Chesterfield came from two down to earn a replay with a superb show, Eoin Doyle from the penalty spot and sub Jay O’Shea on 85 scoring the visitor’s goals.
Alex Davey hammered in his first senior goal from the second phase of a corner for the Chelsea loaned to register his first ever senior goal.
United grabbed what looked to be a killer second just before the break after Spireites had been dominating, a Ritchie Humphreys error letting in former Blade Lyle Taylor who beat Tommy Lee in the resulting one on one, but Spireites showed they had the spirit.
Spireites went into the cup tie with an unchanged team knowing that the prize for the winning team was worth in the region of £250,000 with the FA win bonus being close on £70,000 of that and a likely full house at Derby County to follow.
That’s a significant amount of money for any League One club, especially in the middle of a transfer window!
Scunthorpe, 2-0 winners here against Spireites in the JPT earlier this season but 4-1 losers at the Proact more recently in the League, a day Eoin Doyle scored one of his two hat-tricks of that week. Since then though, Russ Wilcox has departed and Mark Robins has led the Iron to a nine game unbeaten run that’s comfortably lifted them above the drop zone.
The two have met twice in this competition and it’s a win a piece and Chesterfield entered the contest hoping to make Round Four for only the second time in 60 years, the 1997 semi-final year the only such success in that time. Ex Spireites Gary McSheffrey and Paddy Madden had the first two half chances whilst Eoin Doyle and Armand Gnanduillet both went close as the visitors stepped up their game.
Davey’s goal spurred Chesterfield into action and they went on to enjoy chance after chance; Gnanduillet and Boco racked up multiple efforts that were blocked or saved whilst crosses galore were scrambled away by the under pressure Iron back line.
With half time approaching, Spireites most experienced man erred and his side went in to the break undeservedly two down.
After the break it was one way traffic with Spireites earning 10 second half corners. Roberts was upended for the penalty and he crossed for the leveller in an high intensity 45 that saw Romy Boco and Gnanduillet rack up shot after shot.
Chesterfield had to rely on Lee to save from Madden in stoppage time but losing the game would have been a huge injustice.
Scunthorpe: Slocome, McAllister, Madden, Bishop, Adelakun, Taylor, Boyce, McSheffrey, Williams, Llera, Davey. Subs: Weaver, Nolan, Canavan, Myrie-Williams, Hawkridge, Wootton, Mosanya.
Goals: Davey 19, Taylor 43
Chesterfield: Lee, Darikwa, Hird, Raglan, Clucas, Boco, Morsy, Humphreys, Roberts, Doyle, Gnanduillet. Subs: Wright, Jones, O’Shea, Talbot, Ariyibi, Banks, Gardner.
Goals: Doyle 71 (pen), O’Shea 85
Bookings: Bishop, McSheffrey, Llera (Scunthorpe), Hird, Roberts, Gardner
attendance: 4,307 (1,663 from Chesterfield)