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Match Previews

Notts County Preview

6 February 2015

Chesterfield begin life after Eoin Doyle with a trip to play a Notts County team out of form but still very much in the thick of the play-off race.

The Spireites are sat fifth in League One but despite their lofty perch are just four points ahead of Saturday's opponents, nine places down the table in fourteenth spot.

The narrow margin covering so many teams illustrates the tight nature of the division, and especially the competition for the play-off spots, and the Spireites will need to continue their recent positive run of results to retain their position.

Form Guide

While the Spireites have tasted league defeat just once since the Bradford City loss in mid-December, the Magpies have contrastingly won just once in the same time period, seeing their play-off push falter.

However, it does of course remain to be seen how manager Paul Cook will fill the goalscoring gap left by the departure of 25-goal man Doyle, but with three strikers brought to the club in the last week of the window the management have increased attacking options at their disposal.

County have netted only three goals in their past seven outings and the Spireites will be hoping their new strike force will be able to exploit a defence that's leaked five goals in their past two matches.

Team News

The Spireites' transfer window squad overhaul may give County hopes of catching their weekend visitors unsettled, and all four of the players brought into the squad on Monday are fit and ready to contend for the squad.

Gary Roberts remains on the sidelines with his hamstring strain, while Dan Gardner will also be missing due to a minor ankle ligament complaint. 

However, Armand Gnanduillet - who missed last Saturday's draw with Doncaster Rovers - is back training and has been passed fit after recovering from an ankle injury picked up in the win over Crawley Town and in other positive injury news goalkeeper Aaron Chapman is now back in full training and is available for squad consideration following ankle surgery.

For the Magpies - who brought in seven players themselves during January - defender Taylor McKenzie is missing, but loan signing Hayden White is looking to return to the starting 11 having missed last weekend's loss at Oldham Athletic.
 
From the Dugout

Speaking ahead of the game, Cook emphasised the close nature of the league table and the competitiveness of all the battling teams.

"Shaun's team had a fantastic start to the season," said Cook.  "But the majority of teams have mirrored each other, just at different times of the season.

"They've all had great runs, good results and also gone five or six games without a win, that's what teams in this league can do.

"There are four points between ourselves and Notts County as we speak. A win for Notts County tomorrow will see them right up with us, while a win for us puts us in a good place."

Cook was looking forward to the contest, and reflected on his opposition manager's challenge to mesh players with differing experience levels.

"Shaun's done a fantastic job," said Cook. "He's got Greg Abbott in there with him who's very experienced. They're a very competitive team Notts County and they've got some very good players and some very good senior players.

"I'm sure over a period of time Shaun's going to integrate those players with the younger players, that's what takes time at clubs and none of us can just hit the ground running.

"We had a great game with them at home, it was a 1-1 result and Roy Carroll was great on the day late on.

"We're looking forward to the game tomorrow, we know we have good support travelling and if we win tomorrow we'll still be in the play-off places and that's a massive thing."

You can follow full match live commentary of the Meadow Lane match-up on Spireites Player, follow minute-by-minute coverage on the club's Twitter feed, or see score updates on Facebook.

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