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Spireites Yth 0-0 Sheff Weds Yth

13 July 2012

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Chesterfield's youth team began their pre-season impressively after an injury-ravaged side held Sheffield Wednesday U18s to a goalless draw.

With a number of players missing, manager Dave Bentley could only name two substitutes on the bench, but the team battled well against a physical Wednesday side, with midfielder Josh Scully and goalkeeper Cameron Mason impressing for the Spireites.

Striker Joe Mathers was unavailable through illness and defender Regan Eldridge, midfielder Cormac Noel and goalkeeper Josh Barrington were all injured, leaving the Spireites short on numbers but they made a  quick start to the game.

The first real chance of the game came from a set- piece in the fourth minute after Chesterfield won a free-kick in a dangerous position. Midfielder Ben Partridge fired the ball towards the top corner of the net, only for Wednesday keeper Joe Wildsmith to make a smart save.

The Spireites went close again in the ninth minute after striker Bradley Bowland found himself through one-on-one with the keeper, only to see his shot deflected for a corner after a fantastic last-ditch tackle.

The away team then took the initiative in the first-half with Nick Hague and Hayden White controlling the midfield. They should have taken the lead inside 15 minutes when Hague saw his header cleared off the line, moments before the pacy White missed an open goal after good work.

The match was really open as both sides were using possession well and creating chances in the final third, keeping both defences busy. The away side nearly took the lead before half-time as a long-range effort from defender Elias Moses clipped the post.

Both sides made changes at half-time and Chesterfield brought on defender Jamie McNicholas and midfielder Dachi Khutsishvili, a Georgian who is looking to gain a professional contract.

The second-half started well for the Spireites. They were retaining possession and keeping the opposition quiet, with Scully linking up well with his team-mates.

Despite the match being a pre-season friendly, neither team was holding back and the tackles were flying in as the game turned into a battle in midfield.

Just past the hour mark, Mason made a fantastic save to deny striker Roy Rudonja after the ball seemed to be heading into the top corner of the net. The effort was tipped wide and Rudonia was given a round of applause from the onlookers.

Amongst those present at the game was Chesterfield boss John Sheridan and his backroom staff who were taking a closer look at the youth side and must have been impressed as the Spireites were playing well.

In the final third of the game there were few clear-cut chances as both teams were defending well and keeping the strikers quiet as the midfield battle continued.

Defender Jack Broadhead thought he had won the game late on for the home side after a corner from Scully evaded everybody in the box. Broadhead connected well with a volley but the ball went just over the bar.

Bentley's side had to soak up the pressure late in the game as Wednesday kept on attacking but the Blues held out and Bentley was delighted with his side's performance.

He said "We discussed things yesterday and I was pleased with the players today.

"They seemed to take on board what was said and now we can move on and push forward and it gives us a chance to work on a few things."

The two sides meet again on Wednesday, July 18 as the pre-season campaign continues for Bentley and his players.

Chesterfield: Mason, Slack, Broadhead, Whittaker, Colton, Hewitt, Scully, Brock, Partridge, Fereday, Bowland. Subs: McNicholas, Khutsishvili

Venue: Cylinders Sports Ground at Hasland, kick-off 11am.

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