chesterfield let a two-goal lead slip.
Spireites followers were distraught that no new faces had arrived ahead of the game.
Having seen David Davis recalled by Wolves ahead of the trip to Preston, a like-for-like midfielder at the very least was expected, but none arrived. For the record, Davis made his first-ever Wolves start in the relegation battle against Blackburn this afternoon alongside another ex Spireite, Jamie O’Hara.
John Sheridan also indicated he was after a striker, but that position remains vacant, meaning the pressure will really be on him if Chesterfield fails to pick up any reward here at Broadhall Way.
Bearing in mind Stevenage’s physical reputation, it came as no surprise that Derek Niven got a start in the heart of midfield. The long-serving Scottish battler has been on the fringes of things this season at Chesterfield and had a loan spell at Northampton in the Autumn, but this sort of game is his forte. His last Spireites start was in the 6-2 hammering at MK Dons shortly after he started in the 1-1 home draw with Stevenage.
Gary Smith, who replaced Graham Westley in charge of Stevenage, selected new face Patrick Agyemang in attack despite the big man’s lack of football. He’s not played any first team football since a loan spell at Millwall in October and not manage 90 minutes since August when he last played for parent club QPR in a Premier League loss at Wigan.
Sporting their green kit, Spireites won the game’s first corner. Mendy and Talbot both got touches on Westcarr’s delivery but they failed to cause consternation.
Byrom and Shroot both received in decent positions, the former hit air and Lee had to intervene from Shroot.
Two more Chesterfield corners showed the attacking intentions of the visitors but the home side defended them well. Westcarr skied one high after a superb Allott tackle and Bowery pass, a really good opening for Spireites.
The visitors took the lead they deserved on 12 minutes. Westcarr’s corner went via Thompson to Talbot who delivered in for TROTMAN to head home his first goal for the club.
Lee saved a low angled effort from Slew ahead of Borough winning their first corner. Mendy headed Byrom’s delivery away.
Chesterfield doubled their lead on 22 minutes with a fine strike. Westcarr headed on for BOWERY wide on the left, he cut inside, seemed to lose the ball but recovered to shoot home, right-footed, from the edge of the box.
Freeman weaved his way around the 18 yard area but was unable to carve out an opening to shoot.
Westcarr received treatment to what looked like a foot problem but he was able to continue. Freeman again caused some problems in the box and Byrom stabbed wide as the hosts stepped up a gear. Westcarr hit wide from distance in a rare Chesterfield raid but at least the clock was running down and the two goal lead was still intact. Trotman was booked for booting the ball away after Thompson fouled. Stevenage brought on Beardsley for Agyemang ahead of the free-kick,
Stevenage were beginning to dominate possession but Lee’s goal was being well protected by the hard-working back four and midfield.
Reid became the host’s final sub, coming on for Freeman.
Borough were fruitless from the second-half’s first corner just shy of the game’s three-quarter mark.
Lee made a terrific diving save to keep a Byrom shot out and the resulting corner was over-hit and wasted by Borough, who had enjoyed the bulk of the post-break play without overly troubling Spireites.
Thompson blocked a Slew cross for a corner and from Byrom’s right sided corner LAIRD got a flick to pull one back with 76 played.
Within a minute the hosts had levelled when REID slotted home at the far-post to level things up and completely transform the match.
The 308 travelling supporters were in stunned silence as their side anxiously waited for the whistle.