Spireites skipper Ian Evatt headed in his first goal of the season to level matters at Bramall Lane but he was disappointed that his side didn’t go on to take the win and clinch fifth spot.
The man who twice won the play-offs with Blackpool said: “We’ll take away credit from our performance, we’ve turned up lots of times in games in recent weeks and we fully deserve to be where we are.”
On his goal he added: “I’ve been saying to the staff that I save my goals for big games, score big goals.
“It was a great ball from Daniel Jones and I managed to get on the end of it. It was a fantastic performance from us and I feel we’re unfortunate not to have won the game.”
Finishing sixth means Spireites face Preston in the play-off semi-finals, on Thursday at home and Sunday away and of their loss at Colchester that cost them a top two spot Evatt added:
“Preston will be disappointed with how it’s ended for them, they’ll travel back on the bus wondering what might have been and they’ll certainly be disappointed to be in the play- offs after so many weeks in the top two.
“But they’re a good side with a good manager that I know well and I know they’ll turn up on Thursday night, they’re a very good team, but we’ll turn up as well, so I’d ask the fans to pack the Proact and then anything can happen.”
Preston hold the unwanted record of appearing in nine play-off competitions but they’ve never gone on to win promotion in this fashion.
The two teams drew a memorable game at Deepdale early in the season with Spireites coming from three down to draw whilst North End’s Joe Garner scored twice in their win at the Proact after Chesterfield had been reduced to ten men after two minutes when Sam Hird was sent- off.
Paul Cook reported no injuries from the game yesterday, so his team for the first leg will be very similar to that which played so well at Bramall Lane with Dan Gardner and Gboly Ariyibi vying for a starting spot.