Chesterfield succumbed to a 1-0 defeat at the hands of local rivals Mansfield Town, ending their unbeaten start to the season.
The home side began the game brightly, leaving Mansfield struggling to escape their own half. Jimmy Ryan forced Alan Marriot into a spectacular save following the midfielder’s long range effort.
When the atmosphere had settled around the ground, the away side had their first opportunity of the match, with a Jamie McGuire volley that never troubled Tommy Lee. Jay O’Shea then volleyed over the bar, as both teams searched for an early goal.
Several crosses were put into the away side’s box but they failed to reach another member of the Spireites attack. The pick of the chances fell to Eoin Doyle, but he shot straight at Marriot.
With 36 minutes on the clock, Mansfield got the opening goal. A Ben Hutchinson corner was met by Calvin Andrew who’s header went straight past Lee, sending the travelling support into raptures.
The last opportunity of the half was a Sam Morsy header that crashed onto the post, as the Stags surprisingly reached the break in front.
After the restart, the Spireites came out flying. Minutes later, Armand Gnanduillet and Gary McSheffrey were brought on in place of O’Shea and Tendayi Darikwa respectively.
The hosts’ appeals for a penalty were turned down when Morsy went down in the box, then the midfielder was booked by the referee for simulation. The incident seemed to give Chesterfield extra impetus. Gnanduillet had a low shot that was spilled by the Mansfield goalkeeper, but Doyle’s cross that followed was volleyed over by Ritchie Humphreys.
Mansfield’s defence were playing extremely well. The home side just couldn’t find a way through the visiting back four. Shots from distance never troubled Marriot.
The second half was one of frustration for the Spireites, just like the first. Ryan volleyed over once again. An Eoin Doyle shot was then saved superbly by Marriot, as the home side began to think it wasn’t going to be their day.
In added time, the Stags should have had a second, only for Matt Rhead to shoot straight at Lee. This was one of the few chances the visitors’ had throughout the game. Gary Roberts was then awarded a red card for an off the ball incident in the final moments.
Mansfield took an undeserved three points from this local derby, although Chesterfield remain four points clear at the top of the League Two table.