Chesterfield fell to a 2-0 defeat away at Sky Bet League 2 side Shrewsbury Town in their first loss of pre-season.
Headed goals either side of half time from James Collins and Craig Durrans handed the Shrews a victory against a Spireites side still looking for match sharpness.
From the off, both sides signaled their attacking intent, with Spireites striker Eoin Doyle blazing an effort high and wide when finding space 25-yards from goal.
Ten minutes in, a corner was headed over the bar by Shrewsbury frontman Scott Vernon, before at the other end Dan Gardner drove a long-range shot just wide.
Finding their feet in the game and increasingly moving forwards, Chesterfield’s next chance came when Gary Roberts sent a powerful 20-yarder not far over Jayson Leutwiler’s crossbar.
Just before the half hour mark the hosts came within a whisker of taking the lead when captain Mark Ellis headed a corner goalwards, with only a goal-line clearance from Jay O’Shea keeping the scores even.
A minute later and the Spireites had gone even closer. A looping cross from Gardener found Roberts deep on the far byline. Somehow the winger’s header stayed in play and rebounded off the far post before being cleared into touch. O’Shea’s shot from the resulting corner was well saved by Leutwiler.
Despite the pressure, it was the home side that took the lead after 36 minutes. A left-wing cross from halfway inside the Spireites half found Collins peeling off his man to send a well-directed header past trialist ‘keeper Luke Williams for the game’s opening goal.
Knocked back having fallen behind, Chesterfield took some time to re-establish themselves, though Jimmy Ryan did threaten with a shot before the break.
Shrewsbury rang the changes at the interval, while Spireites manager Paul Cook kept an unchanged line-up to start the second period.
Right back Tendayi Darikwa had the first chance for the visitors in the second half, but his curled effort from the right apex could only catch the top of the goal net on its way over.
The home side were holding their own however, with substitute Liam Lawrence seeing a sharp effort deflect over. From the corner the Spireites fell a further goal behind- Andy Robinson’s ball was met by Durran who found the back of the net with a header from six yards.
The setback prompted a host of substitutes for Chesterfield. Armand Gnanduillet was among those coming on and his header was soon cleared off the line by a Town defender.
At the other end veteran winger Andy Robinson, on trial with Shrewsbury, latched onto a low cross and struck the upright with the ‘keeper well beaten.
The home side continued to threaten, and with less then 15 minutes remaining goalscorer Durran sent a diving header over the bar.
The Spireites lacked cohesion following the spate of substitutions and were unable to pull themselves back into the match in the closing minutes.
Shrewsbury Town: Leutwiler (gk) - Demetriou, Ellis (c), Knight-Percival, Grandison – Vincent, Wesolowski, Goldson, Caton – Collins, Vincent.
Chesterfield: Williams (gk) – Humprheys (Jones 56’), Evatt (c) (Morgan 64’), Cooper (Raglan 70’), Darikwa (Michael 83’) – Morsy (Featherstone 70’), Ryan (Cotton 83’), Roberts (Roco 66’), Gardner, (Hird 56’) O’Shea (Xavi 78’) – Doyle (Gnanduillet 58’).
Shrewsbury Town - Collins 36’, Durran 55’