Chesterfield made three changes from the side beaten at Hereford last Saturday. Gregor Robertson returned in place of Phil Picken, Danny Hall started in place of the suspended Rob Page and Derek Niven came in for Jamie Lowry, who injured a knee in training.
Both sides seemed a little wary of over-committing themselves at the outset, and the first ten minutes passed with little to get excited about. That changed on 12, though, when James fouled Talbot. From the free kick the ball was fed to Allott by Perkins, and his drilled shot was blocked. DANNY HALL reacted first; as the ball broke into space in the Burton area he gathered, took a touch and turned to rifle the ball home with a composure usually seen only from the classiest forwards.
Corbett shot wide from a long throw a minute later, but little was seen from the Brewers as an attacking force. Chesterfield's confidence grew, and their play began to take on an irrepressible quality. Talbot held the ball cannily until McDermott ran on to it, taking it past a defender and firing goalwards on the angle, only to see his shot blocked by Krysiak and Webster at the near post. Corners followed in quick succession and, on 24, The Spireites extended their lead. A Perkins corner came to MARK ALLOTT, some 25 yards out, and his powerful shot clipped the inside of the goalie's right-hand post on its way into the net. That was Mark's fiftieth Football League goal.
On the half-hour Gregor Robertson gave the ball to Walker after slipping on a surface drenched by pre-match rain and was faced with the option of fouling the Burton man, or watching him go on; Robertson elected to bring him down, and was justly yellow-carded. Walker might have pulled the sides level on 32 when Maghoma lifted a fine cross over, but he tried to flick the ball to Lee's left, rather than head back across goal. Since he was stood level with the far post at the time, the ball went harmlessly wide.
Lester turned but shot wide on 41 but, with the visitors apparently lacking the quality to hurt the home side, the rest of the first half was played out in some comfort by The Spireites.
Halftime: 2-0 to Chesterfield.
Attacking the Kop, the second half started with a bang as Drew Talbot unleashed a dipping shot from 25 yards that passed close to Krysiak's right-hand post. McDermott went on a strong run through the middle of the park, leaving several opponents chasing shadows, to find Lester; Jack's measured shot from just inside the area clipped the goalie's left-hand post and ran to safety.
Russell Penn replaced Corbett on 51 as The Brewers sought to get into the game.The Burton goalmouth remained under threat, though; Perkins was fouled on 51 and took the free kick himself, finding Lester's head, some four yards out. Jack's header was fine, but Krysiak flew up to make a great save, pushing the ball over for a corner.
Albion got forward on 62 and Webster's shot slipped through Lee's grasp and onto the post; happily, Lee had taken the sting out of it, and the ball plopped back into the keeper's grateful hands. A minute later Talbot got forward and fired a foot or so wide, as the game began to take on a reckless, "end to end" quality. Harrad replaced the misfiring Walker on 63.
Webster went into the book for a foul on McDermott after 72. Allott followed him into the book four minutes later for a sacrificial foul on Penn, who had broken past him and was poised to attack the penalty area. From the free kick, AARON WEBSTER rifled the ball cleanly past Lee and into the net, from around 25 yards.
The Spireites held their nerve and quickly re-established a two-goal lead. Little's long cross was a tad too long, and Krysiak looked to try to let it go over and out for a goal kick. JACK LESTER had other ideas, though; he controlled the ball on the goal line and, with Krysiak in no-man's land, rounded the keeper before gleefully crashing the ball home from close range.
Burton brought Goodfellow on for Maghoma with ten minutes left, and Boden came on for Derek Niven three minutes after that. Chesterfield took an unassailable lead on 88 with a goal of pleasing quality. The ball was neatly worked by Allott to Lester, on the edge of the Burton box. Jack held it for as long as it took for DREW TALBOT to race into the perfect position for the ball, and passed; Talbot finished the move with a fine shot across the keeper and in.
As the game entered injury time Hall pulled up with what looked like the result of a deadleg, and fouled Pearson on the left-hand edge of Chesterfield's area, rather than let the Burton man past him. The referee showed leniency to Hall, seeing that he could not continue, and Kevin Austin came on. Before the defence could reorganise, McGrath crossed from the free kick and SHAUN HARRAD bundled the ball home to make it 4-2.
With around five extra minutes played, Little and Perkins combined to get the ball to DONAL McDERMOTT, and the tricky Irishman rounded a defender before firing home in fine style to bring the Spireites home by five goals to two, ending a manic last seventeen minutes in which five goals were scored.
Full-time: 5-2 to Chesterfield. The attendance of 4218 included a fine 897 from Burton.