Spireites Defeated in Fourth Consecutive Fixture.
Chesterfield fell narrowly to their fourth consecutive defeat against Rochdale at Spotland yesterday afternoon by a 1-0 scoreline, with Michael Rose’s second-half strike ultimately separating the two sides in this fixture.
Spireites boss Paul Cook made three alterations from Tuesday’s defeat against Scunthorpe United, as Ollie Banks, Gary Roberts and Armand Gnanduillet took the places of Jay O’Shea, Mark Duffy and Byron Harrison.
The earliest opportunity of note fell to Rochdale’s Peter Vincenti, as Tom Kennedy’s driven delivery was directed over the crossbar by the midfielder from close range. Sam Clucas drove forwards before crossing straight to the head of Roberts who failed to trouble Josh Lillis with his tame attempt from a matter of yards.
Another header, this time by Gnanduillet who joined the group of players who had already fallen short with similar chances in the first period. Gboly Ariyibi would have been clear in a one-on-one situation with Lillis if only for a poor first touch that frustrated the young winger in a very inviting situation.
Then, in the 40th minute, Stephen Dawson went to ground under a Sam Morsy challenge but the referee opted to signal play to continue rather than award a penalty-kick. On the stroke of half-time, Ian Henderson took matters into his own hands with a lone run that culminated in a low shot that never troubled Tommy Lee who gathered possession with ease.
Immediately after the break, the home side claimed a corner-kick and almost opened the scoring through Vincenti’s volley that went wide of the post from around eight yards. Joe Bunney broke free of the defence and went one-on-one with Lee, only to fail at the final hurdle as the goalkeeper produced a magnificent save near the 18-yard line.
With 65 minutes on the clock, Rochdale took the lead courtesy of Rose’s low free-kick from around 30 yards that made its way through a raft of bodies and into the back of Lee’s net. Moments after going behind in this contest, Cook opted to introduce the experienced O’Shea in place of Ariyibi with the aim of grabbing an all-important equaliser.
As the game became more open due to a more attacking approach from the Spireites, Henderson attempted a through-ball towards Bunney but Clucas managed to perform a timely interception that denied what would have been a goalscoring opportunity. During the four minutes of additional time, Chesterfield came closest to equalising with a Caolan Lavery strike towards the top left-hand corner of the net that Lillis parried with a stunning diving save.