Spireites Defeated by Gillingham.
Chesterfield fell to defeat against Gillingham by a 3-1 scoreline at the Proact Stadium on Saturday afternoon. John Egan, Rory Donnelly and Harry Lennon all netted for the visitors with Rai Simons’s strike unable to make any difference to the final result.
Dean Saunders made a total of five changes for this particular encounter, as Ian Evatt, Sam Morsy, Dan Gardner, Jay O’Shea and Sylvan Ebanks-Blake took the places of Sam Hird, Dion Donohue, Jake Orrell, Armand Gnanduillet and Emmanuel Dieseruvwe.
In the opening moments, a failed clearance fell kindly for Morsy who took one touch before firing high and wide of the post. Moments later, Bradley Dack took up free-kick duties and fired straight towards Tommy Lee who gathered possession with relative ease prior to instigating another early attack for the Spireites.
With 26 minutes on the clock, Gillingham took the lead through Egan’s simple finish into the back of an empty net after Lee’s failed punch fell to the feet of the opposition’s captain. Luke Norris broke free of the defence, only for the striker’s heavy touch to allow Lee to advance and gather possession with his hands on the slide.
Involved once again, Norris fired against the wall with a forceful free-kick before watching a member of the Spireites’ defence clear any remaining danger. On 35 minutes, the Spireites levelled the scoreline after Simons latched onto Morsy’s neat through-ball and fired convincingly past a stranded Stuart Nelson.
Just before the half-time whistle, Dack found himself in a one-on-situation with Lee only to realise that the linesman’s flag was already raised for off-side.
After the break, O’Shea fed a short pass towards the feet of Morsy who struck first-time and was denied in the end by Nelson’s superb diving save to the right-hand side. Nine minutes had been played in the second period when the away side reinstated their lead though Donnelly’s unstoppable header from just inside the area, which Lee was absolutely powerless to stop.
Waiting inside the area, Evatt met a lofted pass and directed his header towards Simons whose volley left much to be desired as it sailed waywardly wide of Nelson’s post. Only 18 minutes of normal time remained when the visitors netted their third and final goal of the evening, as Lennon placed the ball past Lee from close range after showing immensely quick reactions.
As the game entered its closing stages, Ebanks-Blake received a short pass inside the area and took a single touch before firing wide of the post when firmly expected to hit the target. Morsy beat his marker and advanced into the area prior to firing straight at Nelson who pushed the ball to safety, as Gillingham snatched three points from this weekend’s trip to Derbyshire.