Chesterfield: Chris Turner rages at Portsmouth after move for Spireites boss Paul Cook

Paul Cook
Paul Cook

Chesterfield chief executive Chris Turner is fuming after the club received an approach from Portsmouth, wishing to speak to Paul Cook regarding their vacant manager’s post.

With Spireites on the verge of booking a place in the play offs, Turner expressed his digust at Pompey’s timing.

He said: I’ve informed Paul of the situation. He’s done a great job for us and I’m not surprised that clubs will be interested in him but the timing of it is questionable.

“Paul is 100% committed to the cause and we’ll make sure it doesn’t interfere with anything to do with our next two matches.”

The visit of champions Bristol City is set to see the Pract sold out and Chesterfield will definitely finish in the top six if Rochdale fail to beat top two hopefuls MK Dons at Spotland, whilst a win for Spireites would make results elsewhere irrelevant.

Robins’ clinched the title that had been theirs in all but maths for several weeks with a home draw with Coventry City last weekend but manager Steve Cotterill won’t want them to switch off. They have three men, keeper Frank Fielding, former Alfreton Town defender Aden Flint and ex-Arsenal defender Luke Ayling who are all ever presents and will want to complete the set in the club’s first Championship side in 60 years, so any hint at resting them would not go down well. Striker Aaron Wilbraham, who’s on 18 league goals, will also want the opportunity to get to 20.

City, who also won the JPT Final this season, are unbeaten in 13 though five of their last eight games have been drawn indicating a slight loss of impetus in a season that’s seen them lose just five times, three of those defeats coming against sides currently in the top six, including Sheffield United’s excellent 3-1 Ashton Gate win on Valentine’s Day.

Cook has no fresh injury worries to contend with after the goalless draw at Oldham Athletic, a seventh clean sheet in the last dozen games. To put that defensive performance into perspective, Spireites had kept only seven clean sheets in the previous 32 league games this season.

With Drew Talbot’s hamstring the only outfield injury, Dan Jones looks set to continue at left back. Cook will almost certainly go with a 4-2-3-1 line up so Dan Gardner, sacrificed when the pitch dictated an early switch to 4-4-2 last week, is expected to start and stay on the pitch a little longer this week, his main contender for the left sided attacking midfield role being Gboly Ariyibi.

Cook has been linked this week to the vacancy at Portsmouth but all sources at the Proact indicate that any such move is unlikely.