Chesterfield FC v Rochdale Report
22nd January 2014
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Chesterfield drew 2-2 with Rochdale after surrendering a two-goal lead in added time.
 
Gary Roberts put the home side in front with a calm finish under Rochdale goalkeeper Josh Lillis, before Marc Richards doubled the advantage with only 20 minutes of normal time left to play.
 
The away side were awarded a penalty as the game entered injury time, and as a result Richards was sent off. Ian Henderson converted from the spot to inject late life into the contest. Peter Vincenti was the hero, as the substitute rescued a point for the Dale after a headed goal at the front-post.
 
Spireites boss Paul Cook named an unchanged side for the visit of Rochdale from the 3-0 defeat at Southend last Saturday.
 
In the opening moments, Ollie Banks had a glancing header that just skipped wide of the post following a lofted pass from Roberts. Henderson then forced a strong one-handed save from Chesterfield goalkeeper Tommy Lee.
 
With 14 minutes on the clock, the visitors’ Rhys Bennett replaced the injured Oliver Lancashire. Jimmy Ryan attempted a speculative effort from distance that never troubled Lillis.
 
As the game progressed, the end-to-end style of play ensued although neither side could muster up a clear-cut chance at goal. Suddenly, the home side broke the deadlock. Roberts latched onto a through-ball from Jay O’Shea to give the Spireites a valuable first-half lead.
 
Joe Bunney was bearing down on goal in the last seconds of the first period, but Nathan Smith was there to stop him in his path.
 
Either side made an alteration at the break, with the hosts’ Sam Hird replacing Drew Talbot and Vincenti taking to the field in place of Graham Cummins.
 
The second half began at a slow pace, with the emphasis from a Chesterfield point of view on not being too expansive. Banks found space inside the opposition area, but he was immediately closed down by Matt Done.
 
Henderson’s effort from distance deflected against Scott Hogan and out for a Chesterfield goal-kick. With 24 minutes left to play, Tendayi Darikwa took to the field in place of Ian Evatt.
 
Seconds had passed after the substitution when Roberts went through the Dale defence, only for a goal-mouth scramble to occur until the ball found Richards, who finished with ease at the back-post to give the home side a two-goal cushion.
 
On 72 minutes, George Donnelly replaced Matthew Lund. Five minutes later, Armand Gnanduillet entered proceedings at the expense of Banks.
 
A lull in the game followed, with limited opportunities for both sides. It was then announced that there would be three minutes of additional time.
 
The Dale were awarded a penalty as a result of a Richards hand-ball, and as a consequence the striker was shown a red card. Henderson stepped up and rifled the ball into the top left-hand corner of the net.
 
Seconds had passed before Rochdale netted a late equaliser, courtesy of an emphatic Vincenti header, to send disappointment rushing through the Chesterfield support.
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