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Match Previews

Walsall FA Cup Second Round Preview

4 December 2015

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The Spireites seek sanctuary from recent league form in the FA Cup with the visit of Walsall in the second round with caretaker manager Mark Smith in charge for the tie.

Tickets remain available and can be bought on matchday at the Proact, at the reduced price of just £12 for adults and £6 for concessions.

Team News

The Spireites caretaker revealed in his pre-match press conference that he had already picked his team and let the players know his squad for Saturday to allow them to prepare mentally.

Smith hinted that he would be looking to rely on experience for his first game in charge, though he will be without left-back Dan Jones who cruelly fractured an ankle in last weekend's Swindon Town defeat.

Walsall played in midweek, winning their first match of the post-Dean Smith era with a 3-1 win at Shrewsbury, but were hit with the setback of marksman Tom Bradshaw being substituted early due to injury - the 23-year-old unlikely to line-up against the Spireites on Saturday.

There was better news in midfield for the Saddlers with the influential Sam Mantom back on the bench at the New Meadow and in contention to play at the Proact having been missing since - coincidentally - getting injured in the match with Chesterfield in October.

Form Guide

Four successive losses cost Dean Saunders his job after the defeat to Swindon last time out, the Spireites' last win coming in the FA Cup with the 4-1 win at FC United or Manchester on October 9.

Walsall sit third in the Sky Bet League 1 and reached the second round of the Cup with a 2-0 home win against Fleetwood Town. 

However, they have suffered defeat at the hands of the Spireites already this year when Sylvan Ebanks-Blake and Ian Evatt goals guided the visitors to a 2-1 win at the Banks's Stadium seven weeks ago.

The Saddlers have the best away record in the division with six wins already this term, and with only one defeat away from the Banks's they will head to Derbyshire without fear and hoping to put their name in the hat for the all-important third round draw.

From the Dugout

Speaking in his first press conference as caretaker, Smith went the through the situation and how he's approached his first week in charge.

He said: "It's never a nice time coming in because that means someone's lost their job, but in reality you know these things can happen, it had crossed my mind that something like this might and now it's come to fruition.

"We seem to have won games in blocks and then lost games in blocks, which doesn't help because everyone just remembers the last three or four losses and not the ones before that.

"I didn't want to go in and rip everything up, I know they're a good bunch as I worked with them last season. I know they're good and you can believe me as I've worked with other squads who aren't the best in the world.

"I've got a little bit of respect in there and I've spoken to a few of the senior players to ask them what the mood was like and they said the confidence was down."

With Walsall also mangerless for the FA Cup fixture, coach John Ward has moved to the head of the Saddlers' ship, moving into the position at a steady club progressing well.

"John's been about and he's someone I know who's got a lot of experience. You look at the good job Dean Smith did there and they're a young team with a lot of players coming through.

"You hope that the manager leaving might have a negative effect on them. That said, we're just focusing on ourselves and our players will be ready, prepared and will know what's expected from them."

For those who are unable to make it to the game then we've got everything covered for you:

- Live full match commentary on Spireites PlayerHD
- Live minute-by-minute tweets on the club's Twitter feed @chesterfieldfc
- Score updates and exclusive images on Facebook and Instagram
- Full post-match reports and interviews

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