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We've Got To Close Games Out

25 August 2012

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Chesterfield manager John Sheridan revealed his side have got to learn to close games out, after they surrendered a one-goal advantage to draw 1-1 with local rivals Rotherham at the Proact Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Jordan Bowery gave the Spireites a dream start, when he capitalised on a slip from Millers stopper Scott Shearer to gleefully convert from close range after just two minutes, before Kayode Odejayi hauled the visitors level six minutes after the restart.

Chesterfield were denied a penalty in the dying seconds, when Jack Lester's goalbound effort appeared to strike the flailing arm of Rotherham captain Ian Sharps, but Sheridan's side had to be content to settle for a share of the spoils against their much-fancied neighbours from Yorkshire.

"We got ourselves an advantage and I thought we played quite well," Sheridan told Spireites Player at full-time.

"We created opportunities but it's not about performances, sometimes it's being disciplined, having a bit of know how and seeing a game out. When it was 1-0, we've had good chances to make it 2-0 and then it makes it difficult for them. 

"But they got back in the game a little bit in the second-half and had one or two chances, it was an evenly contested game. When you've got your nose in front, it's about doing the right things and seeing the game out."

It was the second successive 1-1 draw at the Proact Stadium inside just five days and Sheridan will have to negotiate a difficult trip to Priestfield next Saturday as his side face League Two's early pace-setters Gillingham. Martin Allen's side have won all four games this season, three of which have been in the league, but Sheridan is confident if his players continue working hard they will get their first win on the board.

"Gillingham will be very difficult again," he added.

"I've always done alright as a manager when i've took my teams there so hopefully I can keep my record up. I think we need to pick points up now to make up from what I feel we have lost at home. 

"We've drawn two games, but we could have won both of them and I don't think any team has been better than us. But two points from three games is not what we expected, so we've just got to work hard, stay together and i think with the effort they are giving me, our luck will turn.

On-loan Huddersfield youngster Liam Ridehalgh returned as a second-half substitute to make his first appearance back at the club following his loan spell last season, although Craig Westcarr missed out after a family bereavement and after being denied what looked like a clear penalty for handball, Sheridan was disappointed it wasn't spotted by the officials.

"It was a clear penalty, I don't know what these officials see," said Sheridan.

"Everyone has seen it apart from the man who should have seen it - the  linesman - who's 20 yards away. 

"Liam needs football and we needed a left-sided player. Obviously Liam knows us, Huddersfield have helped us out and he can play left-back, left-midfield and left side centre-half so he adds to the squad and he'll help us get some positive results.

"Westy's grandfather passed away, so he asked to miss the game today and you don't stand in the way of anyone when something like that has happened."

You can watch John's interview in full, exclusively on Spireites Player.

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