First pre-season defeat for under-strength Spireites

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Chesterfield went down to their first pre-season defeat against a determined Alfreton Town side.

Spireites, who were playing at well under full pelt for much of the game, toiled in the first half against a side featuring several triallists, creating the bulk of the chances but John Sheridan’s men rarely looking like taking them.

Jordan Bowery, who’d scored in each of the previous three games, had a trio of decent openings in the first quarter of an hour, the chief one of which brought out a fine save from the keeper. The resulting corner saw Neal Trotman head over.

Marc Richards shot wide from a hit-the-target position and the front men’s early profligacy was punished when Nathan Arnold slid the ball home for the hosts just before the break.

Craig Westcarr, playing wide, saw a cross take a deflection onto the bar as Spireites looked to move up a gear against Nicky Law’s Conference side. Richards blazed an angled free-kick just wide and soon after his partner Bowery made way for Scott Boden, Chesterfield levelled.

Boden burst down the right, picked out Danny Whitaker who placed a long-ranged shot into the far corner to become the 8th different scorer to date. Moments later ex Spireite and manager’s son Josh Law rattled the bar from a set-play.

More changes disrupted play and The Reds took advantage to re-take the lead when an un-named triallist, just on himself, scored from 6 yards.

Jacob Hazel carved out a fine chance but the keeper did well to save and the young sub then pulled a left-footer inches wide to mean Alfreton notched their first win of the summer.

Chesterfield (4-4-2): Lee (O’Donnell 68), Talbot, Trotman (Darikwa HT), Hird, Forbes, Westcarr (Wafula 78), Randall (Allott HT), Togwell (Clay 68), Whitaker (Waddle 72), Bowery (Boden 65), Richards (Hazel 72).

Goal: Arnold 44 (Alfreton), Triallist (Alfreton) 73, Whitaker 67 (Chesterfield)

Attendance: 1013