joe Jones levelled from within the six yard box after 26 minutes and then Fabio Saraiva's well struck free-kick evaded Iron's latest debutante keeper Dan Lincoln on the half-hour. Gozie Ugwu looked set to add a third just before the break, but his effort was ruled out for offside.
After the interval Braintree dominated for lengthy periods and Michael Cheek levelled things up at 2-2 when he steered his header past Hall. The Iron recovery was completed with eight minutes remaining when Sim Akinola chased down a hopeful through-ball to tuck his effort past Hall from inside the box to secure the 3-2 win.
After the game Hakan was delighted: "I'm really pleased for the lads because they all took time out on Monday night to go through what went wrong at Dover on Saturday and, as a group, we've responded. It was a real test of our character to go behind having led early on, but our second half show gives us something to build on for Saturday."

Heavy defeat at Dover
Hak apologies to the fans
Iron suffered their heaviest defeat at National League level when they were well beaten at Dover's Crabble ground on Saturday.
Despite taking the lead on 12 minutes with a fine shot delivered into the top corner of the home net by Bournemouth loanee Sam Matthews, Iron allowed the home side to equalise six minutes later through former Iron defender Aswad Thomas and it was one-way traffic thereafter.
The home side were given so much space and time each time they attacked the Iron defence in the first half they scored four more goals before the interval effectively ending the game as a contest.
The goal glut was led by home striker Ricky Miller who was rarely closed down and was left to score a hat-trick by the interval and added a fourth three minutes after the restart.
It was a poor performance by Iron and had the home side not taken their foot off the accelerator in that second period they could well have scored more.
It left Hayrettin a disappointed man afterwards and he apologised to the loyal band of Iron fans who witnessed the display adding: "The players got it all wrong and for a start didn't do the basics allowing the opposition players to have so much room and time, not closing them down quickly enough and allowing them free shots at our goal.
"I had to have a real go at all of them at half time and in the second half I felt we did improve, showed more cohesion and created chances but when you're 5-1 at half time it's a mountain to climb," he declared. "But it's done now, there's nothing we can do about it and we have to shake ourselves out of this disappointment and look ahead to Tuesday's game and get back to the way we played last week in beating Bromley."
Hayrettin is calling all his first team squad in on Monday evening, prior to the Woking, to watch the video of the Dover and "to go through everything so they can learn the lessons and see where they went wrong."
With experienced goalkeeper Will Puddy returning to Bristol Rovers and central defender Jack Cowgill going back to Barnsley after their respective loan periods it meant a reshuffle for Hayrettin who brought in young keeper Joe Taylor from Dartford who conceded five goals in the first 40 minutes!
But there was a lack of organisation and cohesion right through the side and this game clearly shows Hayrettin has to bring in new players who can play and perform consistently at this level if the Iron are to move up away from the foot of the table.
Miller scored on 22, 26 and 33 minutes to complete his hat-trick with Jack Parkinson adding the home side's fifth on 40 minutes but by then the Iron players were facing defeat.
With both Jon Ashton and Jack Midson coming off the bench early in the second half, Iron did at last try and play some football with both Simeon Akinola and George Elokobi both going close but they were never going to get back in the game being five goals adrift.
Joe Maybanks also came off the bench with 18 minutes to go and three times made good, forward runs into the home area but each time a defender managed to kick the ball clear of any danger.
The home side were happy to sit back and take it easy in the second half with a such a lead and ran out comfortable winners on the day.
Braintree Town: Taylor; Williams (Ashton 53), Okimo, Gayle, Elokobi; Isaac, Muldoon, Lee (Midson 72), Matthews (Maybanks 72); Cheek, Akinola. Unused subs: Barnard, Corne. Attendance: 1,073. Referee: Neil Hair.

Hakan adds to squad
Three sign up for The Iron
Braintree Town manager Hakan Hayrettin has continued his squad re-building programme with three signings. Added to the Iron squad are goalkeeper Joe Taylor, who joins from Dartford, Claudio Dias from Brackley Town and signing first team forms - Luke Mallett, who progresses to the first team squad from our Academy.

Eastbourne at home in the Cup
Iron given opportunity to avenge 2008
Braintree Town have been drawn at home to National League South side Eastbourne Borough in the FA Cup First Round. Iron fans will have vivid memories of the last meetings with the Sussex club in 2008. Braintree needed to win their last game of the 2007/08 season to reach the then Conference South play-offs and did so 1-0 at home to Eastbourne Borough! In the play-offs an injury ravaged Iron side were then drawn home and away against Eastbourne again in the semi-finals and Braintree lost 2-0 at home and 3-0 away to go out 5-0 on aggregate! Eastbourne went on the secure promotion to the then Conference Premier with a play-off final win over Hampton, but were relegated back to the South Division in 2011 - the year Braintree were finally promoted to non-League football's top division! The FA Cup tie is likely to take place at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium on Saturday, 5th November with kick-off scheduled for 3pm.
Next up for the Iron is a trip to Dover Athletic for a Vanarama National League game on Saturday, October 22, kick off 3pm.

Iron back from the dead!
Maybanks ignites Iron comeback
In what was a typical FA Cup tie with end to end entertainment for 90 minutes and six goals plus plenty of drama, the Iron came back from the dead! Two goals down, Braintree rallied to secure their first win under new manager Hakan Hayrettin and put themselves into the hat for Monday evening's First Round draw.
It was no more than the Iron deserved for their all round effort and commitment in the second half having been second best in a one-sided first half with the visitors scoring deep in the added on time of three minutes through Blair Turgott.
The Iron then conceded a second goal six minutes into the restart when Turgott again slipped through the Iron defence to score and they looked unlikely to progress.
But four minutes later the irrepressible Michael Cheek gave them a lifeline with a superbly taken solo goal, skipping clear of an offside trap from a Sam Matthews through ball and from then onwards a new-found belief in themselves saw the Iron score three more goals to run out convincing winners.
All this too against a background of having keeper Will Puddy, injured in a collision on 23 minutes, and with no substitute keeper on the bench he bravely chose to stay on and guard his penalty box, only able to throw the ball out because he was unable to kick it.
With defender George Elokobi having to take all goal kicks and the rest of the defence forced to help out their stricken keeper all the Iron players showed fantastic character and belief in taking the game to their visitors and in the end deservedly winning.
A delighted Hayrettin said: "I'm really pleased with the boys' second half display having given them yet another half time rollicking for the first 45 minutes.
"We couldn't sub our keeper and I told them to start pressurising the other side more, pushing forward more and forcing them into mistakes at the back which they did," he explained. "Once we pulled a goal back I knew we could go on and win the game because the determination and more commitment from then onwards was there from every player compared to what we had seen in the first half."
He went on: "We are moving forward step by step and re-building this team and how it plays its football step by step and although there's a long way to go we're now on the right lines."
But one of the big turning points of the game was when Hayrettin bought on former Iron Academy winger Joe Maybanks as substitute for Sam Corne just past the hour.
The youngster immediately showed what he is capable of laying on a fine low left-wing cross for Cheek to stride on at the far post to equalise on 70 minutes and two minutes later provided Chez Isaac with his chance to send a dipping shot high into the far corner of the net with keeper Alan Julian beaten.
Hayrettin said: "He's had to wait for his chance since I came but I thought he could help change the game today and he's taken his chance.
"This lad has great potential which I have seen in our training sessions and I believe the Club has a great talent in him and we will continue to nurse him along, develop him and make the progress in the game I think he is capable of," explained Hayrettin.
The 19 year-old himself was pleased with his contribution to the cup win adding: "It's really frustrating waiting on the bench as a substitute so I was more than happy to get a chance to go and show what I can do.
"It worked out well and I know I can force myself into the starting line-up in the future," he added.
The icing on the cake for the Iron fans in the 343 crowd was right on full-time when midfielder Harry Lee fired in a hard, low free-kick from out on the right wing which beat all defenders and keeper Julian en route into the bottom of the far corner of the net.
"It was a fine comeback and we deserved the win but looking at it in a wider context it's all part of trying to build a team ethic with players doing as they are told and to show character and commitment to the way we want to move forward," added Hayrettin.
Braintree Town: Puddy; Williams, Okimo, Gayle, Elokobi; Isaac (Midson 83), Lee, Corne (Maybanks 65), Matthews; Akinola, Cheek (Barnard 90). Unused subs: Ashton, Goodship, Hall-Johnson, Cowgill. Attendance: 343. Referee: Craig Hicks.
Next up for the Iron is a trip to Dover Athletic for a Vanarama National League game on Saturday, October 22, kick off 3pm.

Renaissance continues against York
York keeper earns his side a point
It was yet another stirring second half performance by the Iron that earned new manager Hakan Hayrettin his first point at the club but he saw his side waste goal scoring chances that should have in reality brought him his first win.
As in the midweek defeat against Boreham Wood the Iron conceded an early goal, this time after only six minutes, came back strongly, missed a penalty and throughout the second dominated the game and should have won by at least three or four clear goals.
It left Hayrettin a frustrated man but at least pleased with the overall improved performance of the side and the better commitment and endeavour of every playing adding: "To be honest we should have won the game comfortably in the second half.
"It's frustrating because we played much better, created so many chances and shouldn't have had to rely on a last minute penalty to get a point," he declared. "Their keeper played a blinder and when he was beaten we had balls kicked off their goal line."
He went on: "We have shown in these past two games we have the ability and the players have the desire to go out and win games at this level.
"I had to issue a real war cry to the players at half time because had three decent chances before the break to equalise but in fairness the players responded well and we were so on top in that second period we should have won all three points," he continued.
He added: "We gave away a poor goal early, should have quickly pulled the game with the penalty but at least the players showed far more commitment to keep going right to the end to get a reward - I believe we are really making progress.
"I brought Cheeky on nine minutes after the restart and he made a lot of difference up front causing them all kinds of problems with his running with the ball and really I felt he should have had a hat-trick in this match."
Hayrettin made three changes from the midweek game bringing in Barney Williams, Ian Gayle and Sam Matthews in the starting line-up.
The Iron again had the worse possible start conceding a sloppy goal after only six minutes when Harry Lee in midfield failed to hold on to the ball which was swept out to the left wing where Williams allowed his man to come inside and lay a ball off to Simon Heslop who drilled a first time shot low past keeper Will Puddy.
Four minutes later though the Iron should have been on level terms when Simeon Akinola was brought down in the area and he hauled himself to take the spot kick which unfortunately lacked pace and was saved low down by keeper Kyle Letheren.
Moments later the visitors almost added a second but the final shot grazed the outside of an Iron upright but to their credit the home players responded and from Lee's long throws both Gayle and George Elokobi saw their goal efforts blocked.
After Letheren had pulled off two more saves he should have been beaten on 43 minutes when Oli Muldoon was give time and space from close in to score but defender Clovis Kamdjo blocked his effort only for the ball to bounce off him and it was heading toward the net until it was hacked off the line.
Whatever Hayrettin said to the players at half time, it had the desired effect because they constantly pressurised the visitors' rearguard with Cheek twice early on seeing his shot and then his rebound saved by Letheren, before Issac and Muldoon went close again and then on 68 minutes an audacious overhead shot from Akinola grazed the post.
On 75 and 78 minutes Cheek again looked likely to score only for his first effort to scrambled away off the goal line and the second he fired straight at Letheren with the goal at his mercy.
Hayrettin decided on a last throw of the dice and brought on the experienced Lee Barnard with four minutes to go and on 88 minutes when Cheek was hauled down in the area by York's Jack Higgins it was left to the calmness of Barnard to blast the ball into the net.
It was no more than the Iron deserved, at least for their vastly improved second half performance, and on reflection Hayrettin knows that they wasted enough chances to have won this game comfortably.
"It's disappointing but it's my first point on the board at the club and we are making progress and I solidly believe we will start moving up the table and away from the relegation zone which is the first priority," he added.
Braintree Town: Puddy; Williams, Okimo, Gayle, Elokobi; Lee (Hall-Johnson 70), Isaac, Muldoon (Barnard 86), Matthews; Midson (Cheek 54), Akinola. Unused subs: Ashton, Corne. Attendance: 728. Referee: David Rock.
Next up is a FA Cup fourth qualifying round tie at home to league rivals Bromley on Saturday, kick off 3pm.

Progress but Iron get caught
Iron level up, but concede on the counter
Iron put in one their better performances of the season at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium on Tuesday evening only to lose out on at least being rewarded with a deserved point because of two defensive mistakes at crucial times.
It left new manager Hakan Hayrettin disappointed with the final result but pleased with his side's overall new found commitment and determination adding: "It was a vastly improved performance over the Lincoln game and I felt we had overall more than a fair share of the game.
"But we simply have to cut out the basic, individual mistakes which has cost us both in my first games in charge," he said. "They've all been inside the six yard box and at this level of football you simply can't afford to do that because you get punished as we have and we must cut them out."
He went on: "We've no time to start feeling sorry for ourselves either but two mistakes in each of the two games has cost us dearly but in this latest game I can take lots of positives from it and we shall keep taking it step by step and we are improving."
For the second game in succession Hayrettin lost another centre-half for injury - Jack Cowgill was forced to retire with a shoulder injury on 41 minutes and who had looked comfortable in a new partnership in the heart of the defence with 30 year-old George Elokobi, signed earlier in the day on loan from Colchester United.
"I've never known anything like it - losing three centre-halves with injuries in just two games," he continued. "But at least Ian Gayle was almost fully fit to come off the bench and fill in for Cowgill who I hope will be okay for Saturday."
He went on: "Earlier we had to get another central defender in and it took all day before this game to get him in and I am grateful for the help of Colchester because we also can play him in our FA Cup game on Saturday week.
"He played a major part in our improved performance in this game because he showed experience and the determination and desire to win which rubs off on the younger players," said Hayrettin.
It was a vastly improved second half performance that should have seen the Iron at least gained a draw with Hayrettin adding: "We showed a lot of commitment, played better football and caused them problems every time we went forward."
The Iron though fell behind on 26 minutes when their static defence seem to wait too long to clear an easy ball in the box but they allowed Morgan Ferrier time to simply tap the ball into the net from close range.
Undeterred by this setback the Iron picked themselves and were unlucky not to equalise right on half time but Simeon Akinola's fine effort was stopped on the goal line by keeper Grant Smith.
The second half saw the Iron running the game for lengthy periods and early on Akinola went down in the area for what looked a certain penalty but referee Carl Brook waved the Iron appeals away.
But they were not to be denied and they equalised on 61 minutes when Olly Muldoon fought hard to win the ball in midfield, laying it out to Chez Isaac and his low right wing cross was met first time by Akinola who superbly swept the ball low into the bottom corner of the net giving keeper Smith no chance.
The Iron were now on top and they repeatedly attacked the visiting defence which began to look shaky as they cleared their lines with last-ditch tackles.
So it was much against the run of play on 73 minutes when the visitors counter attacked and broke away down the left wing where the speedy Ferrier was allowed too much time and space to run into the six yard box and slip the ball into the net when it should have been cleared by the home defence.
It was a bitter setback for the Iron but they responded by again pushing hard deep into the visitors half and a few half chances went begging with the final whistle leaving them with anything to show for their much improved performance.
Braintree Town: Puddy; Braham-Barrett, Cowgill (Gayle 41), Elokobi, Okimo; Lee, Muldoon, Isaac, Midson (Barnard 65); Akinola, Cheek. Unused subs: Matthews, Maybanks, Corne. Attendance: 553. Referee: Carl Brook.
Next up for the Iron is a home game against York City on Saturday, kick off 3pm.

Hakan brings in central defender
Elokobi joins from Colchester
Braintree Town manager Hakan Hayrettin has added 30-year old defender George Elokobi to the squad on loan from Colchester United. Elokobi moved from his native Cameroon to England at the age of 16 and has two spells with Colchester United, where he has made 56 appearances, either side of playing 85 games for Wolverhampton Wanderers and 24 for Oldham Athletic. He was signed by Wolverhampton Wanderers for 500,000 in January 2008, helping the club to promotion to the Premier League. He established himself as a regular in the first-team between 2009 and 2011, before he was loaned to Nottingham Forest for the second half of the 2011-12 season, making twelve league appearances. He was loaned out to Bristol City in September 2012, but suffered a near season ending injury on his debut when he fractured his ankle. He fell out of favour at Wolves, and at the end of the 2013-14 season he was released, joining Oldham Athletic. He spent one season with Oldham before returning to Colchester United in 2015.

Bromley at home in the FA Cup
Game set for Saturday, 15th October
Braintree Town have been drawn at home to fellow Vanarama National League side Bromley in today's FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round draw. The match will take place a week on Saturday, 15th October, with kick-off at 3pm.

Early goals cost Iron
Lincoln score early in both halves
It proved a tough baptism for new Iron boss Hakan Hayrettin who saw his side lose against one of Iron's bogey sides at the Sincil Bank Stadium on Saturday - having lost their last nine consecutive games against the Imps!
They had the worse possible start too this time conceding a poor goal after only three minutes before coming back more into the game before half time only to concede another goal seven minutes into the restart, which effectively ended Iron hopes of coming away with at least a point.
Despite the difficult task facing Hayrettin to revive Iron's fortunes he remained upbeat about turning round the situation round adding: "We knew it was going to be tough coming here and we didn't help ourselves by conceding such an early goal.
"But we came back into the game and could have equalised right on half time but then we conceded another sloppy goal so soon after the restart and that put us with such a mountain to climb," he continued. "But I know we can get better and we will be working hard to put things right starting with our home game against Boreham Wood on Tuesday."
Hayrettin's cause was not helped either by losing both central defenders with injuries within the space of 13 minutes midway through the first half.
Jon Ashton limped off on 24 minutes to be replaced by Jack Cowgill and on 37 minutes Jake Goodman picking up a pulled hamstring and also limped off to be replaced by Barney Williams.
"To lose both central defenders so quickly was obviously a blow and we had to reshuffle the side around and that obviously disrupts everything," he said. "That made it really difficult for us but we'll get over it all and push on and look forward."
He was forced to move left-back Jerome Okimo in the middle at the back to partner Cowgill with Craig Braham-Barrett slotting in his place.
But giving away a goal so early had dented hopes of a settled start for Hayrettin and the third minute goal was down to mistake by loanee keeper Will Puddy who appeared to let a low right wing shot from Nathan Arnold go under his body into the net.
It was just what the home side had wanted and for long periods of the first they were in the ascendancy without really seriously threatening the Iron goal.
The Iron's best chance of the half came right on half time when new loanee midfield Ollie Muldoon whipped a low ball in from the left across the area where Michael Cheek's first time shot on the run just brushed the outside of a post.
It would have been a fair reflection of the play at the interval had the Iron gone in on level terms but in reality giving away another poor goal on 52 minutes settled the result in the home side's favour.
It all came from a left wing corner from Terry Hawkridge with the ball floating high into the Iron area and there at the far post was the unmarked Luke Waterfall to head home.
It was a blow the Iron were to never recover and with midfielder Alex Woodyard pulling most of the strings in the middle of the park for Lincoln they frequently looked more and more likely to add to their tally.
Hayrettin replaced the tiring impressive debutant Muldoon on 72 minutes bringing on the experienced Lee Barnard in the hope of salvaging something but it changed little as the home side continued to by then control the game.
So it was hardly no surprise to the faithfully 66 Iron fans in the crowd of 3,554 when the home side grabbed a third goal a minute from time.
It came from a simple free-kick down the right from Arnold who, with the Iron defenders not concentrating, slipped the ball through to substitute Jack Muldoon who sent in a superb first time shot high into the Iron net from an acute angle that gave Puddy no chance.
On reflection, the final scoreline was somewhat flattering to them in a game that had the Iron not conceded to poor goals early in each half and lost two central defenders in one go they may well have returned home with at least a point.
Braintree Town: Puddy; Braham-Barrett, Ashton (Cowgill 24), Goodman (Williams 37), Okimo; Lee, Isaac, Muldoon (Barnard 72), Midson; Akinola, Cheek. Unused subs: Goodship, Corne. Referee: Steve Rushton.
Next up for the Iron is a home game against Boreham Wood on Tuesday, kick off 7.45pm.

Hakan adds to squad
midfielder joins from Charlton
New Iron manager Hakan Hayrettin has made his first signing, bringing in Oliver Muldoon on loan from Sky Bet League One side Charlton Athletic. The 22-year-old spent the latter part of last season with Dagenham & Redbridge, playing 19 times in League Two. His Daggers debut came away at Everton in the FA Cup and, earlier in 2015/16, he had made his Charlton bow by coming off the bench at Peterborough United in the Capital One Cup. Prior to that, Muldoon had earned his first taste of senior football on loan at Gillingham in March 2015.

Lincoln City Preview
Nine defeats in a row for Iron
Next for Braintree is a trip up the A1 and A46 to visit Lincoln City for a Vanarama National League fixture, writes Gareth Davies. Rarely a happy hunting ground for Iron, we have lost our last nine games against the Sincil Bank club - eight in the league and one in the FA Trophy!
Recent results for both sides have been mixed. While Lincoln have won two of their last five games in the Vanarama National League, Braintree have been successful just the once.
Last Saturday Iron went down 1-0 at home to second-placed Forest Green Rovers, extending a poor start to the season that saw Jamie Day leave the Club and replaced by Hakan Hayrettin.
Despite that, Braintree supporters will be encouraged by the form of the influential Chez Isaac. The former Watford midfielder signed for Braintree in 2012 and has become a leader for the younger players in the squad. Summer signing Jerome Okimo has also impressed over the last couple of games with several key tackles and has shown composure on and off the ball. But Iron will be without experienced 'keeper Sam Beasant, who picked up a broken finger during the Chester match - so loanee Will Puddy looks set to make his second appearance on Saturday.
While Iron met Forest Green Rovers, Lincoln went down 2-0 at Dover, having lost their previous match 2-1 at home to Barrow last Saturday week.
Lincoln players to watch out for will be former-Iron Alex Woodyard, influential in midfield, and striker Matt Rhead, who is Lincoln's top goal scorer this season, netting six in there first 12 games. Iron fans may also see Macauley Bonne, currently on loan from Colchester United.
The bookmakers don't offer much hope for the travelling faithful - Lincoln City are 1/2 odds-on to beat struggling Braintree, who are rated as rank-outsiders at 5/1 for Saturday's match with William Hill!
Travelling details are as follows:
Sincil Bank Stadium, Lincoln LN5 8LD
Tel: 01522 880011
Next up at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium is this coming Tuesday, 4th October, when Iron are at home to Borehamwood in another Vanarama National League fixture, with kick-off at 7.45pm.

Hakan Hayrettin takes over
"Let's go to work!"
Braintree Town have appointed Hakan Hayrettin as their new first team manager. After a successful playing career in both the Football League and in senior non-League football, Hakan managed for ten years at Waltham Forest, Thurrock and Grays Athletic.
In the summer of 2013 he was invited to join John Still at Luton Town and was part of the successful management team that secured the Conference title and promotion back to the Football League in 2014 (despite losing 3-2 at home to Braintree Town in front of 10,000 at Kenilworth Road!) He remained at Luton in the Football League until leaving with John Still last December.
He met with the Braintree players this evening and will take training this week before Saturday's trip to Lincoln City.
Hakan was delighted to join the Club: "I won't promise miracles, but we'll all be working very hard to turn our fortunes around and that started tonight. As I said to the lads earlier: Let's go to work!"

Jamie Day leaves Braintree
"He's given it everything!"
First team manager Jamie Day has left the Club by mutual agreement. Jamie joined Braintree Town in difficult circumstances during the summer and over-saw the re-building of the first team squad. However, results have not been as good as both the Club and Jamie would have hoped, with just two wins from the first twelve games of the season. The Club's Board met on Saturday evening and decided that it was time for a change and Chairman Lee Harding spoke with Jamie on Sunday morning and reached an agreement.
Harding was disappointed: "It's a real shame for both the Club and Jamie, because he's given the job everything he can. Over the past few months we've spoken almost daily and I know how hard Jamie has worked to bring in players to make us competitive. But we're all in the results business and the league table does not lie. The view of the Board was that change now allows sufficient time for fresh ideas and a fresh approach to turn our season around. We intend to move quickly and hope to have a new manager in place as soon as possible."
As ever, more news when we have it!

Spot kick miss costs Iron
Forest Green hold on to first half lead
A penalty miss from midfielder Chez Isaac seventeen minutes from the end proved a costly mistake for the Iron as they went down to another one goal defeat at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium on Saturday.
Isaac had won the spot kick himself when he was hauled down in the area on his way through to goal but his low spot shot was saved by visiting keeper Sam Russell and with it when the chance of a home point for the Iron.
It left manager Jamie Day again frustrated by his players not taking their goal scoring chances in the second half, exactly a replica of the previous Saturday's 1-0 defeat at Chester where the Iron dominated the second period.
"It's disappointing to have not picked up at least a point because I felt in the second half we played much better, were stronger of the two sides and created chances we should have taken," he said. "Had we scored the penalty we had all the momentum going forward at that stage and again we worked hard to create further chances but simply couldn't finish them off."
Day, who was forced to give a debut to on-loan keeper Will Puddy from Bristol Rovers replacing the injured Sam Beasant, went on: "We set our stall out from the off to contain them and frustrate their strong attack which we did excellently until we conceded a poor goal on 38 minutes.
"That was disappointing too because the players had done the job required in the first half to contain them and I was hoping to be on level terms at half time," he explained. "They are obviously good team with far more financial resources than we have but out players were up for it and worked their socks off."
He added: "We know we have got to start picking up points and we will because the recent performances have been so much better despite missing key players with injuries."
It was almost one-way traffic for the visitors in the first half as they dominated the game with midfielder Liam Noble literally running the game and with the Iron stringing five across the middle of the park it left Michael Cheek up front as the sole striker.
The visitors broke the deadlock on 38 minutes when former Barnet striker Keanu Marsh-Brown was given time and room to fire a low shot into the bottom left-hand corner of the Iron net.
Keeper Puddy said he was disappointed at conceding the goal but his vision was blocked by two players adding: "As a result I saw it so late that I couldn't get down quick enough to parry it.
"But I think we played much better in the second half, defended better and we should have taken something from the game," he added.
After such a poor first half and then a severe talking to by Day during the interval the Iron came out in a more attacking mode with players showing more aggression and commitment than they had in the first period.
The impressive loanee midfielder Sam Matthews sent an early curling shot just over the bar and twice Simeon Akinola, who caused problems for the visiting rearguard whenever he had the ball, came close to grabbing an equaliser.
Shortly before the Iron were awarded their penalty it was Cheek who forced a great save from Russell and seconds later Matthews again, Isaac and then again Akinola all created half chances with the visitors' defence put under severe pressure.
Even when the Iron failed from the penalty spot they still kept forcing the visitors into making mistakes and home fans were just hoping for a slice of luck to see their side equalise.
But despite all the huffing and puffing the equaliser never came and the Iron were left to rue not only the penalty miss but several other good chances in the second half.
Braintree Town: Puddy; Braham-Barrett, Okimo, Goodman, Cowgill; Lee, Matthews (Goodship 73), Isaac, Corne; Cheek, Akinola. Unused subs: Gayle, Williams, Barnard, Maybanks. Attendance: 621. Referee: Dean Treleaven
Next up for the Iron is an away trip to Lincoln City this coming Saturday, 1st October.

Day adds 'keeper on loan
Puddy joins from Bristol Rovers
Braintree Town Manager Jamie Day has added Bristol Rovers goalkeeper Will Puddy on loan prior to tomorrow's Vanarama National League fixture at home to Forest Green Rovers. The 28 year old custodian was part of Bristol Rovers 2015 Conference winning side and has made nineteen appearances for the League One side.

Iron firing blanks again
Plenty of possession, but no goals
Iron manager Jamie Day was again left a bitterly disappointed man after seeing his side lose again despite having created goal scoring chances that were wasted whilst dominating much of the second half at Chester on Saturday.
"We simply have to be more ruthless in front of goal because we are creating chances but simply not taking them," he declared. "Whilst we looked stronger at the back we again gave away a sloppy goal and in the end paid the price."
He went on: "We had a shaky first 20 minutes when players were trying to find themselves and it was perhaps because of the long journey up to the game but again that's no real excuse.
"Once we had conceded such a poor goal on the quarter hour we began to work better together and again created chances and in the second half we dominated and I felt they weren't really in the game," he continued. "But we cannot seem to score and we have to put that right quickly and also be more consistent in our overall play for the whole 90 minutes.
"We should have taken at least a point from the game and there were positives we can take moving forward but we have to start picking up points when we can, like in this kind of game," Day said. "We will working on things this week because we have two really tough games coming up, against Forest Green Rovers and Lincoln City, and I want to put right some of the things we are not doing so at the moment - we must get points on the board now."
The one bright spot for Day was the debut of on loan central defender Jack Cowgill from Barnsley who came in at the back because of an injury to Jake Goodman and a one match suspension for Ian Gayle and had an outstanding game.
"I had been to watch him play earlier in the week for Barnsley and was impressed with what I saw and today he didn't disappoint and I think he will be a big asset to the side during his month's stay," he added.
The Iron started the game well with another loanee - Brandon Goodship from Bournemouth - forcing a fantastic one-handed save by home keeper Liam Roberts who managed to tip his first time shot on the turn over the bar.
Two minutes later it was Simeon Akinola who almost scored when he jinked his way inside from the right wing only to see his low, left-foot curling shot hit the foot of the far post before being cleared.
But two minutes later the Iron were behind when they gave away a terrible goal when the ball should have been cleared.
It stemmed from a high left wing corner from Elliott Durrell which Iron keeper Sam Beasant should have dealt better with and punched the ball clear but he came and missed it and in the ensuing goalmouth melee the ball dropped kindly straight at the feet of Sam Hughes who stabbed it into the net.
It was a body blow to the Iron and for a brief spell they were on the backfoot and to the credit of Beasant he pulled off a fine save at the expense of a corner shortly afterwards and twice later in the second he was alert enough to deny the home side a possible second goal.
The Iron cause had not been helped either by the loss of the impressive young Sam Matthews two minutes before the home side scored after he had crudely been elbowed in the mouth by a home defender, forcing him to be substituted.
Unfortunately referee Ryan Johnson failed to take any action over the offence leaving Matthews to go off to see the home club doctor and receive three stitches in a mouth wound.
The second half was overall a better one than the first for the Iron with the players working hard and trying to cause a few problems for the home defence which they did but again their failure in front of goal was to cost them dear.
Twice Akinola saw his shots charged down, Chez Isaac and Michael Cheek just missed their timings with that final delivery while both Goodship and Craig Braham-Barratt saw their efforts go wide of the target.
The longer the game went on the more likely the Iron seemed as though they would at least grab an equaliser but in the end they ran out of time leaving it a frustrating afternoon for Day and the loyal band of supporters who had made the long trek up north.
"We've got work to do in the week ready for the visit of Forest Green Rovers on Saturday and I do feel we are getting things right," added Day who will have both the suspended Gayle and injured Goodman back for that game while Joe Midson says he is prepared to have pain-killing injections to get him back into contention too. Braintree Town: Beasant; Okimo, Ashton, Cowgill, Braham-Barratt; Matthews (Barnard 14), Isaac, Corne, Goodship; Cheek (Maybanks 78), Akinola. Unused subs were Williams, Lee, Strizovic. Attendance: 1,590.

Day strengthens Iron defence
Barnsley centre-half joins on loan
Braintree Town manager Jamie Day has strengthened his defensive options prior to Saturday's Vanarama National League trip to Chester with the loan signing of 19 year old centre half Jack Cowgill from Sky Bet Championship side Barnsley. Cowgill began his career with the Yorkshire club, progressing through the club's academy and signed a professional contract in August 2014. He made his Football League debut on 13 December 2014 in a 3-1 defeat against Walsall and has played two games for the Oakwell first team to date.

Isaac brace keeps Iron in touch
Late goal in each half secure three points
Braintree Town made the short journey around the M25 to visit Sutton United on Tuesday evening and came home with three points following a 2-1 victory. The home side looked the better of the two sides early on and took the lead on 35 minutes when Kevin Amankwaah was fouled on the edge of the 18 yard box, but earned his side a penalty which was converted by Nicky Bailey.
Iron were level just before the break when Chez Isaac levelled from the spot after Michael Cheek was denied a clear goal-scoring opportunity in the home penalty area.
After the break Iron had arguably the better of the exchanges with Sim Akinola best placed to score before Isaac added his second late into time added on.
On the break, the ball was swept wide to Chez who took a touch before rifling his effort for 25-yards into the far right corner.
The three points keeps Braintree just a point adrift of twentieth place. Next up for Iron is another trip, this time to Chester, next Saturday, 17th September with kick-off at 3pm.

Early hope fades against Gateshead
Cheeky gets us back into the game but -
Iron lost their second successive home Vanarama National League match on Saturday, going down by four goals to one to visitors Gateshead. Braintree had arguably the better of the early exchanges and had a reasonable shout of a penalty, but fell behind mid-way through the first half when Reece Styche chased down Pat McLaughlin's pass before steering his shot past the exposed Sam Beasant.
Styche added a second seven minutes after the re-start when he tucked Mitch Brundle's pass past Beasant. Michael Cheek pulled a goal back for Braintree on 57 minutes when he reacted quickly to score after Jake Goodman's attempt had hit the woodwork. But hopes of securing a point faded when McLaughlin added Gateshead's third on 70 minutes and ended when Wes York scored the visitors fourth with eight minutes remaining.
After the game Iron Manager Jamie Day was disappointed: "I thought we started well enough, but too many defensive errors have cost us today. We got back into the game at 2-1, but the nature of the third and fourth goals have killed it for us. All of the lads have had a fair chance now and it is obvious that more changes will have to be made in the weeks ahead."
Next up for Braintree is a trip to Sutton United this coming Tuesday evening, 13th September, with kick-off at 7.45pm

Jamie Butler released
Iron keeper moves on
Braintree Town Manager Jamie Day has agreed with goalkeeper Jamie Butler for his contract with the Club to be terminated and for him to move on to another club. Jamie Butler made six first team appearances and kept two clean sheets during his time with the Iron. All at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium wish him well for the future.

A clean sheet and a point
Iron share goal-less draw in the Yorkshire rain
Iron made the long journey up the A1 to visit a rain-sodden Guiseley on Saturday and came home with a point from a dour goal-less draw. With debutant keeper Sam Beasant in for Jamie Butler and loanee striker Brandon Goodship in for the injured Michael Cheek, Iron struggled to come to terms with a hard-working home side still in search of their first points of the season during the first half.
The best chance of the opening 45 minutes came as the interval approached. Guiseley's Jordan Preston tried his luck with a low drive from the right which new Braintree keeper Beasant did well to steer onto his upright and away to safety.
After the break Iron had more of the possession, but chances were few and far between, with both sides set on retaining their clean sheet. Probably the best effort during the second half came late on to Chez Isaac who saw his effort dip just wide of the target.
After the game Iron boss Jamie Day was pragmatic: "It was difficult in the rain and not a great game. But we've kept a clean sheet and that's something for us to build on."

Day adds goalkeeper
Former Cambridge custodian joins Iron
Iron manager Jamie Day has continued his adjustments to the first team squad by bringing in last season's Cambridge United goalkeeper Sam Beasant. The 28 year old 'keeper started his career in Cyprus before spells at Maidenhead United, Billericay Town and Woking, where he played 32 games during 2013-14. The summer of 2014 saw the 6'5" custodian move to Football League side Stevenage, playing 11 games, before signing a one-year deal last summer at Cambridge United where he made 19 appearances.

Day brings in Premier League duo
Matthews & Goodship join on long-term loan
Braintree Town have signed 19-year old midfielder Sam Matthews and 22-year old Brandon Goodship on long-term loan from FA Premier Leaguers AFC Bournemouth.

Iron welcome new sponsors
IronmongeryDirect join the family
Braintree Town are pleased to unveil new Stadium and Shirt Sponsors.
After a summer of ifs and buts from our previous sponsors, we had an opportunity to bring another company into the family at Cressing Road and early negotiations went exceptionally went well. Following the previous sponsors confirming that they would be pulling out of the three season agreement that they had signed after just one season, we are delighted to welcome and introduce to you our friends and the staff from IronmongeryDirect.
IronmongeryDirect are the UK's largest specialist ironmongery supplier, supplying architectural ironmongery to builders, joiners and shop fitters for over 40 years. They have over 15,500 quality products in stock and ready for next day delivery, all of which have low locked down prices which are reviewed regularly to guarantee exceptional value for money.
Their huge range includes door furniture, door handles, hinges, cabinet hardware, door closers and much more. They also offer a wide selection of popular finishes such as brass, chrome, pewter and stainless steel, ensuring that they will have the item of ironmongery you are looking for to complete any job. For added convenience they offer free 30 day returns on all purchases, and trade customers can also open a 60-day interest free trade account.
We have agreed a partnership initially spanning over a two-year period, with options to work on other projects during that time, and also to restart planning early in 2018 to start working towards to where the partnership goes next.
This is very much a club sponsorship which will see our Academy and our Reserve sides all wearing the same kit as our First Team squad both home and away, and on top of that IronmongeryDirect have also sponsored the Community Iron Apprenticeship Program which will allow former students to go out into the Braintree and Witham District's coaching in local schools and clubs to give them a pathway into Braintree Town Football Club.
We would like to thank the Staff, Managers, and Directors of IronmongeryDirect, we are delighted to have you on board and we are very much looking to what this partnership will bring, thanks again for the numbers of your staff that turned up on Saturday in uniform to fill the stands with colour and great brand awareness.
We would also like to thank at this stage all our new and existing sponsors, player, program and pitch side, our club needs you all and if any of you would be interested in working with us in any way please feel free to give Mark Sansom a call and we can discuss the opportunities we have available.

Iron display lacks basics
Day complains about passion and desire
Iron's defensive frailties were again exposed and led to their fourth defeat of the season at the IronmongeryDirect Stadium at Cressing Road on Bank Holiday Monday and there were no complaints over the result at the end from a disappointed manager Jamie Day.
He kept his players locked in the dressing room after the final whistle to let them know what he thought of most of the team in one of the worse Iron performance for a long time.
In their first five seasons at national level the backbone of the Iron's success has been a strong and well drilled defence but that's something Day knows he now needs to work on and he says he won't hesitate to bring new faces in to help.
In this game having conceded a goal through sloppy defending midway through the first half they pulled themselves together and scored a well taken equaliser nine minute later only to then go and give the visitors the lead again with another goal through schoolboy defending three minutes later.
Iron did improve a little after the interval but never really looked like breaking a stout visiting rearguard down before they gave away another goal 15 minutes from time when the visitors' Luke Young strode through, splitting wide open the Iron defence to score a third goal and with it a deserved victory.
A frustrated Day said afterwards: "I've told them a few home truths and the first is that you have to have passion and desire to win a football match and we didn't have that today from far too many players.
"I've made it clear that I will bring in new players because we can't have that and you can't carry players," he continued. "You do that against teams at this level and you get punished which is what happened today."
He went on: "Some of them seem to not want to get stuck in and tackle and also take some responsibility. Half the squad today didn't do that and reaching the levels they are capable of."
With two strikers Michael Cheek and Jack Midson missing through injury, Day was forced to leave Lee Barnard up front on his own with support coming from a four strong midfield but it simply didn't happen and Barnard was left to have a frustrating afternoon with little or not help so it was no surprise that the Iron lacked a cutting edge in front of goal.
"I am really disappointed at the overall team performance barring literally one or two individuals and I won't accept it, and neither will supporters, watching players simply going through the motions," he continued. "It doesn't matter what formation you play and you can try and change as we did today but if you don't have the boys who want to run around and get stuck in and tackle it doesn't matter."
He added: "Unless you have 11 players out there who want to play for the shirt and for me and are willing to put tackles in, wanting to get in the box to scored goals and block shots went needed you aren't going to win any games."
Clearly riled by certain individual performances on the day the manager has made it clear he won't put up with it and Iron fans can expect some changes to be made in the coming days.
"There was no heart or desire there from some and I won't put up with it because you have to be prepared to bust a gut and fight for every ball and some didn't want to," he added. "Every player has to take responsibility but today quite a few failed to do so and I am really disappointed with some individuals."
In reality the visitors are not by quite a way a strong side in the league but the Iron's display made them look like world beaters at time and it was not surprise when they took the lead on 21 minutes when Jamie Reid was allowed so much time and space to score with a low shot into the Iron net.
Just 11 minutes later the Iron gave themselves a lifeline when good work by Simeon Akinola saw the ball chipped to the far post where Craig Braham-Barrett headed home.
But the Iron's joy was short-lived when three minutes later the defence should have cleared the ball and keeper Jamie Butler then flapped at the ball when he should have been stronger and punched it well away.
But the ball ran kindly to Giancarlo Gakkifuoco who somehow managed to squeeze the ball through a static cluster of players in Iron's backline to find the net.
To their credit after the interval, Iron came back more into the game but again there was no cutting edge in attack and long, high hopeful balls up from the Iron defence were meat and drink to the physically strong and tall visiting defence.
The game was effectively settled 15 minutes from time when again poor defending from Iron allowed Young to stroll through and pick his spot to beat the stranded Butler for their third goal.
Overall there can be no complaints from the Iron camp because the visitors deserved their win and three points and their players showed far greater determination and commitment to the cause over the 90 minutes than the Iron players.
Day will need the coming week to sort matters out before the side make the trip to Leeds on Saturday to take on basement side Guiseley where three points for the Iron will be so crucial.
Braintree Town: Butler; Williams, Okimo, Gayle (Goodman 51), Ashton; Corne, Isaac, Lee (Gordon 72), Braham-Barrett (Maybanks 88); Barnard. Unused subs: Fagan, Strizovic. Attendance: 892. Referee: Carl Brook.

Day disappointed at Barrow
Iron see lead slip away
Iron are still searching for their first away win of the season after giving away two goals allowing their hosts to come from behind to snatch all three points with the winning goal arriving just three minutes from the end at the Furness Building Society Stadium on Saturday.
It left manager Jamie Day bitterly disappointed from a game he thought they could have won adding: "We should have taken at least a point from the game and had we taken the clear chances we had in either half we would have won and deservedly so.
"I thought we were well in control for long periods in the game and didn't really feel threatened but we switched off twice and paid the penalty in allowing them to score each time and you can't afford to do that at this level," he continued. "To concede a winning goal so late in the game is really disappointing and after the boys had put in a good shift."
Day went on: "We knew they used a long throw a lot but then for that winning goal we didn't clear our lines properly from it and were punished because we didn't react after the initial shot.
"Having taken the lead in the first half, played well and felt in control we again conceded a poor equaliser late in the first half but even then in the second half I was confident that we would get something from the game," he continued. "We had to dig in at times but we expected that and overall we defended well throughout the game but just switched off twice at crucial times and we paid for it."
He added: "I don't think they once opened us up from open play and we had some decent chances but on reflection we didn't really work their keeper hard enough either. It was a good, solid performance but we have to learn to take our chances when we get them and had we in this game we would be making the long journey back with all three points and smiles on all the faces of the players."
It was the experienced Jack Midson who missed a decent chance in the first half and two easier opportunities to score in the second half as the Iron more than held their own against a side unbeaten at home this season.
They had taken the lead on 21 minutes when Midson was fouled in the area and Chez Isaac coolly slotted home the resultant spot kick and for most of the half the Iron were the better side before they conceded the equaliser on 42 minutes much against the run of play.
It came from a long throw into the Iron area where the ball was headed over keeper Jamie Butler by Byron Harrison and came back off the underside of the Iron bar and with defenders hesitating Richard Bennett simply stabbed the ball home.
It was a bad time for the Iron to give away and an equaliser but to their credit they came out strongly in the second and again created chances while up at the other end when the home side did threaten young keeper Butler pulled off two fine saves to keep his side in the game.
The Iron continued to push forward for that crucial winning goal and twice Midson wasted chances to have scored before again a moment's lack of concentration at the back, from another long throw-in, saw them concede a goal to their hosts.
A lapse in the Iron defence allowed Alex-Ray Harvey to shoot and when his effort came back off the foot of a post it was left to the unmarked Harrison to tap the ball into the net for the winning goal.
It was a bitter blow to the Iron who had over the 90 minutes done more than enough to have at least come away with a point and had they taken their chances they could have had all three points.
Iron's cause was not help by the enforced early second half substitution of Michael Cheek with a calf injury that makes him doubtful for Bank Holiday Monday's home game against Torquay.
"We'll have to see how it goes but he must a big doubt for that game while injuries to both Chez Isaac (knee) and Simeon Akinola (ankle) will make them doubtful too," said Day. "But we will be ready to go and even more determined to make it another home win."
Braintree Town: Butler; Williams, Okimo, Ashton, Goodman; Corne, Isaac, Lee, Akinola; Cheek (Braham-Barrett 48), Midson. Unused subs: Gayle, Fagan, Gordon. Attendance: 966.
Next game for the Iron is on Bank Holiday Monday at home to Torquay Utd with a 3pm kick off.

Iron off & running
Goodman & Akinola secure 2-0 win
Iron picked up their first league win of the new season with a competent and workmanlike performance against an in-form Aldershot side at the Cressing Road Stadium on Saturday.
A fine headed goal by defender Jake Goodman from an accurate Harry Lee corner after only eight minutes gave the Iron the best possible start and although the visitors pressurised the home defence in the early part of the second half, it was a fine individual goal by Simeon Akinola on 76 minutes that sealed the points.
With his first win as Iron boss Jamie Day was delighted at the way his side worked hard and showed more consistency than in any previous games so far this season adding: "Everyone put a good shift in and I emphasised to the players before the game not to concede an early goal.
"I wanted to try and keep us on the front foot from the off and we did that which helped us to a crucial early goal with Jake's brilliant header," he continued. "We knew it was going to be tough because they are a good side and they did come at us strongly at times but I thought defensively we were strong and coped with the danger.
"Obviously a win gives all the players confidence which has been a bit missing so far but we're up and running although there's still a lot of work to do in re-building this side," he went on.
Day made four changes from the midweek Maidstone defeat with keeper Jamie Butler back in goal after his suspension, Goodman coming into central defence for the suspended Jon Ashton and Michael Cheek starting up front and in midfield Chez Isaac returned from injury after missing the last three games.
It was Isaac's return that proved the most productive as he gave the midfield more authority for the Iron than in recent games and linked up well with newcomer Harry Lee.
"Chez is experienced at this level and I think working alongside Harry gave us a better midfield performance and again something for us to work on for our next game," said Day.
Young Butler also made an improved return in goal pulling off two crucial saves, one in the first half from Callum Reynolds and one from Matt McClure in the second half when the visitors looked more of a threat.
"He did well for us throughout the game and I know for him keeping a clean sheet will again do his confidence so much," said Day.
Certainly the Iron survived odd periods of pressure from the visitors who often let themselves down when they reach the Iron area but full marks to the home defence in which Goodman and Ian Gayle were outstanding.
Goodman said: "I've known and played with Ian a long time so I think we worked well together quite easily."
On his early goal he said: "I like to come up from the back and score goals when I can and I had told Harry where to put the ball over from corners and he did just that and I was able to score my second goal for the club.
"I felt we were always in control even though we sat back a bit in the early part of the second half and invited them on us but we coped well and I think this win will make all the difference with the team's confidence," said Goodman. "You have to be dogged at times and I think at times in this game we did just that and everyone was determined to get into the winning habit."
It was certainly an overall much improved performance from the Iron and they only let themselves occasionally with some sloppy play, like not making accurate passes to one another.
"Again that's something we are working on and players are now beginning to understand how each of them play and there was certainly more cohesion in the side in this game," added Day.
With the Iron 1-0 up the interval they badly needed that vital second goal to give them some breathing space but home fans had to wait until the 76th minute before it came and what a superbly taken one it was by Akinola.
The Iron counter-attacked strongly and the ball was swept out to Cheek just over the half way line on the right wing and he sprinted clear before delivering a pin-point pass to the on-rushing Akinola who half volleyed home a first time shot into the far corner of the visitors' net giving keeper Mark Smith no chance. The initial gap in midfield had been provided by the experienced Lee Barnard who pulled his marker away allowing Cheek a free run.
The goal effectively ended any further real threat from the visitors and the Iron shut up shop with their two-goal lead to run out deserved winners.
Braintree Town: Butler; Williams, Okimo, Gayle, Goodman; Midson (Corne 72), Isaac (Gordon 72), Lee, Akinola (Braham-Barrett 84); Cheek, Barnard. Unused subs: Fagan, Maybanks. Attendance: 677. Referee: Dean Treleaven.
Next up for the Iron is the long trip this Saturday to Barrow with the players and manager journeying up Friday to stay overnight and fresh for the game kicking off at 3pm.

Defeat at Maidstone
Captain's dismissal compounds a difficult evening
Iron are still searching for their first win of the season after this defeat on their first ever visit to the Gallagher Stadium on Tuesday evening and, for the second game in succession, they ended with ten men on the field.
Going behind after only four minutes from a close range shot by Bobby-Joe Taylor meant the Iron had their backs to the wall from the start and this was further exacerbate on the half hour when the same player added a controversial second goal despite clearly being in an offside position before scoring.
After weathering the early pressure from a rampant home side, urged on by a 2.242 crowd, the Iron did come into the game more and should have had a penalty 15 minutes from time when Ian Gayle was unceremoniously hauled down in the home penalty area.
The one bright spot was the impressive sole Iron goal on 93 minutes from young substitute Joe Maybanks who drove the ball low into the home net from just inside the area.
The black spot though was the 80th minute sending off by referee Chris O'Donnell of Iron skipper Jon Ashton who was caught out with a long through ball from the home defence forcing him to haul down Alex Fisher to prevent a goal scoring opportunity.
Iron manager Jamie Day though remained upbeat at the end although admitted the side still had a lot of basic groundwork to do to become an effective cohesive unit and he was disappointed at their overall performance.
"We conceded an early goal that naturally put us on the back foot as they came out of the blocks strongly and caught us unaware," he said. "We gradually managed to get ourselves back in the game and then we concede an offside goal that should clearly not have been allowed.
"But things like that happen in football and you need a little bit of luck along the way and that was in short supply this evening," he continued. "I know it will come right and obviously a win will give so much confidence to all the players."
Day admitted he had no qualms about Ashton's sending off "because he was caught out with one ball over the top and the player was too quickly on to the ball."
He added: "It means our captain will now be suspended but I have Jake Goodman as a ready made stand-in for this Saturday's home game against Aldershot and hopefully too midfielder Chez Isaac should be fit to resume."
Day had already been forced into finding a suitable stand-in goalkeeper for this game after Jamie Butler's sending off on Saturday and 22 year-old Ross Fitzsimmons did well after a shaky start pulling off some fine saves in the second half.
Day added: "It's early days and I'm not panicking because we have to build a completely new side and it takes time for players at this level to adjust to one another and we'll dust ourselves down, train hard on Thursday and work a few more things out and be ready for Saturday.
One delightful face at the end of the game was understandably Maybanks who scored his first senior competitive goal for the club and added: "I've been itching to get off the bench and on the field of play to have a go and show what I can do.
"I was pleased with my goal although it was disappointing to lose the game after we came back well from going two goals down," he added.
Although the home side, a clearly well-knitted unit having come up together through last season's promotion, showed plenty of pace and cohesion going forward when the Iron did put pressure on the back four it caused them all kinds of problems.
In what was a high tempo game with end to end football and a more even second half it was the Iron who almost equalised on 11 minutes when a Harry Lee free-kick was frantically snatched at the last moment by home keeper Lee Worgan.
From another Iron corner - they had 12 corners to United's five all evening - it was Lee's cross that caused the home defence jitters with the ball finally kissing the angle of the right hand post.
Lee Barnard than went close with a fine header and just before the interval Simeon Akinola twice had goal efforts cleared away by the home defence.
The second half saw the Iron come more into the game and twice again Akinola went close before on the hour Jack Midson created a good opening only to see his final shot charged down by a defender with keeper Worgan nowhere to be seen.
Despite Ashton's sending off the Iron kept pressing for a goal and it finally came in stoppage time from young Maybanks but it was a case of too little too late.
Had the home's side controversial second goal been disallowed, which it should have been, and the second half blatant foul on Gayle resulted in a penalty then the outcome could well have been different.
Braintree Town: Fitzsimmons; Williams, Okimo, Gayle, Ashton; Midson, Corne, Lee, Gordon (Maybanks 74); Barnard (Cheek 68), Akinola. Unused subs: Fagan, Goodman, Rees.
The Iron are at home to Aldershot Town on Saturday, kick off 3pm.

Day brings in keeper
Fitzsimons joins from Bolton
Braintree Town Manager Jamie Day has moved quickly to fill the goalkeeping spot following Jamie Butler's suspension. Joining the club is 22-year old goalkeeper Ross Fitzsimons, who started his career as a youngster at Crystal Palace before moving on to Bolton Wanderers two years ago. Ross also spent time last season on loan at Bishop's Stortford and will be eligible to play tomorrow evening at Maidstone United.

Iron second best to Silkmen
Day looking for response on Tuesday
Iron can have no complaints at losing their first game of the new season when one of their bogey sides - Macclesfield - again proved too strong with a more workmanlike performance from a well organised side with pace and organisation.
The game was effectively over by half time because the visitors had controlled much of the first 45 minutes and on chances alone could have been three or four goals ahead as the Iron floundered with few taking responsibility, particularly in midfield, and little apparent cohesion and poor passing throughout the side.
Despite going two goals down by the interval, Iron did improved slightly in the second half, helped by the double 56th substitution of Zach Fagan and Michael Cheek for debutants Sam Corne and Rohdell Gordon, but the visitors grabbed a superbly taken third goal on 73rd minute to win comfortably.
To their credit the Iron did rally better late on and Lee Barnard netted an 81st minute penalty after defender Mitchell Hancox had handled but it was no more than a consolation goal and the visitors deserved their victory.
It left Iron manager Jamie Day upset at his side's overall performance, particularly in the first half when he admitted they were outplayed adding: "We were second best, no excuses and we gave away two very poor goals and they could have a couple more goals ahead.
"Our work-rate was poor and so was our passing and we were second best in the first half," he declared. "It was simply not good enough and it has to be sorted out."
He went on: "Our midfield was poor and we weren't really aggressive enough throughout the side certainly in that first half and I know we did noticeably improve in the second half by then the game for us had gone.
"We have to learn from it and learn quickly and look forward to a complete improvement across the whole team on Tuesday when we go to Maidstone," he continued.
For that game the Iron boss will be looking to bring in a goalkeeper on emergency loan because regular custodian Jamie Butler was sent off in the third minute of added time at the end for bringing down a Macclesfield player having rushed almost to the half way line to try and stop a visitors' attack.
"He does play a high line and is always coming out of his goal to clear his lines, much like an additional sweeper at the back, but he was too far out this time and brought their player down so it was a straight red," said Day.
With no reserve keeper on the Iron bench and the other keeper Sam Cowler injured, it meant a couple of minutes in goal for newcomer Corne but by then the game was lost for the home side.
Day added: "We have to learn from this game, dust ourselves down and show more determination all round, better cohesion and organisation and make sure we bounce back on Tuesday."
The Iron though were certainly second best for most of the game and it showed in the body language of some of the players after the side went two goals down and there was really no 'general' in what was a fairly non-existent midfield all afternoon, while the visitors had Danny Whitaker and Danny Rowe who excelled all over the park and really controlled the game from start to finish.
It was Rowe who opened the scoring on 10 minutes when a bad mistake by Iron full-back Jerome Okimo allowed him time and space to cut inside from the right wing and fire home a low shot beyond the reach of Butler.
The visitors continued to dominate the game and could have at least a couple of more goals before they finally added a second on 31 minutes when Chris Holroyd was able to sneak in front of the home side's rearguard and slot the quick ball in from the left wing over the stranded Butler from close range.
The Iron did improve in the second half when the double substitution was made and twice Simeon Akinola and Barnard went close while Jack Midson, moved into attack replacing Cheek, also twice came close to possibly scoring.
But it always seemed the visitors had that extra yard of pace and were far more assured in their passing to one another so it was no surprise when they added a third on 73 minutes when Jack Sampson was simply allowed to run free from the halfway line before looking up and placing a perfect lob shot over Butler into the top of the Iron net.
Even very late on when the visitors were reduced to 10 men with Hancox's second yellow card for a foul the Iron briefly rallied but in the dying moments any hope for a great, late escaped disappeared with Butler's foul leaving referee Anthony Serrano with no alternative but to show the youngster a straight red card.
Day is confident his side will pick themselves up for the next game away to Maidstone United on Tuesday, kick off 7.45pm before returning home for another league game on Saturday against Aldershot, kick off 3pm. Braintree: Butler; Williams, Okimo, Gayle, Ashton; Midson, Fagan (Corne 56), Lee, Akinola; Cheek (Gordon 56), Barnard. Unused subs: Maybanks, Rees, Goodman. Attendance 703. Referee: Anthony Serrano.

Day adds to Iron squad
Midfielder switches to Cressing Road
Braintree Town Manager Jamie Day has continued to bolster his first team squad with the addition of Sam Corne from Welling United. The former Cambridge United midfielder, who will be twenty in November, was included in the England C squad last September and joins the Club for an undisclosed fee.

Positive response against Eastleigh
Iron level up after visitors score
A stirring second half display by the Iron ensured they shared the points with big spending promotion favourites Eastleigh at the Cressing Road Stadium on Tuesday evening and they were only denied a late winner by a goal line clearance by the visitors' Ryan Cresswell.
Overall though a draw was a fair result which left Iron manager Jamie Day pleased with the way his side responded from going a goal down on 64 minutes to score a deserved equaliser seven minutes later through a fine strike from Lee Barnard.
"It was a great team effort, we defended well when we had to and we had a good shape about our play," he said. "I am disappointed that we only played in patches, particularly the first half, and we need to be more adventurous in front of goal and shoot more than we have in the first two games."
Day, who made two changes from the opening game with Zach Fagan and Barney Williams coming in for their debuts replacing the injured Chez Isaac and Craig Braham-Barrett, felt his side's combination play at times was good adding: "It's going to take time to get everything together but we are making progress.
"It was a good game and we know they are a good side too but full marks to all our players for the way we came back so strongly in the second half and we could have snatched all three points at the end," he continued. "The players showed a lot of character coming back from the goal we conceded and young keeper Jamie Butler did exceptionally well with a fine first half save that kept us in the game at half time."
Barnard's debut Iron goal showed why he has a reputation for being a proven goal scorer wherever he plays but he admitted there was an element of luck about the equaliser.
"I saw the chance going forward to shoot which I did and I know the ball swerved in flight which obviously deceived their keeper and perhaps on another day he would have saved it," he explained. "But as a striker you take whatever you can get and I felt we fully deserved to at least draw."
On the all new look Iron side he said: "It was a solid performance in the second half and we have a good, strong team on which to build for the season. We've plenty of attacking players and we are starting to create chances but it will take time for us to all bed in together."
He added: "Coming out of the Football League it's clear that there are some excellent experienced players and teams at this level and it's going to be hard but we are all looking forward to it and I know we are going to do well."
There were few chances for either side in a first half dominated by defences although twice Simeon Akinola went surging into the visitors' area only to be denied by last gasp tackles and Michael Cheek and Barnard worked well to go close on two occasions.
It was young Butler who pulled off the save of the half three minutes from the interval to deny Mikael Mandron a goal with his close range shot.
The second half saw the game open up more and both sides went looking for that all important opening goal.
The visitors grabbed it on 64 minutes with a little bit of fortune because James Constable's high cross-cum-shot from the right wing took a nasty deflection off Ian Gayle to leave the ball sailing over the head of the stranded Butler and into the far corner of the net.
But the Iron were quickly back on the attack with first Akinola and Cheek almost working their way into openings on the edge of the visitors' area only to be denied by excellent defending.
But the pressure paid off on 71 minutes when Barnard turned quickly inside the visitors' half and saw the defence open up and he didn't need a second invitation to go for goal and he drove the ball low and hard that it swerved violently and deceived experienced keeper Ross Flitney, going under his body into the net.
From then on it was all Iron as they surged forward for a possible winner and Cheek, Akinola, Barnard and Jack Midson all went close only to be denied by stout defending.
Then in the final moments of what was an entertaining game it was Eastleigh's new signing Cresswell who came to their rescue by clearing the ball off the goal line.
Braintree Town: Butler; Williams, Okimo, Gayle, Ashton; Midson, Fagan, Lee, Akinola; Cheek, Barnard. Unused subs: Maybanks, Cowler (gk), Rees, Fordon, Goodman. Attendance: 766. Referee: Constantine Hatzidakis.
Next up for the Iron is a home game against Macclesfield in the Vanarama National League on Saturday, kick off 3pm.

Iron denied at North Ferriby
Visitors dominate second half
Iron picked up a point in the opening game of a new National League season with this hard earned draw on Humberside on Saturday but new manager Jamie Day felt they did enough in the second half to have won and taken all three points home.
Against one of the league newcomers after an even first 45 minutes, they dominated the second half and missed five chances to have won the game comfortably.
"I'm disappointed we didn't take some of the second half chances but I'm more than pleased with the overall performance," said Day. "We needed to be more on the front foot which were in the second half and although it's early days, with so many new faces in the team, we still had plenty of movement throughout the side and everyone worked hard in what were difficult circumstances with the heat."
Day, who only had three players in the side from last season - Simeon Akinola, Chez Isaac and Michael Cheek - has done a remarkable job in such a short space of time assembling a new, strong Iron squad.
"We knew it was going to be tough but I'm happy at the way things are going," he continued. "We looked solid at the back and with Cheeky and Lee Barnard up front we are going to score goals."
It was a frustrating opening game for Cheek who worked tirelessly in attack and twice early in the second half raced clear only to shoot over and earlier when he had fired in a tremendous shot on goal on 48 minutes home keeper Rory Watson pulled off a fantastic reaction save to deny him the opening goal.
On the hour he had another decent chance, but the fine through ball from Harry Lee was somehow scrambled away by a last gasp piece of home defending. A few minutes later he again escaped his marker but this time put his shot just wide with only the home keeper to beat.
In the first minute of three added injury time minutes at the end of the game he somehow missed a rebounded shot from Lee Barnard and look to be heading the ball home almost on the home goal line but the ball was scrambled away.
Manager Day though understood Cheek's frustration at not scoring an opening day hat-trick adding: "It happens to strikers on some days and on another day Cheeky could have had a hat-trick, but I can't fault his work-rate and commitment to the side and his unselfish running."
Substitute defender Jake Goodman, who came on for the injured Craig Braham-Barrett on 57 minute, was also unlucky not to score on 73 minutes when his header from a Harry Lee free-kick rattled the home crossbar before being cleared.
"Jake did well when he came on and was unlucky to not to have broken the deadlock and he linked up well with Jon Ashton in the heart of the defence too when we had to move Ian Gayle to right-back to replace Craig," said Day.
The Iron certainly looked strong at the back throughout with Ashton outstanding while in midfield both Isaac and newcomer Harry Lee look to be quickly forming an impressive partnership.
New skipper Ashton said: "I think all the lads put in a good shift today in what were hot conditions. We had a game plan and it worked, certainly in the second half where we dominated and Cheeky could have had a hat-trick which on another day I'm sure he would."
He added: "We're all new players with just six weeks of training together and it will take time but I think there's no reason why we can't do as well as the side did last season.
"There's a great team spirit within the squad and we are still getting to know the way each player plays," he continued. "We'll take each game as it comes and I know we will continue to grow stronger as a unit."
In reality over the 90 minutes the Iron were the better side - they had 14 corners to just one for the home side - and the only time the hosts looked like possibly scoring was just before the interval when Curtis Bateson cut inside from the right and took a surprise shot at the Iron goal. With keeper Jamie Butler beaten the ball hit the bar and was cleared but from then on the home side never really threatened the Iron goal.
In the last minute of normal time in the first half the Iron almost snatched the lead when Barnard at the far post knocked the ball down to the unmarked Cheek and his tremendous first time volley was crucially deflected away at the last minute by defender Jake Shelton.
Iron now face two home games with Eastleigh coming to the Cressing Road Stadium on Tuesday (kick off 7.45pm) and Maccesfield visit on Saturday for another league game, kick off 3pm.
Braintree Town: Butler; Braham-Barrett (Goodman 57), Gayle, Ashton, Okima; Midson, Isaac, Lee, Akinola; Cheek, Barnard. Unused subs: Maybanks, Fagan, Rhodell-Gordon, Cowler. Attendance: 557. Referee: Tom Bramwell.

Car Park Season Tickets
Limited supply available again
The Club will once again be offering a limited supply of Car Park Season Tickets for the parking at the Cressing Road Stadium. As with last season, these are prices at just 40, which offers a 6 discount for the home Vanarama National League games and all cup ties free of charge. To secure your Car Park Season Tickets speak to either Chairman Lee Harding or Safety officer Kevin Christmas on Tuesday when they will be available for purchase and collection.

North Ferriby open at 1.30pm
Supporters advised to note
We have been advised by our hosts tomorrow - North Ferriby United - that turnstiles for entry into their stadium will not be open until 1.30pm. Iron supporters are advised that their clubhouse, which is located inside the ground, will not be available until the stadium is opened.

Season tickets now ready
In the post and ready for collection
Those supporters who provided a stamped addressed envelope with their application should receive their season ticket within the next few days - as these were posted on Friday. Those wishing to collect their season tickets can do so on either Tuesday or Thursday evening from the Clubhouse between 7.30pm and 9pm. Uncollected season tickets will then be available for collection from Gates 5&6 when we play Eastleigh on Tuesday, 9th August and Macclesfield Town on Saturday, 13th August.

Two victories complete pre-season
victories at Concord and Stortford
Braintree Town completed their pre-season schedule with two victories.
On Wednesday evening, Iron eased past Vanarama National League South side Concord Rangers. Goals from Sim Akinola and Michael Cheek put Braintree ahead before the Canvey Island side reduced the arrears. After the break Lee Barnard's well struck penalty restored the two-goal advantage as Iron won 3-1.
Braintree then recorded a second two-goal victory at neighbours Bishop's Stortford on Saturday.
Iron wrapped up their pre-season campaign with a comfortable win against their Vanarama National League South near neighbours.
It left new Iron manager Jamie Day satisfied with his side's overall performance and he feels the players are finally gelling and playing some neat passing football while creating chances in front of goal.
"I knew it would be a really hard job to literally start from scratch but the new players have come in, worked hard in training and we have improved as a team ever friendly game we have played," he said. "There's still a lot of work to do but it's taking shape, players are helping each other and we're getting more cohesion together but we all know these things take time.
"What has pleased me in the last two games is how we are coping with set pieces from the opposition and working more as a team from defence, to midfield and in attack," he continued. "We've now free week in which to work on various things ahead of next Saturday's opening game and everyone is looking forward to it."
Day has faced a mammoth task of completely rebuilding an Iron squad left with just three players from last season's play-off finals - Simeon Akinola, Michael Cheek, Chez Isacc - but he is confident that his basic 18-man squad is now in place and ready for the kick off.
"We know what to expect at this level and I think we have a good blend of experienced players and younger, ambitious players who can adapt to this level," he added.
In this final friendly it took the Iron only five minutes to take the lead when a fine work move down the left saw Cheek cut and from the edge of the area drive a low shot into the right hand corner of the net.
And early in the second half it was Cheek, clearly enjoying his partnership with new fellow striker Lee Barnard up front, who created the second goal beating off two home defenders to pull the ball square from the left into the penalty box where the experienced Barnard quickly slotted it into the net.
The Iron created further chances particularly in the second half and they certainly looked more potent in attack than last season with the experienced striker Jack Midson, a former Stortford player, playing a deeper role down the right-hand side and on the left flank former Dover Athletic winger Craig Braham-Barrett causing problems with his speed and crossing down that side for the home defence.
A few times in the first half the Iron defence were put under pressure and were clearly missing the experience influence of new central defender Jon Ashton, the ex-Crawley Town defender, who was rested for this game having picked up a knock in the midweek game at Concord Rangers.
The Iron's two new full-backs, former Welling Utd's Barney Williams at right-back and Joshua Okimo, who was at Stevenage last season, playing at left-back both gave solid enough performances against Stortford.
With Isaac and newcomer Harry Lee setting up a formidable midfield partnership the Iron always had that bit too much for the opposition to never gain control of midfield.
Braintree Town (first half): Butler; Williams, Okimo, Gayle, Fagan; Midson, Isaac, Lee, Braham-Barrett; Barnard, Cheek. Among the second half substitutes were: Sim Akinola, Jake Goodman, Luke Mallett, Isaac Galliford, Jamie Stephens. Attendance: 212. Referee: Steve Bates.
Iron open their Vanarama National League season with an away game at North Ferriby United on Saturday, kick off 3pm, followed by their first home game on Tuesday, August 9 against Eastleigh.

New friendly Saturday
Iron off down the A120
Following the cancellation of the friendly at home to Cambridge United, Braintree Town will now send the first team squad to local neighbours Bishop's Stortford for a replacement friendly this Saturday, 30th July, with kick-off at 3pm.

Cambridge Friendly Postponed
Pitch reinstatement not completed
Saturday's pre-season friendly match at home to Cambridge United has been postponed. Representatives of our opponents inspected the progress made with the reinstatement of the Cressing Road Stadium pitch following recent drainage works and, despite improvement over recent days, both clubs have agreed that the pitch is not yet ready. Watch for announcements over the next few days about a possible replacement fixture.

Pre-season progress
Two wins and a draw in five days
Iron continued their pre-season build-up with a 3-1 victory at Lowestoft Town on Saturday. Having fallen behind early on, Harry Lee's 25-yarder levelled things up for Iron just before the break. The second half saw Braintree in control and finally overcome the home side's resistance seven minutes before the end when Jack Midson converted a cross from the left. This was followed four minutes later when Isaac Galliford steered the ball home from close range.
The win at Love Road completed an encouraging week for Iron who had drawn 2-2 at Maldon & Tiptree on Thursday night, 48 hours after winning 5-0 at Thurrock.
At Maldon, Sim Akinola in the first half and Jack Midson after the break scored for Iron to level things up at both 1-1 and 2-2. At Thurrock Braintree's goals came from Ian Gayle, Chez Isaac, Lee Barnard, Sim Akinola and Michael Cheek.
Next up for Iron is a trip to Concord Rangers on Wednesday, 27th July, followed by the visit of Cambridge United on Saturday, 30th July, to the Cressing Road Stadium, with kick-off at 3pm.

Changes to Thursday's Friendly
First team travel to Maldon
The first team will now take the friendly against Maldon & Tiptree, which has now been switched to Maldon & Tiptree's Park Drive ground in Maldon (postcode: CM9 5JQ, Tel: 01621 853762). At the same time a Braintree Town XI will also play a match at Scraley Road, against Heybridge Swifts reserves.

Changes to Tuesday's Friendly
Iron now travel to Thurrock
We have spoken with Gillingham today and they have inspected the Cressing Road stadium pitch. As a result of that (and despite the progress of recent days) Tuesday evening's friendly match a home to Gillingham has now been postponed. Braintree will now send a side to visit Ryman League side Thurrock on Tuesday evening, with kick-off at 7.45pm.

Friendly at Stanway Rovers Saturday
Replacement game for tomorrow
Just to confirm - we are grateful to our friends at Stanway Rovers for hastily arranging a pre-season friendly for us at their Hawthorns ground - tomorrow afternoon - with kick-off at 1pm. The match will include the full first team squad.

Southend Friendly Postponed
Club to review pitch prior to Tuesday
Saturday's pre-season friendly match at home to Southend United has been postponed. Representatives of our opponents were invited to inspect the progress made with the reinstatement of the Cressing Road Stadium pitch following recent drainage works and they decided not to play the fixture. We will review the pitch prior to next Tuesday evening's friendly match with Gillingham.

Iron beaten at Ram Meadow
Bury beat Braintree 3-1
Braintree Town made the short journey to Bury Town on Tuesday evening and came home beaten by three goals to one. With the first team squad and a number of trialists split into two sides for each half, Iron looked lively before the break, but conceded against the run of play mid-way through the half. Two further goals after the break put the home side 3-0 ahead before a late deflected own-goal gave Iron a late consolation.

First friendly sees Iron win 3-0
Barnard brace & Maybanks shot see Braintree prevail
Braintree Town made the short journey to face Ryman League Division One (North) side Heybridge Swifts in their first pre-season fixture under the guidance of new manager Jamie Day on Saturday.
With two complete Braintree XIs seeing a mix of both signed players and trialists, Iron powered to a first half three-goal advantage, which remained unchanged at the final whistle.
Lee Barnard gave Braintree the lead within the first minute, sweeping the ball home from close range after the Swifts keeper had done well to deny Michael Cheek's header at the far post.
Joe Maybanks added the second after nine minutes, steering his shot into the bottom right corner from the edge of the 18-yard box.
The third goal on 37 minutes was a mirror copy of the first with the predatory Barnard adding his second from close range, from another Cheek header.
Next up for Iron is the short journey up to Ram Meadow to visit another Ryman League side - Bury Town - for our second pre-season match on Tuesday, 12th July, with kick-off at 7.45pm.

Iron start away in Yorkshire
at last season's North Division Runners up & Play-off Winners
Braintree Town start their 2016/2017 Vanarama National League campaign with a trip to Yorkshire to visit newly promoted North Ferriby United on the opening Saturday of the season - 6th August. The Grange Lane club finished as runners-up in last season's competitive Vanarama North Division and secured promotion after their 2-1 victory over third-placed AFC Fylde in the North Promotion Final. Details for travel to North Ferriby United are as follows: Address: Eon Visual Media Stadium, Grange Lane, Church Road, North Ferriby, East Yorkshire HU14 3AB. Telephone: 01482 634601.
The first Vanarama National League games at the Cressing Road Stadium follow on Tuesday 9th August, when Iron entertain Eastleigh, and on Saturday 13th August, when Macclesfield Town are the visitors.
Other Vanarama National League games of note are home and away fixtures over the Christmas and New Year period with Dagenham & Redbridge. The Victoria Road club, relegated from the Football League at the end of last season, visit the Cressing Road Stadium on Boxing Day, Monday 26th December, with the return scheduled for New Year's Day.
The National League have set a full list of fixtures on the Good Friday at Easter, 14th April, when Iron entertain Guiseley. This will be closely followed by an Easter Monday trip to Torquay United on 17th April.
Braintree Town's last Vanarama National League game of the coming season at the Cressing Road Stadium will be against Barrow on the penultimate Saturday of the season, 22nd April, followed by the last game of the season away at Aldershot Town on Saturday, 29th April.
In the FA competitions, Braintree Town once again benefit from exemption until the Fourth and final Qualifying Round of the FA Cup, which will take place on Saturday, 15th October, with the draw scheduled to be made on Monday 3rd October. In the FA Trophy, Iron are exempt until the First Round Proper which will take place on Saturday 10th December, 10th, with the draw scheduled to be made on Monday 28th November.
Finally, the opening day's Vanarama National League fixtures are as follows:
Barrow v. Aldershot Town
Boreham Wood v. Forest Green Rovers
Bromley v. Tranmere Rovers
Dagenham and Redbridge v. Southport
Eastleigh v. Guiseley
Gateshead v. Chester
Macclesfield Town v. Torquay United
Maidstone United v. York City
North Ferriby United v. Braintree Town
Sutton United v. Solihull Moors
Woking v. Lincoln City
Wrexham v. Dover Athletic

Iron fixtures out on Wednesday
Who, when, what and where at 1pm
Braintree Town's National League fixtures for the forthcoming 2016/2017 season will be announced at 1pm on this coming Wednesday afternoon, 6th July. We hope to have all the matches for next season on the 'Games' link above, together with a quick overview of any interesting fixtures right here!

BBC Local Radio sign agreement
to cover 68 National League clubs

Agreement extended until 2020
The BBC Local Radio stations across England and Wales have signed an agreement with the National League to provide coverage of the leagues' matches until 2020.
The National League has 68 member clubs in three divisions, known as the National League, National League North and the National League South.
Welcoming today's announcement Jason Horton, BBC Head of Sport for England said: "Today's deal with the National League demonstrates the BBC local radio stations commitment to bring sports fans across England and Wales all the sporting action from their area. So whether you're tuning in to BBC Radio Lincolnshire's coverage of Lincoln City, listening to BBC Radio Solent reporting on Eastleigh or following one of the other 66 clubs across The National League we'll be bringing you the latest action."
Brian Barwick, Chairman at The National League said: "The National League is pleased to confirm our existing partnership has been extended until 2020. This will permit continuing stadium access with match commentary, thus complementing the excellent support given generally by BBC Local Radio stations covering all 68 member clubs and their local communities."

Midson joins Jamie's re-built Iron squad
Iron Manager Jamie Day has continued his squad re-building by signing striker Jack Midson from National League side Eastleigh at the Club last night.
The 32-year old front man started his career as a youngster at Stevenage and many Iron fans will remember him from his three years that followed at our neighbours Bishop's Stortford in the mid-noughties. Jack then enjoyed a successful season and a half at Histon, where his 25 goals in 67 games played an important part in the Bridge Road side that reached the then Conference Premier play-offs.
Five years followed in the Football League, the first two seasons at Oxford United the next three at AFC Wimbledon, where Jack scored 38 goals in 126 games, before spending the past two years at Eastleigh.
Jamie Day was pleased with his latest addition: "Jack has a proven pedigree at this level and above. I think he got a bit frustrated last season but I know he's raring to go and will do really well for us."
Day added: The lads are working hard in training, but I've still got a bit of work to finish over the next few days when I hope to add two or three more players to the squad."

Iron to visit the Island on the Wednesday
Braintree Town's pre-season friendly match at Concord Rangers has been re-arranged for a new date. Originally scheduled for Tuesday, 26th July, the game has now been delayed by 24 hours to the following day - Wednesday, 27th July, with kick-off at 7.45pm.

Can Roy's boys make the last eight?
England's Euro 2016 Round of 16 match against Iceland will be on the live screens at The Iron clubhouse tomorrow (Monday) evening, with the game kicking off at 8pm. The Clubhouse will be opening at 7pm.

Iron buy keeper from Hemel Hempstead
The Club have completed the signing of Hemel Hempstead Town goalkeeper Jamie Butler for an undisclosed fee. Jamie started his career at Met Police before moving on to Concord Rangers in 2014. Such was his form on the Island, that he was included in the England C squad two years ago. The 24-year old then spent last season at Hemel, where he spectacularly scored from a drop kick in the game at home to Sutton in February!
Iron Manager Jamie Day was pleased to secure the service of such a promising young keeper: "I've long been impressed with Jamie and he has done really well over the last couple of years. Stepping up to the National League level will be a great opportunity for him. He'll be an important part of the spine of our side."

Can we beat the clay?
It is hoped that the first phase of pitch draining works will be completed by contractors this week. Pictured above, we are advised that the installation of grid drainage system will help alleviate the pitch problems the Club has encountered in recent seasons. Can we beat the Braintree clay? - Time will tell!

Braintree Town XI to play on a Thursday evening
A Braintree Town XI will entertain Ryman League Division One (North) side Maldon & Tiptree in a pre-season friendly match at the Cressing Road Stadium on Thursday, 21st July, with kick-off at 7.45pm. Admission to all parts of the ground for this match will be just 5 for adults, 3 concessions and free to all under 18s. Proceeds for this match will go towards supporting our successful reserve side in the Thurlow Nunn League next season.

Three more agree terms
Iron manager Jamie Day has continued to make progress with his squad building, reaching agreements with three more players to join the Iron squad for next season.
Joining the club from Welling United is 21-year old midfielder Harry Lee. Harry came through the ranks at League Two side Leyton Orient, signing professional contracts on April 2013 and made his O's debut at the end of 2012-13. He went on to make six further appearances for the Brisbane Road club before two loan spells saw him play 23 games for the Park View Road club on loan before making the switch permanent in January.
The Club have signed a defender from a Football League Two side who's details will be released once his contract of employment is completed.
Jamie Day has also agreed terms with a goalkeeper, with a transfer fee agreed between his former club and Braintree Town - more details on that when the transfer paperwork is completed.

Prices announced and big discounts on offer
Ticket prices for the forthcoming pre-season friendly matches at the Cressing Road Stadium have been agreed.
Jamie Day's new-look Iron side welcome League One side Southend United on Saturday, 16th July, with kick-off at 1pm. This is followed by the visit of League One side Gillingham on Tuesday, 19th July, with kick-off at 7.45pm. Iron complete their home pre-season schedule with the visit of League Two neighbours Cambridge United on Saturday, 30th July, with kick-off at 3pm.
Prices for both the terraces and seats will be the same for all three matches.
Admission will be just 10 pounds for adults, 7 pounds for concessions and free for under 18s.
The Club are also offering a 'THREE for TWO' ticket for all three matches, which can be purchased at the Southend United match. This will cost 20 pounds for adults and 14 pounds for concessions and will provide admission for all three home pre-season matches.

Day strengthen's Iron squad
Iron Manager Jamie Day continued his squad building with three further signings at the Cressing Road Stadium on Tuesday evening. Joining the Club are a striker, a left sided midfield player and a centre-half.

Coming to the Club from League Two side Crawley Town is 31-year old forward Lee Barnard. Lee started his career as a youngster at Tottenham Hotspur, graduating through the White Hart Lane reserves before making his Premier League debut at home to Manchester United in 2006!
An Essex lad, he then spent two years at our county neighbours Southend United, making 75 appearances and scoring 37 goals, before moving on for four years at Southampton, where he scored 23 goals in 62 matches.
Lee then returned to Southend for a further season in the summer of 2014 before spending last season at Crawley. Has played a total of 246 games in the Premier and Football League.
Jamie Day was pleased with his signing: "Lee's got bags of experience, played plenty of League football and scored nearly 80 goals at that level. He'll be a great addition to the squad and I'm looking forward to working with him."

Chairman Lee Harding also wanted to thank Braintree Legend Alex Revell for his part in recommending both Braintree to Lee and Lee to Braintree: "I got a call from Alex three weeks back, he asked if we were looking for another striker and said that Lee was available after spending last season at Crawley. Al said he was a great lad, couldn't recommend him highly enough to us and said that he'd encouraged Lee to talk to us. We got in touch and he signed last night. Alex has signed for Northampton this week, but said he never forgets the role Braintree played in getting him going again and I'm sure our paths will cross again in the not too distant future!"

The second signing last night was 27-year old left-sided player Craig Braham-Barrett who joins the Club from fellow Vanarama National League side Dover Athletic.
A Londoner, Craig started his career at Charlton before spells with Peterborough United and a season in the then Conference with Macclesfield.
He then enjoyed two years in the League with Cheltenham Town, where he played 88 games. Last season saw him start at Ebbsfleet before loan spell at Woking and Whitehawk were followed by the final two months of the season at fifth-placed Dover.
Jamie Day was also delighted with securing Craig's signature: "Craig's played a lot of his football on the left in defensive roles, but I do see him pushing further forward for us. He has great pace and is a very direct player. He knows this level well and League Two and is a player with a bit of a point to prove. He certainly has the hunger I'm looking for."

The third signing is a twenty-two year old centre-half who joins Braintree from a Championship club and more details will be released when his employment with that club is completed in July.
Jamie was pleased with this addition: "He's a very good size for a centre-half, I've worked with him before and technically very good. He's played at our level and in the League. He's certainly one for the future and I'm confident he will progress - the sort of player we want at the Club."

Good news from League AGM
The National League announced at the formal meeting of Clubs who assembled at their Annual Congress at Celtic Manor on Saturday 11th June the following.
Vanarama have extended their existing Title Sponsorship deal.
The new deal will be a 12 month rolling contract which in the first instance will see them continue at least for a fourth year up to June 2018. This was excellent news for clubs to receive when announced to the meeting.
Andy Alderson MD said: "The rebrand exercise taken hby The National League 12 months ago has in part helped our own brand image grow in and outside our industry. Our profile and recognition has risen beyond our expectations. We look forward to continuing to work closely with everyone connected with the League and our early decision to extend to 2018 validates how partnerships can flourish if the mix is right".
Charlie Clapham, Vice Chairman of the League commented: "Since Vanarama joined with us two seasons ago our partnership; and above all else our friendship, has grown and this news was a massive boost to everyone present at Congress. Thanks to Andy and all his wonderful staff".

Offer extended for an amazing fourth season
With the support of both BTFC Youth and Community Iron helping the Club secure record-breaking sales of discounted season tickets for adults and concessions, our attention now switches to looking after our younger supporters - the under 18s! Again because of the support of BTFC Youth and Community Iron, we are able to extend the FREE season ticket deal for the under 18s for an amazing fourth season!
So, if you are under 18, in full time education, and would like to order a free season ticket for the forthcoming 2016/2017 season, please e-mail your request to the following e-mail address: To be eligible, your e-mail must include the following information:

- your name;
- your address;
- your date of birth; and
- your place of education

BTFC takes its responsibility for the storage of your data under the Data Protection Act very seriously. Once your season ticket application has been checked and approved, your details will be deleted from our systems. That said, the Club are about to launch a monthly e-newsletter and you will be eligible to receive a copy of this newsletter - unless you ask us not to retain your e-mail address for this purpose.
We hope to have the free Under 18s season tickets available for collection on Saturday 30 July.

Chairman appointed at Saturday's League AGM
At Saturday's National League Annual General Meeting, Braintree Town FC Chairman Lee Harding was elected to the National League's Board of Directors. He joins representatives from Aldershot Town, Bishop's Stortford, Dagenham & Redbridge, Dover Athletic, Maidstone United, Southport and Worcester City as club representatives on the Board.

Barney joins Braintree
Braintree Town manager Jamie Day has continued his re-building programme with the addition of 21-year old right back Barney Williams from Welling United. Jamie knows all about Barney, having introduced him as a seventeen year old into the first team when he was Welling manager at Park View Road.
The paperwork was completed last night at the Club and Jamie was pleased with his latest addition: "Barney is a tenacious full back, that typifies what we're looking for at Braintree. I know our fans will quickly take to him and I can see him playing at a higher level in the future."

Two Thursday evening squad games agreed
Iron manager Jamie Day has agreed two more pre-season games for his squad as the build-up to the 2016/2017 campaign continues.
On Thursday, 14th July, a Braintree Town XI will visit Thurlow-Nunn League side Stanway Rovers, with kick-off at 7.45pm. A fortnight later on Thursday, 28th July, a Braintree Town XI will visit Thurlow-Nunn League side Long Melford, with kick-off also at 7.45pm.

Clock is ticking folks
There's just three days to take advantage of the Iron Reaper season ticket discounts. Tickets at less than half price!
Adult seat season tickets have been reduced to just 160 - that's less than 7 per game! While adult ground season tickets have also been cut, to just 150, or 6.50 a game!
Concessions get whopping great big discounts too! A concession seat season ticket has been halved to just 110 - less than 4.80 a game, while the ground concession season ticket has been slashed to just 100 - or 4.35 a game.
But you need to get in quick! This limited offer expires this Saturday, 11th June!
If you would like to reap the benefit of this sensational price, e-mail your interest to NOW.
Details for those under 18s wishing to secure their FREE season tickets will be announced next Monday, 13th June.

Iron season tickets hit record levels
The latest batch of season ticket application forms have been despatched via e-mail, following the extension of the discounted season ticket scheme to Saturday, 11th June. If you have applied, please check your e-mails (in box and spam!) to see if you've received your application form.
So what's it all about? Having finished third in the National League at the end of last season and enjoyed record-breaking crowds as we reached the play-offs for promotion, the Club wanted to reward the regular Iron fans with some cracking season ticket deals to back the Iron lads in 2016/2017.
Thanks to the generous sponsorship of both our Community Iron and our affiliated BTFC Youth club, we are able to extend the previously discounted deals for season tickets for the coming campaign.
Not only will we be able to offer FREE (that's right folks - they don't come cheaper than FREE!) season tickets to all under 18s for next season, we are now able to offer BIG (and boy do we mean BIG!) discounts for adult and concession season tickets!
Yes you read it right! The prices of Braintree Town FC season tickets have been slashed!
Adult seat season tickets have been reduced from the early bird discounted price of 306 to just 160 - that's less than 7 per game!
Ground season tickets have also been cut, to just 150, or 6.50 a game!
Concessions get whopping great big discounts too! A concession seat season ticket has been halved to just 110 - less than 4.80 a game, while the Ground concession season ticket has been slashed to just 100 - or 4.35 a game.
But you need to get in quick! This is a limited offer, now extended until Saturday 11th June! If you would like to reap the benefit of this sensational price, e-mail your interest to NOW.
Details for those under 18s wishing to secure their FREE season tickets will be announced on Monday 13th June.

Clock is ticking folks!
The deal for reduced season tickets has proved to be a great success, with the initial 100 allocation going in the first three days. To accommodate the interest, the deal has been extended to Saturday, 11th June, with normal pricing in place after that date.
So what's it all about? Having finished third in the National League at the end of last season and enjoyed record-breaking crowds as we reached the play-offs for promotion, the Club wanted to reward the regular Iron fans with some cracking season ticket deals to back the Iron lads in 2016/2017.
Thanks to the generous sponsorship of both our Community Iron and our affiliated BTFC Youth club, we are able to extend the previously discounted deals for season tickets for the coming campaign.
Not only will we be able to offer FREE (that's right folks - they don't come cheaper than FREE!) season tickets to all under 18s for next season, we are now able to offer BIG (and boy do we mean BIG!) discounts for adult and concession season tickets!
Yes you read it right! The prices of Braintree Town FC season tickets have been slashed!
Adult seat season tickets have been reduced from the early bird discounted price of 306 to just 160 - that's less than 7 per game!
Ground season tickets have also been cut, to just 150, or 6.50 a game!
Concessions get whopping great big discounts too! A concession seat season ticket has been halved to just 110 - less than 4.80 a game, while the Ground concession season ticket has been slashed to just 100 - or 4.35 a game.
But you need to get in quick! This is a limited offer, now extended until Saturday 11th June! If you would like to reap the benefit of this sensational price, e-mail your interest to NOW.
Details for those under 18s wishing to secure their FREE season tickets will be announced on Monday 13th June.

Check your in box!
The lucky applicants for discounted season tickets should have received an e-mail confirmation from the Club. Check your in and spam to see if yours is there. If not - send me an e-mail to The Club is currently negotiating to see if we can get this cracking deal extended due to the high interest.

Iron to visit Scraley Road
Braintree Town Manager Jamie Day has agreed a seventh pre-season friendly. Iron will send the first team squad to visit Ryman League Division One (North) side Heybridge Swifts on Saturday, 9th July, with kick-off at 3pm.

Braintree to visit Concord
Braintree Town Manager Jamie Day has agreed a sixth pre-season friendly. Iron will send the first team squad to visit National League South side Concord Rangers on Tuesday, 26th July, with kick-off at 7.45pm.

Pre-season friendly time change
Braintree Town's pre-season friendly match at home to Southend United, scheduled for Saturday, 16th July, will now kick-off at 1pm.

New Iron manager appointed
Braintree Town have appointed Jamie Day as their new First Team Manager after agreeing terms at the Club this morning.
Jamie is, of course, well known to the Iron faithful having managed Welling United for five years up to 2014 and has subsequently managed Ebbsfleet United and been part of the successful Forest Green Rovers management team last season.
Still only 36, Jamie started his career at Arsenal, before moving on to AFC Bournemouth for a five figure fee in 1999.
He then enjoyed spells at Dover, Crawley and Welling as a player before taking over as player manager in 2009.
In his first season, Jamie led Welling to sixth place in the Conference South, missing out on the play-off places by one point.
A third-place finish at the end of the 2011-12 season saw Day lead Welling to the Conference South play-off places. His side defeated Sutton United in the play-off semi-finals, before losing to Dartford in the play-off final.
The following 2012-13 campaign however saw Day guide Welling to promotion to the Conference National as Conference South champions.
We hope to organise a 'Meet the Manager' evening in June - watch this space!

Ticket prices SLASHED!
That's right folks, ticket prices for season 2016/17 have been agreed.
Having finished third in the National League at the end of last season and enjoyed record-breaking crowds as we reached the play-offs for promotion, the Club wanted to reward the regular Iron fans with some cracking season ticket deals to back the Iron lads in 2016/2017.
Thanks to the generous sponsorship of both our Community Iron and our affiliated BTFC Youth club, we are able to extend the previously discounted deals for season tickets for the coming campaign.
Not only will we be able to offer FREE (that's right folks - they don't come cheaper than FREE!) season tickets to all under 18s for next season, we are now able to offer BIG (and boy do we mean BIG!) discounts for adult and concession season tickets!
Yes you read it right! Limited to the first 100 applicants, the prices of Braintree Town FC season tickets have been slashed!
Adult seat season tickets have been reduced from the early bird discounted price of 306 to just 160 - that's less than 7 per game!
Ground season tickets have also been cut, to just 150, or 6.50 a game!
Concessions get whopping great big discounts too! A concession seat season ticket has been halved to just 110 - less than 4.80 a game, while the Ground concession season ticket has been slashed to just 100 - or 4.35 a game.
But you need to get in quick! This is a limited offer, for the first 100 applicants! If you would like to reap the benefit of this sensational price, e-mail your interest to NOW.
Your name will then be added to the list of lucky Iron fans able to take advantage of these AMAZING discounted prices when we start taking orders for season tickets on Thursday, 9th June.
Details will follow for those under 18s wishing to secure their FREE season tickets - so watch this space!

Braintree to visit Lowestoft
Iron have agreed their fifth pre-season friendly. Braintree will send the first team squad to visit Ryman Leaguers Lowestoft Town on Saturday, 23rd July, with kick-off at 3pm.

Admission to watch is free
England C manager, Paul Fairclough, has named a 16-man squad for the International Challenge Trophy match against the holders, Slovakia Under 21, which is to be played at Sutton United FC on Sunday 5 June at 2.00pm. Included in the squad are Iron favourites Sam Habergham and Alex Woodyard. The full squad is as follows:
Brandon Hall (gk) (Ebbsfleet United), Jamie Butler (gk) (Hemel Hempstead Town), Sam Habergham (Braintree Town), James Bolton (FC Halifax Town), Ben Heneghan (Chester), Sean Raggett (Dover Athletic), Jack Holland (Bromley), Jake Gallagher (Aldershot Town FC), Alex Woodyard (Braintree Town), Dan Wishart (Sutton United), Jon Leesley (Alfreton Town), John Goddard (Swindon Town), Elliott Whitehouse (Nuneaton Town), Dayle Southwell (Boston United), Omar Bogle (Grimsby Town) and Jordan Williams (Barrow).
Admission to the game is free.

Club hope to make an announcement by the weekend
The Club have drawn up a short list of applicants, will commence a series of interviews this week for the vacant manager's job and hope to be in a position to announce the appointment by Saturday.
Chairman Lee Harding was please with the calibre of applicant. "The Club have received a wide range of applicants from those having experience at clubs in the Football League and our own division through to youngsters successful on football computer games! We are looking for ambitious manager with experience of being involved at our level of the game or above. Those on our short list all benefit from this and I look forward to talking with them over the next few days to assess their suitability to work with us."

Iron return to Ram Meadow
Iron have agreed their fourth pre-season friendly. Braintree will send the first team squad to visit Ryman Leaguers Bury Town on Tuesday, 12th July, with kick-off at 7.45pm.

Stadium site retains residential allocation
Braintree Town Football Club welcomes the unanimous decision of Braintree District Council, at its recent Local Plan Sub-Committee meeting on Monday 9th May, to retain the previous 2014 site allocation for residential use for the Club's existing stadium site, together with the adjacent land that is currently used as the Club's training ground.
A key part of Braintree District Council's new Local Plan is to produce a site allocations map for each defined settlement within the District. This map sets out key data for that area, including development boundary, conservation area, areas allocated for development and areas protected for specific uses such as open space, allotments or employment.
As part of the draft Local Plan, the allocations and development boundary for each town and village in the District have been reviewed. This review has included ensuring that the development boundary is in the correct location and making an assessment of the sites submitted in the Call for Sites as potential development options.
The possible development of the Football Club's land for residential use would help the Club contribute significantly towards the cost of the planned new community stadium.
Chairman Lee Harding welcomed the support of Cllr Lady Newton at the meeting: "This is good news for the Football Club. We are continuing to work with Braintree District Council to deliver an affordable new stadium that would secure not only the Club's long term future, but also provide a stadium that could be developed further to meet the Club's long-term aspirations of promotion to the Football League.
"That said, we also wish to be good neighbours and leave a lasting legacy should we relocate. So I also agree with Cllr Lady Newton that, were the Football Club to move, our existing site could provide a good opportunity to improve and develop further our part of Braintree."

Braintree Town are on the look out for a new manager after Danny and Nicky Cowley resigned on Thursday evening.
Chairman Lee Harding was disappointed with the news: "Yes, it's a shame for us but, first of all, I would like to thank both Danny and Nicky for their efforts throughout their year at our Club. What they have achieved with the players has been remarkable. But it seems the offer of a 500,000 playing budget and full time status has proved to be too good for them to turn down. I think it is an incredibly brave decision on their parts, but I really do hope it works out for them - they are good people.
"Our thoughts now to turn to closer to home and we now seek applicants for the management role at the Cressing Road Stadium. The past twelve months have proved that part-time clubs and, in particular, Braintree Town can compete in this division. History shows us that some clubs chose to flirt with their financial futures in a desperate scramble to secure promotion to the Football League, but we prefer to build our Club on and off the pitch on more solid foundations.
"The windfall we have received from the play-offs will allow us to further improve both our playing budget and playing surface over the coming months and I now look forward to selecting the next manager of the Club to continue our push towards our ultimate ambition."

Three home games against League opposition
Braintree Town have agreed three pre-season matches for July.
Iron will welcome League One sides Southend United on Saturday 16th July, with kick-off at 1pm, and Gillingham three days later on Tuesday 19th July, kick-off 7.45pm.
Next for Iron will be a final 'full-dress rehearsal' for Iron the week before the season starts against League Two side Cambridge United on Saturday, 30th July, with kick-off at 3pm.

Disputed penalty and extra time winner deny Iron
Braintree Town's Vanarama National League promotion hopes came to an end for another season in front of the biggest crowd seen at the Cressing Road Stadium for 64 years on Sunday.
Leading 1-0 from the first leg at Grimsby on Thursday, Iron looked to be dealing with all that the visitors could throw at them until conceding a 75th minute penalty, which Grimsby Town striker Padraig Amond despatched past Iron keeper Tom King.
Iron had their chances during the game but hopes were dented further when influential centre half Mark Phillips was dismissed for a second caution, dictating that Braintree had to battle through the thirty minutes of time added on with just ten men.
Grimsby finally made their man advantage count after 110 minutes when Omar Bogle headed home to send the North Lincolnshire club through to Wembley next Sunday.
Chairman Lee Harding paid tribute to the substantial Braintree support: "It was great to see the home parts of the ground full and to hear our vocal support echoing around the ground. It's been another great season for the Club as we continue to build and grow towards our ultimate ambition. We now take a break, rest and get ready for the pre-season friendlies which start in July (Saturday 16th) with the visit of Southend United. We hope to announce season and match ticket details over the next few days, together with other friendly matches as they are agreed."

Still tickets left - but get 'em quick!
Tickets for Sunday's Vanarama National League Promotion Play-Off Semi-Final Second Leg at home to Grimsby Town will continue to be on sale today (Saturday) from the Club Ticket Office 12 noon through to 6pm, or until the Club sell out of their allocation of tickets!
As at the start of ticket sales on Saturday, the Club have just a handful of unsold seat tickets remaining and these will probably be sold very quickly. Any supporter hopeful of securing one of these last remaining seat tickets should be at the Ticket Office at 12 noon.
There are plenty of terrace tickets remaining for the game, but supporters are recommended to attend earlier, rather than later, to ensure that they do not miss out. Ticket price information is as below.
The Club Shop will also be open adjacent to the Ticket Office for all your Iron shirts, scarves and merchandise for tomorrow's match.

Limited car parking
With BT Sport and a substantial police presence for the game, the Club Car Park is likely to fill up very quickly and will, in any case, be closed at 2pm. Supporters wishing to park are therefore advised to arrive early for the game or use either public transport or park considerately locally and walk to the stadium.

Tickets - have them ready!
All spectators will have their tickets checked before being allowed into the stadium car park and, again, to ensure that they are entering the appropriate segregated part of the stadium. Please ensure you enter the correct part of the ground - as failure to do so will be a breach of Ground rules and could lead to ejection.

When can we get in?
Turnstiles will open at 1pm and a souvenir full colour programme will be on sale 3.

Fancy a beer?
The Iron Clubhouse will be open from 1pm and those wishing to enter the away segregated area of the Stadium may wish to use The Orange Tree Public House 300 yards from the ground in Cressing Road. A reminder that no alcohol will be permitted in the stadium terraces and stands.

And finally!
We hope you all enjoy your day at the Cressing Road Stadium!

Slender lead in the play-offs
A superbly taken 53rd minute penalty by skipper Kenny Davis set the Iron on their way to a single-goal win in the first leg of the Vanarama National League play-off semi-final first leg at Blundell Park on Thursday evening giving them a slender one goal advantage for the second leg at the Cressing Road Stadium this Sunday.
The vital goal came when Simeon Akinola was jinking his way through the home defence only to be brought down by Josh Gowling giving referee John Brooks no hesitation in awarding the Iron a penalty.
Once in front the Iron had to put up a determined rearguard action to stop the home side from equalising and it took a fine reaction save from Iron keeper Tom King to deny Padraig Amond a goal and a superb defensive clearance by Matt Fry to see them home.
But the Iron stood firm to a man and returned home with a win setting up a tantalising second leg game.
It was the second time within a month the Iron have overcome the odds to go to Blundell Park and win by the odd goal but manager Dan Cowley was full of praise for his side after this latest victory claiming that in terms of concentration they "have raised it to another level."
He went on: "I thought our work rate and pitch coverage was excellent, our physicality and our willingness to put bodies on the line was great but the thing I was most pleased about was with our concentration levels.
"We found a new level in that area and our focus was excellent and that's great from a manager's point of view," he continued. "But the job is only half done, we're only 1-0 up at half-time and we are just half way up the mountain but we are all pleased with tonight's performance."
The home side made have had the lion share of possession in the game but it was the Iron players' resilience and never-say-die attitude and commitment that played a big part in this victory as it has for the bulk of the season.
"We knew the first 20 minutes would be crucial and we managed that period well which would be of great help to us," he continued. "Grimsby constantly asked us questions so we had to be on our guard and had to try and contain them at time which we did.
"They have goals throughout their team and they are a real threat but I was really pleased how well we defended, particularly when they put a lot of pressure on us to try and get an equaliser," he explained. "In that second half they had one or two chances and Tom (King) had to make a few good saves but we rode our luck and kept another clean sheet."
The game, watched by a crowd of 5,189 which included 82 Iron supporters, had a great atmosphere and Cowley felt the home supporters really got behind their team adding: "It was a fantastic atmosphere and although our fans were outnumbered about 80 to one they could be heard above the din and again did us proud on the night."
It was the Iron's 24th clean sheet of the season and Cowley was full of praise for skipper Davis keeping his cool and slotting home that crucial penalty.
"Kenny was excellent and he didn't put a pass out of place all evening and he controlled the game in midfield as he does," said Cowley. "He is so composed and he helps everyone around him with his coolness."
On the penalty decision Cowley felt the referee was exactly right adding: "The foul was right on the line and credit to the referee who had to be brave in front of that big home crowd to give the right decision."
In the first half it was the Iron who looked the more dangerous side with Davis, Akinola, Michael Cheek, Mitch Brundle all going close with chances and even defender Matt Fry almost broke the deadlock on 33 minutes with a shot following a corner but the ball was somehow scrambled away.
Once in front the Iron had to defend for length periods and they did in such an outstanding manner that any neutrals watching the game would have been impressed by their work ethic and commitment for each other.
So it turned out to be another great night for the Iron who fully deserved their lead going into the second leg.
Braintree Town: King; Long, Fry, Phillips, Habergham; Brundle, Paine, Davis Woodyard; Cheek (Marks 76), Akinola (Sparkes 83). Unused subs: Clerima.

Sunday, 8th May, kick-off 3pm
Braintree Town's Vanarama National League Promotion Play-Off Semi Final Second Leg will take place on Sunday 8th May with kick-off at 3pm. This match will be ALL TICKET, with NO cash entry available at the turnstiles on the day. Segregation WILL be in force. The game will be a category 'A' match. Given the larger than usual crowd expected for this match, spectators are advised to be inside the ground by 2.30pm. Prices for the match will be as follows:

Seats adults 18, Seats concessions 12
Ground adults 17, Ground OAPs and concessions 11
Ground U16s 6 and Ground U11s 4

Please note as this match is a play-off match, season tickets are not valid for this game.

Braintree Town supporters can purchase their tickets from the Ticket Office.

Ticket sales will initially be restricted to Braintree Town season ticket holders only on Friday, 6th May for a one hour priority period from 12 noon - 1pm. Season Ticket holders should bring their season tickets with them when purchasing tickets during the priority period.

Any season ticket holder unable to attend during the priority period, but wishing to reserve a ticket, will be able to do so via e-mail to: These tickets will then be held for collection until 3pm on Saturday. If the tickets are not collected by that time, they will be released for general sale.

Tickets will go on general sale on Friday, 6th May from 1pm - 7pm and on Saturday, 7th May from 12 noon - 6pm.

Tickets for Grimsby Town supporters will be available from Grimsby Town FC from this evening. No tickets for visiting supporters will be available from Braintree Town FC.

To gain entry to the ground, visiting spectators should use the two turnstiles to the right of the Main Stand and clubhouse, numbered 7 and 8. Home spectators should use the four turnstiles to the left on the clubhouse, numbered 1, 2, 3 and 4. Any spectators found in the incorrect section of the stadium will be in breach of the Club's stadium rules and may be ejected.

The Club are mindful of the limited parking we have available at the ground. Following the advice received from Essex Police, the Club have decided to charge for entry into the car park - with a flat rate of 2 for all users. Essex Police have also suggested that the car park be closed prior to kick-off to ensure that there is no congestion between pedestrian spectators and vehicles. No vehicles will be allowed entry into the car park within one hour prior to kick-off.

Those travelling to the Cressing Road Stadium for the first time can find more information on how best to travel by clicking on the 'Find Us' link above. The Clubhouse at the Cressing Road Stadium can only be accessed from inside the designated home section of the ground. For further information, please contact the Club on 01376 345617 or 01376 330976.

Watching the game at Grimsby
We have now been advised of the arrangements that will apply for tickets for the Vanarama National League Promotion Play-Off Semi Final First Leg.
The gates at Blundell Park will open at 6pm.
Grimsby are allocating a maximum of 586 seats for Braintree Town fans - in the Osmond Stand Covered Corner.
These will only be available on-line at
Please note there is a 50p admin fee applied to each ticket sold on-line.
Tickets will be for collection only from the GTFC ticket office until 6pm on Thursday and then from Harrington Street turnstiles 15-18 after 6pm.
Prices are as follows:
16 Adults
10 OAPs (65+), Young Adults (15-18)
4 Accompanied Juniors (14 & under)
6 Unaccompanied Juniors (14 & Under)

Away & Home against Grimsby
Braintree Town's first leg of the Vanarama National League Promotion Play-Off Semi-Final is at Grimsby Town on Thursday, 5th May, kick off 7pm, with the second leg at the Cressing Road Stadium on Sunday, 8th May, kick off 3pm. More news will follow over the next few days!

Cheeks & Brundle score the goals against Alty
IRON made club history by making it into the National League play-offs for the first time and finishing third - their highest ever league position - after a thoroughly professional performance at the Cressing Road Stadium on Saturday which, sadly, dictated the visitors were relegated.
The manner of the Iron victory, thanks to a brace from Michael Cheek and one from Mitch Brundle, was typical of the side's consistent performance all season where they showed great team spirit and workmanship taking the game to their visitors from start to finish.
The result left manager Dan Cowley almost speechless for the first time this season when he said: "I can't really believe it - we've made it over the line and finished third - its a fairytale and quite amazing.
"There aren't many things that shock me in football but I can't believe actually that we've done as well as we have done," he continued. "We're all pleased to have got over the line because it's been a very long and hard last week as people as you can imagine.
"I just can't say how much I am really proud of that group of boys because they have worked so hard all season overcoming all kinds of obstacles on the way so it's pleasing to see them get the success that their hard work deserves," Cowley explained.
"The game plan today was to make sure we had a good start and took control of the game in the first 20 minutes and that's exactly what we did," he declared. "We wanted an aggressive mindset and wanted to immediately get on the front foot and we did that scoring a great goal through Cheeky.
"We could then settle down and control the game to the end which did in a really professional way," he continued. "With the pressure the players were under I though to a man they were excellent and it was another outstanding performance."
He added: "Some people think we always do better against the bigger, better and full-time, high profile teams but we showed today that when the pressure is on us and we may be favourites to win the players can still cope with that and play to the level that we can do."
He added: "Again that was pleasing and it showed it was another question answered."
Vocally supported by a crowd of 1,803 - the highest home attendance of the season - and in front of a live BT television audience Iron put on a master class display with every player knowing what they had to do to achieve a play-off spot.
Dominating from the first whistle the Iron swamped the visitors' rearguard and the only surprise was that it took 17 minutes to score their first goal.
It stemmed down the left wing where Sim Akinola, who tormented the visitors all afternoon with his mazy runs, escaped defenders and his low cross was met at the far post by the on-rushing Cheek who forced the ball home past keeper Adam Griffin.
Both Brundle, Kenny Davis, Akinola and Cheek again all went so close to adding a second goal.
It finally came three minutes from the interval when the ever industrious Brundle worked his way down the right wing and crossed the ball to Cheek who half-volleyed it into the net.
Neither goals were classics but they counted as Cheek said afterwards: "They were a bit scruffy but I don't mind because they ended up in the net and I'm always on the look out for any chances from close range."
Two goals up at the break and well in control the Iron needed that third goal to effectively kill off any hopes the visitors had of a comeback and it duly came on 63 minutes thanks again to the tenacious midfielder Brundle.
It was all created down the left wing by another jinking run by Akinola, who left three defenders in his wake, ran down and cut in from the byline only to see his initial shot on goal charged down but the ever alert Brundle was on hand to stroke the loose ball home from close range past the hapless keeper Griffin.
It was no more than the Iron deserved as they continued to push forward for a fourth goal and as the final minutes ticked away they had chances too against a now completely demoralised visitors who had known at the start they had to win the game to stand any chance of staying up.
At the final whistle the Iron fans celebrated as did the players who finally realised that they had created Club history and can now look forward to the play-offs with no pressure on the team.
All the players performed excellently and were all 'man of the match' but at the post game presentations on the pitch the players' player of the year award went to a shocked Alec Woodyard who without doubt as been one of the most consistent performers all season.
"I'm quite shocked because I didn't expect that," he said. "But although I am pleased it's been a real team effort by all the players from start to finish.
"It's a miracle really - little old Braintree Town up there third in the league - but I thought we were excellent today because we were direct, broke the play up when needed and got the ball forward quickly," he explained. "I think at times it was the best we've played all season and going into the play-offs you couldn't have asked form us to be in better form either."
Braintree Town: King; Long, Phillips, Fry, Habergham; Brundle, Paine, Davis (Miles 75), Woodyard; Akinola (Sparkes 78), Cheek (Marks 65), Unused subs: Cardwell, Clerima. Attendance: 1,803. Referee: Ollie Yates (Newcastle).

Tickets available on Tuesday and Thursday evening
For those wishing to avoid the queues to pay on Saturday (and use the ticket holders turnstiles 5 & 6) tickets will now be available for cash only purchase in advance on both Tuesday and Thursday evening from 7.30pm - 9pm in the Clubhouse at the Cressing Road Stadium.

Category C prices for the final day
For our final Vanarama National League fixture against Altrincham on Saturday, 30th April, segregation will NOT be in force. This game will NOT be all ticket. All spectators are reminded that this match kicks-off at 5.30pm.
However, with both sides needing points from the game, a larger than usual attendance is expected for the match.
Adult admission prices for the ground for this match have been reduced to just 15 and this game will therefore be a Category C fixture. All admission prices for this match can be found by clicking the 'Tickets' link above.
The Club will be opening additional turnstiles from 3.30pm on Saturday. For those wishing to avoid the queues to pay on the day (and use the ticket holders turnstiles 5 & 6) tickets will be available for cash only purchase in advance on Thursday evening from 7.30pm - 9pm in the Clubhouse at the Cressing Road Stadium.
Anyone wishing to sit should purchase their seat ticket either on Thursday evening or at the turnstile when they enter the ground - there will be no cash transactions within the ground for upgrades to seats.
To gain entry to the ground, ticket and season ticket holders should use gates 5 and 6. Those spectators wishing to pay on the day should use the four turnstiles to the left of the clubhouse, numbered 1, 2, 3 and 4.
The Club are mindful of the limited parking we have available at the ground. Following the advice received from Essex Police, the Club have decided to charge for entry into the car park - with a flat rate of just 2 for all users. Essex Police have also suggested that the car park be closed prior to kick-off to ensure that there is no congestion between pedestrian spectators and vehicles. As a result, no vehicles will be allowed entry into the car park after 5pm.
The Clubhouse at the Cressing Road Stadium will be open to all spectators and access is from inside the ground.
Those travelling to the Cressing Road Stadium for the first time can find more information on how best to travel by clicking on the 'Find Us' link above.
For further information, please contact the Club on 01376 345617 or 01376 330976 or via e-mail to

Play-off hopes go down to the final day
Braintree edged to within one point of the National League play-offs after a fine 3-2 win at the Racecourse Stadium on Saturday with a team performance that manager Dan Cowley described as "incredible where every player worked their socks off for 90 minutes."
The victory puts Iron in fifth place with 78 points and with sixth place Eastleigh losing at home to Tranmere Rovers, leaving both those teams on 75 points, Iron still need a point from their final game at home to Altrincham on Saturday to reach the play-offs.
"We know what we have to do, nobody is getting carried away," said Cowley. "This game against a top quality full-time side was really hard and we knew we would have to weather their pressure when they came back strongly against us.
"But despite going behind after taking such an early first half lead, I know this group of players and that they would come back again and keep their composure," said Cowley. "It was an incredible effort from all the players who showed tremendous work rate from the first whistle.
"They worked their socks off and to come to such an imposing former Football League ground in front of a decent crowd of fervent fans with vocal support, the players put in a fantastic performance," he continued. "They had to dig deep at times and they certainly did and it was also good to hear our supporters in such vocal support, particularly in the second half when we were defending hard yet pushing hard for a winner and the players really appreciated it."
The Iron started with the same starting line up at Gateshead last week and had the best possible start taking the lead on three minutes when Michael Cheek raced through on goal beating defender Jamal Fyfield to fire a shot low into the bottom right-hand corner of the net.
But on 11 minutes the home side where level when poor Iron defending allowed a free-kick into their area to be headed home by Simon Heslop and it looked like going from bad to worse on 38 minutes when Iron skipper Kenny Davis fouled Connor Jennings outside the left side of the Iron area.
The kick was taken by defender Lee Fowler who drove it low into the Iron penalty box where the ball evaded everyone ending up in the far corner of the net in what for Braintree was a poor goal to give away.
Undeterred, Iron fought back and both Cheek and Mitch Brundle immediately went close to equalising but the Braintree equaliser did come, crucially, two minutes before half time - when they swept up field and Davis created a half chance for Sim Akinola. His shot was blocked and the ball ran kindly to Cheek who wasted no time in driving the ball low past keeper Rhys Taylor.
It was just the half-time tonic Iron needed and they came out in the second half to dominated most of the game and Cheek, Davis, Miles and defender Mark Phillips all went close.
Again the Iron defence coped with a series of sporadic home attacks and on the counter attack they always looked the more dangerous and of the two sides the one likely to find the net.
Twice Brundle went close with shots just wide of the upright, but the 21 year-old was not to be denied his glory of scoring the winning goal for the second week running.
It came on 81 minutes when again the ever industrious Davis seized on a chance to move over the half way line to lay the ball into the on-running Brundle who calmly evaded two chasing defenders to fire a great right-foot shot into the top right-hand corner of the home net, giving keeper Taylor no chance.
It was no more than Iron deserved particularly for their persistence and never-say-die attitude throughout the game and despite the home side throwing everyone forward in the dying minutes the Braintree rearguard held firm and deservedly returned home with the three points.
So it's all down to next Saturday's final home game of the season again Altrincham (note the kick off is 5.30pm like all National League games on the day).
Braintree Town: King; Long, Fry, Phillips, Habgerham; Brundle, Miles (Paine 60), Davis, Woodyard (Sparkes 68); Akinola, Cheek (Cardwell 74). Unused subs: Clerima, Edgar. Attendance: 4,507 (including 79 from Braintree). Referee: Adrian Holmes.

Successive victories see Iron move up
IRON eased themselves back up into the play-off places with a grafting performance which gave them a deserved win at the International Athletic Stadium on Saturday after which manager Dan Cowley admitted his side were "dead on their feet at the end."
"I have to be honest and say although we deserved our win it was a really hard game for the players who in the second half were clearly tired and suffering from our exhaustive recent schedule of games," he explained. "We're not complaining but as a part-time outfit it has caught up with them - in reality at least five of our players were obviously only about 70 per cent on their game on the day.
"But again they all showed so much determination and sheer guts to get us a result which was so important and is why we are where we are," Cowley continued. "The players are tired but nobody is moaning because we knew it was going to be tough coming here and getting a result.
"In the first half although we had a great start scoring in the fourth minute I wasn't happy with the way we were allowing them to get crosses in when we normally close down so well," he said. "Which is why I was disappointed with the way we gave the equalising goal away and again in the second half when we allowed them to score again which was down to an individual mistake."
But Cowley was full of praise for the way his players responded to their half time talk adding: "We sorted it out, scored a vital third goal within a couple of minutes of the restart and that set us on the way to victory but I knew it would be harder for our players in the latter part of the second half because they were tired - although in the end I still think we were well in control and ran out worthy winners."
The Iron hero on the day was young Taylor Miles, starting the game in place of the injured Chez Isaac, who produced two stunning strikes that set Iron on their way to victory.
He opened the scoring on four minutes with one of his now customary trademark free-kicks from outside the area which sailed over the wall into the top right corner of the net giving home keeper Sam Russell no chance.
But the 46 Irons fans in the 588 crowd were soon shocked when the home side equalised on 13 minutes when Heed defender Ben Clark was allowed time and space from a left wing corner to drill a low right shot home from just inside the area.
Then three minutes later the Iron were back in front when Miles again found space to drove home a right foot shot low in the bottom corner of the net to restore his side's lead.
Iron continued to press forward as they overran their hosts and first Mark Phillips headed a goal bound effort which was scrambled away before Cheek almost foiled keeper Russell with another good effort.
The clearly demoralised home side suffered another blow on 34 minutes when Cheek raced through and was clear on goal with a one-on-one with Russell when he was brought down from behind crashing to the ground by James Curtis just inside the area.
Sadly for the Iron referee Steven Rushton, rightly showing a red card to Curtis but although it was clearly a penalty the man in the middle declared it was on the actual line but the resultant Miles free-kick this time just dropped over the bar.
Right on half time Sim Akinola, back in the Iron side from injury, saw two goal bound shots hurried cleared by the home defence as the Iron continued to dominate.
The second half saw the ideal start for the Iron with Mitch Brundle charging through the home defence on the right before delivering a great low right-foot shot into the net that gave Russell not chance.
Three minutes later Brundle had an almost identical shot heading towards the net but somehow Russell managed to get a hand to it to push it around the post.
Despite being down to 10 men the home side rallied and they pulled a goal back on 64 minutes when a right wing cross was poorly defended by Iron, allowing Alex Whitemore to stab the ball into the net from close range.
But any hope the home side, who are full-time players, had to salvaging something from the game quickly eroded with the some fresh legs coming on as substitute for the Iron, most notably the influential Matt Paine (76 minutes) welcomed back after injury who immediately slotted into his customary midfield role bringing much needed stability to the his side.
From then on until the final whistle the Iron players although clearly tiring remained in controlled and picked up another vital three points.
Afterwards goal scoring hero Miles said: "I was really confident that I would score from the free-kick although Sam (Habergham) was with me and wanted to take it but I said he couldn't and that was that!
"The second goal came because although I had a defender in front of me I could see an open space down the bottom right hand side and the keeper nowhere so I went for it and scored," he explained. "I should have scored from the other free-kick I had before half-time but the wall moved just as I was about to kick it - anyway it should have been a penalty in the first place because Cheeky was well inside the area when he was brought down."
Cowley, commenting on his young goal scoring hero, said: "I've said before he is rather special and has now scored three excellent goals in two games. I have underused him perhaps which is my fault and you learn from that, and he is still so young but he is maturing fast and I think will develop into a tremendous all-round footballer."
The Iron now head off to Wrexham on Saturday and Cowley added: "We know that will again be another tough game but we're still in the mix and have nothing to lose and everything to gain so there's no pressure on us.
"Whatever happens now we can say we have had an outstanding season and know what we are capable of," concluded Cowley. "I am really proud of the boys because to do what we have done, particularly in the recent hectic schedule of games and being part-time, has been remarkable."
This Iron wins gives them 75 points for the season - the highest since being promoted five years ago.
Braintree Town: King; Long, Fry, Phillips, Habergham; Brundle, Woodyard, Davis (Powell 72), Miles (Payne 76); Akinola, Cheek (Cardwell 77). Unused subs: Marks, Edgar. Referee: Steven Rushton (Stoke-on-Trent). Attendance: 588 (including 48 travelling Iron fans).

Taylor-made finish earns three points at Grimsby
Iron pulled off a fantastic win at Brundell Park on Tuesday evening and with it three vital points in keeping them in contention for the play-offs.
It was a thoroughly professional performance by the Iron from start to finish with a solid defensive display, creativity in midfield and persistent pressure in attack and they never gave the home side gain a look-in from the first to the last whistle.
The crucial winning goal came on 77 minutes when striker Michael Cheek typified the Iron players' never-say-die attitude when he chased and hassled two home defenders down near the right wing corner flag on what looked like a lost cause.
He managed though to help squeeze the ball out through two defenders to substitute Taylor Miles nearby and he raced clear along the byline before calmly sliding the ball between the legs of keeper Jame McKeown and into the net.
It was no more than the Iron deserved because they had taken the game to their hosts from the start, pressurised them into mistakes and overall controlled the game for long periods.
The result and performance left manager Dan Cowley a delighted man, describing it about the best performance of the season from his side adding: "It was a great team performance from all the boys who were all excellent.
"We came with a set game plan to be compact with no gaps and to give a cohesive display and forcing them from our defence back into their half and not letting them gain a foothold on the game," he explained. "We did that for the whole game and the players never gave up.
"We were down to the bare bones of a squad too with both Sim Akinola and Sean Marks unfit with groin injuries but again the players as a group showed what great character and resilience they have," he said.
With the back four defenders, led by another exceptional performance from both central defenders Mark Phillips and Matt Fry, and they controlled the midfield all evening with Kenny Davis, Mitch Brundle and Alex Woodyard preventing the home side from all too often breaking out to attack.
"We needed to keep the right balance throughout the side, which we did expertly, and then put them under pressure so as to frustrate them all evening," Cowley added. "Yes, it was a good performance but we mustn't get excited or carried away with it - our focus is now for a repeat performance at Gateshead on Saturday."
The Iron started the game at a fast pace forcing four corners within the first six minutes forcing the home defence on each occasion to scramble the ball away to safety.
Of the 74th minute substitution in bringing on Miles the manager admitted: "On reflection I should have perhaps brought him on a little earlier because he has so much energy and pace.
"He chases lost causes as he did when he came on and it resulted in him scoring a great goal - that's the third time this season he has come on and scored vital and great individual goals," Cowley said. "He won the ball from Michael's hassling and sprinted clear and he only had one objective in mind and that was to put the ball in the back of the net and it was an excellent finish."
But for some inconsistent finishing early by the Iron they could have scored more than one goal because they were that superior over the home side, sitting third in the table but who looked jaded at times, while their players were unable to cope with the Iron players' constant passing and pressure.
It was not until the third minute of four minutes added stoppage time after the 90 minutes that the home side created any real threat in the Iron defence when in a goalmouth scramble the ball clipped the top of the Iron crossbar before going behind.
It would have been an injustice had the home side scrambled a last minute equaliser because overall the Iron were the better team and deserved all three points.
Braintree Town: King; Long, Fry, Phillips, Habergham; Isaac (Miles 74), Davis, Woodyard, Sparkes (Edgar 79); Brundle, Cheek. Unused subs: Marks, Haigh, Powell. Attendance: 3,010 (including 28 Iron supporters). Referee: Mr P Jones.
Next up for Iron is a trip to Gateshead this coming Saturday, 16th April, with kick-off at 3pm.

Four to play and Iron still in the play-off mix
Braintree Town maintained their strong chase for a play-off place with a workmanlike performance that earned them a draw while all but ending the visitors' outside chance of winning the championship outright.
A stirring, dominating second half performance from the Iron also saw them nearly snatch all three points but for the woodwork and three outstanding saves by visiting keeper Steve Arnold.
A return to form after three successive defeats for the Iron delighted manager Dan Cowley who felt their much improved second half display in which they created all the attacking danger in the visitors' area should have seen them win the game.
"We had our game plan set out from the start and knew what to expect from what is a really good side with lots of experience and full-time too," he said. "We obviously didn't want to give an early goal away, as at Barrow in midweek, but keep out shape and discipline and not give anything away certainly pressing them hard for the first two-thirds of the match.
"We knew they would then start to try and open up the game more, push more men forward which they did because they were desperate to win," he continued. "But as the second half went on we controlled the game had a couple of chances which saw the ball cleared off their goal line and their keeper made two excellent saves to keep them in the game."
But Cowley again praised his side's 'never say die' attitude adding: "I know they are an honest and hard working group of players and despite being tired from our two long journeys for games in the previous week still showed so much character and resilience in this match against a truly top side."
He added: "I am really proud of them and they will all go again this next week with two more tough away games at Grimsby and then Gateshead."
The visitors certainly started this game strongly, moving the ball swiftly around causing the usually reliable Iron defence a few problems early on but on the counter attack both Sim Akinola and Chez Isaac were denied goal chances by last ditch defending from the visitors.
The breakthrough came in the Iron's favour on 34 minutes when Akinola slipped the ball out to the right where visiting defender James Jennings missed his interception allowing Isaac to skip through into the area where he was literally flattened by Jennings who was trying to make amends for his mistake.
Up stepped Iron skipper Kenny Davis to slot the ball home from the penalty spot but the Iron's lead only lasted three minutes when the visitors swept up field and a left wing cross was nodded down by the experienced Jon Parkin and the loose ball conveniently fell straight to the feet of Darren Carter who drove home giving Iron keeper Tom King no chance.
The visitors with their renewed confidence pushed forward and it took a fine save from King in added on first half stoppage time to stop Charlie Clough from scoring.
The second half though saw the Iron more in the ascendancy as they dominated the game more giving the visitors no real clearcut goal scoring chances.
On the hour Isaac fired a good shot goal ward but straight at keeper Arnold who also did well to collect a Mitch Brundle free-kick from the top right hand corner of his goal when a goal looked certain.
Two minutes later Iron's best chance of the game came when substitute Michael Cheek chased a loose ball into the visitors' area, beat and rounded keeper Arnold only to see his acute right angled shot heading into the net just cleared off the line by Clough.
The Iron kept up the pressure on the visitors' struggling defence and on 77 minute the industrious Brundle, having one of his best games for the club, saw his first time header from an Isaac free-kick hit the bar and rebound to be kicked clear by a grateful visiting defence.
By now the visitors had made their three substitutes and were playing with five forwards in a bid to snatch a late winner but the Iron defence, expertly marshalled by Matt Fry and Mark Phillips, deservedly held out.
There was almost late drama in the game when first Akinola and then Cheek forged into the visitors' area with two possible scoring chances only to be halted by some last minute desperate defending.
The visitors' manager Ady Pennock admitted after the game that their chances of winning the championship had finally gone adding: "We knew it would be tough coming here because they are a well organised, well drilled side that defends well but we failed to break them down and that is credit to them but it is a disappointing result for us."
Braintree Town: King; Long, Phillips, Fry, Habergham; Isaac, Davis (Sparkes 88), Woodyard, Brundle; Akinola, Marks (Cheek 62). Unused subs: Miles, Powell, Gardner. Attendance: 740. Referee: Brett Huxtable.
Next up for Iron are three successive away Vanarama National League trips at Grimsby Town this coming Tuesday evening, 12th April, at Gateshead on Saturday, 16th April and at Wrexham on 23rd April before we complete our Vanarama National League campaign at home to Altrincham on Saturday 30th April.

Danny Cowley looks forward to Saturday
Iron slipped to their third successive defeat going down by two goals to nil at Barrow on Tuesday evening.
After that long, long journey up the M6 mid-week, Braintree suffered the worst possible start going behind as early as the seventh minute.
A ball in from the right was not controlled by Iron keeper Tom King and the loose ball squirmed free to Jason Walker to score from close range.
Chasing the game, Iron pushed players forward, with Kenny Davis shot mid-way through the second half the closest the visitors came to levelling up.
But the task became more difficult when Barrow's Andy Cook took advantage of gaps at the back of the Braintree defence with nine minutes remaining breaking forward before driving his effort past King.
After the game Iron Manager Danny Cowley was realistic: "We've not made it any easier for ourselves conceding early against what I felt was a very good Barrow side. We had a go second half but got caught on the break late on so we move on and look forward to Saturday."
Team: King, Long, Phillips, Isaac (Sparkes 71), Habergham, Akinola, Fry, Marks (Cheek 63), Davis (Powell 86), Woodyard, Brundle. Un-used substitutes: Miles and Edgar. Gate: 1,039
Next up for Iron is the visit of second-placed Forest Green Rovers to the Cressing Road Stadium this coming Saturday, 9th April, with kick-off at 3pm.

featuring the Vanarama National League Promotion Final
The National League (in association with sponsors Vanarama) has released details of ticket information for their annual flagship final at Wembley Stadium connected by EE which will kick off at 4pm on Sunday 15th May 2016.
This year ALL ticket sales will be handled directly by Wembley Stadium and will be available for the first time with an option for 'Print at Home' (PAH).
Tickets will ONLY be available to purchase on-line and are priced as follows:

EARLY BIRD - up to and including 31st March:
Adults: 20
Seniors (Over 60): 10
Under 16: FREE **
(** 1 free U16 ticket can be ordered for each ticket sold at Adult or Senior price).
Additional tickets for Under 16 over the above allowance can be purchased at 5 each.
Early Bird sales are made even more attractive as no booking fee is charged.
Please be advised no ticket is refundable once purchased.
Disabled seated allocation is available directly through Wembley Stadium and details are also available on-line.

GENERAL ADMISSION SALE - date available to be announced:
Category 1: 41 (no concessions)
Category 2: 36 and 18 (Under 16's)
These ticket sales will be subject to a booking fee.
For both General Admission and Early Bird sales, postage will be charged at:
2.50 per order or 1 for all PAH sales.

Note: Early Bird tickets will NOT be available to purchasers either by post or available via PAH until the two competing finalist clubs are confirmed. This will allow for seated allocation to be made in blocks for any group of supporters of a club wishing to be in the same area.
In order for this to be offered, when on-line transactions are made the purchaser will be required to nominate which National League member club they align themselves to or they may indicate a 'No Preference' option.
Supporters of the two clubs reaching the Promotion Final will be allocated their tickets for the correct area of the stadium allotted to each finalist club.


Saturday 4 February, 3pm
Buildbase FA Trophy 3rd Round

Saturday 11 February, 3pm

Tuesday 14 February, 7.45pm
Eastleigh (Away)

Saturday 18 February, 3pm
Macclesfield Town (Away)