Gary Roberts’ late equaliser ensured Chesterfield remain unbeaten during their pre-season campaign after Matt Derbyshire had put Forest ahead in the first half.
In blistering heat at the Proact Stadium, Chesterfield entertained the Championship outfit in their second home pre-season friendly. After a 2-1 victory over Huddersfield on Saturday, Chesterfield looked to continue their preparations for the new season that starts against Bury in early August.
The Spireites kicked off proceedings and it was them who had the first chance. Sam Togwell turned his marker superbly before placing a ball into Sam Morsy’s path, but the midfielder’s effort went straight into the arms of Forest keeper Dorus De Vries.
Five minutes later, Chesterfield had a chance to take the lead. Jimmy Ryan played the ball to Eoin Doyle’s feet and the Irishman spread the play out wide to Drew Talbot, whose teasing cross was met by Richie Humphreys, but the defender couldn’t steer his shot on target and the ball went over the crossbar.
Forest took the lead on the 17th minute against the run of play. Marcus Tudgay played a beautifully weighted ball through to Derbyshire, who confidently slotted the ball past the onrushing Tommy Lee.
Forest then started to take control of the game. Minutes later, defender Greg Halford blasted an effort from 30 yards that just sailed the wrong side of the post.
Ryan, who scored against Buxton from 25 yards, tried his luck half way through the first half from a similar range, but goalkeeper De Vries was equal to it and palmed the effort away. A minute later, Jamie Devitt’s cross-cum-shot was punched away by the stopper to preserve Forest’s lead.
Forest almost extended their lead, five minutes before half time. Ryan was caught in possession on the 18-yard box, but Jamie Paterson’s effort just curled wide of Lee’s post.
Just minutes before half time, Talbot played in a teasing cross that was just put behind for a corner kick and the resulting set-piece was cleared by a Forest defender.
After a flurry of changes for the Spireites, Tendayi Darikwa, Sam Hird, Jay O’Shea, Gary Roberts and Marc Richards were introduced in the place of Matty Brown, Hendrick Cakin, Togwell, Devitt and Doyle and the side lined up in a 4-2-3-1 formation.
Five minutes after the restart, Chesterfield had an opportunity to equalise. A neat flick through by Richards created an opening for O’Shea, but his effort was saved by De Vries low down.
Moments later, O’Shea received the ball and played it out wide to Humphreys. The defender drilled the ball into the box first time, but Richards’ header sailed over the crossbar.
The Spireites gifted Forest two golden opportunities to extend their lead. A mix up in the defence led to a strike at goal that was cleared off the line by Cooper, and again, seconds later, Roberts’ back-pass fell straight to Tudgay, who rounded Lee, but his effort was superbly blocked on the line by Hird.
Armand Gnanduillet and triallist Hamza Bencherif were introduced, replacing Talbot and Sam Morsy. It was Bencherif who made an instant impact when his dangerous cross was diverted away for a corner kick. The corner, however, failed to trouble the opposition.
After Forest made six changes mid-way through the second half, it was one of those substitutes, Dexter Blackstock, who should have made it two-nil. Darius Henderson played a beautifully-weighted ball into Blackstock’s path, but Cooper recovered, and blocked the ball before he could get his shot away.
With 15 minutes remaining, the Spireites had their best passage of the game. Roberts played an inch-perfect ball through to Gnanduillet, but the striker’s cross was too long for Richards and O’Shea picked the ball up but his effort from the edge of the area was deflected goal-wards by Richards and the ball went agonisingly wide.
A couple of minutes later and Chesterfield finally equalised. After O’Shea played a one-two with Gnanduillet, the Frenchman picked out Roberts on the edge of the box and the midfielder curled a superb effort into the top corner, beating De Vries from 25 yards out to level the scores.
Roberts then started to become instrumental for the Spireites, providing a perfect cross for Gnanduillet, but the striker couldn’t direct his header goal-wards.
With only a minute remaining, O’Shea had a golden chance to win the game for the Spireites, but he hit his effort straight at the goalkeeper.
Chesterfield line up: Tommy Lee (Aaron Chapman), Drew Talbot (Hamza Bencherif), Matty Brown (Sam Hird), Liam Cooper (Jack Broadhead), Ritchie Humphreys (Viljormur Davidsen), Hendrick Cakin (Tendayi Darikwa), Sam Togwell (Jay O’Shea), Sam Morsy (Armand Gnanduillet), Jimmy Ryan (Alex Hewitt), Jamie Devitt (Gary Roberts), Eoin Doyle (Marc Richards)