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Match Previews

Chesterfield v Bristol City Preview

24 April 2015

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The Spireites come home to the Proact for their final scheduled game of the season, and what a day in prospect as the supporters #MakeItBlue for the match with champions Bristol City.

Spireites fans are encouraged to wear blue to the match to celebrate the club's achievements in League One this season, and there will also be a card display in the Kop to welcome the players out from the tunnel for the match.

And all that comes before a crucial match of football - the Spireites having play-off qualification in their own hands, knowing that a win over the champions will seal their place in the end of season top six. 

Team News

For the Spireites, central defender Sam Hird comes back into first team selection after a slight thigh strain removed him from it for last week's draw at Oldham Athletic as a precaution. Charlie Raglan looks set to make way for Hird in the centre back pairing.

Manager Paul Cook otherwise has no fresh injury concerns ahead of the match, with only Drew Talbot and Aaron Chapman remaining in the treatment room.

Champions Bristol City have just one injury worry as they travel north to Derbyshire for their final away match of the season backed by a large contingent of bouncing Robins fans.

However, City manager Steve Cotterill would not identify his injury concern, cryptically telling Bristol City Player: “One player hasn’t trained all week.” 

Form Guide

Chesterfield's play-off qualification could have been confirmed midweek had Rochdale not beaten Leyton Orient, but the Spotland club's 1-0 win closes the gap to the Spireites to five points - meaning that Chesterfield need to match the Dale's result on Saturday to sew up their top-six finish.

It makes for a mouthwatering showdown with Bristol City at the Proact Stadium, only heightened by the revenge in the air following the last-minute 3-2 defeat the Spireites suffered at Ashton Gate in October.

For Bristol City the season could not have gone much better, the Johnstone's Paint Trophy already pocketed, the squad added the Sky Bet League 1 title to their honours list last week with their goal-less draw with Coventry City.

As if their championship title wasn't enough, the Robins come into the game with a 14 match unbeaten run to protect, Cotterill saying pre-match that his aim is to stretch the run to 16 before the season is out and leave the division with a bang.

From the Dugout

Despite his side's five point play-off cushion, the Spireites manager is well-aware that his side have some distance to go before his side are confirmed in the top six.

"There's a lot of work still to do," said Cook. "Like we said to the players this morning, you don't look for other people for help. The most important thing if you want to get something is that you go and achieve it.

"We've got a tough game tomorrow against a very strong Bristol City side. They've had a fantastic season and they are the best team in the league in my opinion.

"Consistently they've won games, consistently they've not just played good football but they can mix the game up really well. Since Steve took over the club they've been on an upward trajectory and that's a great credit to Steve and his staff."

Cook also knows the scale of Saturday's match, and it's a contest he is excited about being a part of.

He said: "Tomorrow's a great day, we've got a lot of players playing well and we fancy our chances against a strong side. We're not disrespectful - and we think it's going to be a good game tomorrow.

"We want to play, they want to play - Bristol City don't go away from home and set up other than to win games. Normally when you have two teams set up to win the game it makes for a good spectacle.

"I think it will be a great game, it will be played in a good spirit in front of a full house and for all League One teams it doesn't get any better."

For those unable to pack the Proact and #MakeItBlue on Saturday there are still a variety of ways to follow the action. Live full match commentary can be heard on Spireites Player, minute-by-minute tweets can be followed on Twitter and viewed on this official website's Spireites Wall.

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