Chesterfield comfortably eased past York City 2-0 to return to the top of League Two with a dominant display at Bootham Crescent.
First half goals from Eoin Doyle and Gary Roberts sealed a vital three points for the Spireites who picked up consecutive wins in the league to move ahead of Scunthorpe United.
Paul Cook kept faith in the same eleven that began against Northampton Town on Saturday and recorded a 3-1 win at a rain-soaked Sixfields.
And with showers throughout the afternoon there were fears the game would be played in similar conditions. But the travelling Spireites needn’t have worried, despite most braving the elements without cover, as they saw their side continue in the same form they finished in against the division’s basement side.
It took less than two minutes for Doyle to open the scoring when he capitalised on a mistake by John McCombe, who was unable to cut out a through ball by Roberts, in the home sides’s defence. The striker curled a shot in to the top corner of the net for his fifth goal of the season. York’s keeper, Nick Pope, was powerless to keep it out.
Chesterfield pinned their opponents into their own half for long spells and even when the ball fell for York, they too often rushed a clearance out of play. The Spireites didn’t give the hosts an inch and they nearly doubled their lead just moments later when Ollie Banks whipped in a dangerous ball from the right to Roberts, but Pope reacted quickly to push the winger’s volley over his own cross bar.
York were slow out of the blocks and it took half an hour for the hosts to get to grips with Chesterfield. Their only effort of the first half came when a long ball forward fell kindly for Lanre Oyebanjo to volley towards the bottom corner but Tommy Lee, in the visitors’ goal, dived low to his right to push the ball to safety.
Dan Gardner has made a big impression since joining the club and he enhanced his reputation further when he made a driving run from his own half to set up the visitors’ second. The former FC Halifax Town man led a lightning breakaway, evaded the desperate challenge of Ben Davies and slipped a precise ball to Roberts to slot past Pope.
It was nothing less than the Spireites deserved as they completely controlled the first 45 minutes when they were at their devastating best.
York were wasteful in possession as they looked to find a way back into the game after the break. Chesterfield were the more menacing and thought they might have had a penalty when sub Marc Richards went over in the box, but the officials were unmoved.
The Minstermen responded and nearly pulled a goal back when Fletcher looped the ball over Lee, when he was first to react to a knock down in the visitors’ area, but Doyle cleared.
Ryan sent a free kick narrowly wide before he showed neat footwork to dance past three York defenders in the corner before he pulled a shot wide, which would have put the icing on the cake late on.
York: Pope 6, Oyebanjo 6 (Hayhurst 55, 6) Davies 5, McGurk 5, Fletcher 5, Penn 6, Carson 5, Lowe 5, McCombe 5, Bowman 5 (Coulson 74), Reed 5. Subs not used: McDonald, Platt, Allan, Ingham, Dickinson.
Spireites: Lee 7, Darikwa 7, Evatt 7, Cooper 7, Humphreys 7, Morsy 7, Ryan 8, Gardner 8 (O’Shea 58, 7), Banks 8 (Richards 60, 7), Roberts 8 (Hird 74), Doyle 8. Subs: Smith, Togwell, Gnanduillet, Dunbavin.
Goals: Doyle, 2,′ Roberts , 39.
Referee: Darren Bond