The Spireites clicked back into gear with a comprehensive 3-0 Sky Bet League 1 win over Fleetwood Town at the Proact Stadium.
Caolan Lavery marked his return to the starting 11 after half an hour, finishing off a fine move as Tendayi Darikwa and Gboly Ariyibi combined down the right side to find Lavery in space eight yards out to slot home.
Things went from good to better before half time as Ollie Banks's wicked free kick was headed goalwards by Ian Evatt, was well saved but followed up by Sam Hird, netting his first of the season from close range.
In the aftermath of the second goal, Fleetwood's Antoni Sarcevic received two yellow cards in double-quick time, both for dissent, and was given a red card by referee Patrick Miller.
After half time and the Spireites attacking wave became a tsunami, Ariyibi the architect as he surged into the box and set up Sam Morsy, who was all too happy to give the Spireites a third goal with a low strike from ten yards.
Chesterfield returned to the Proact Stadium with the hope of rekindling the play-off form which has seen them win many admirers this campaign, but a stubborn Fleetwood Town arrived in Derbyshire off the back of an impressive 2-1 victory over Notts County.
Following a subdued opening to the contest, the game sparked into life midway through the first period as Sarcevic broke clear of the Spireites midfield, but his caressed effort was saved well by a diving Tommy Lee.
Chesterfield reacted well as the effort appeared to trigger the Spireites’ performance levels as Banks - who retained his place in the starting line-up - carried the ball some distance before he was able to fire goalwards, but a stunning Maxwell fingertip save shifted the shot on its way onto the crossbar.
However, the Spireites did take the lead shortly after Banks’s opportunity as Lavery helped himself to his first goal in front of the home crowd. Substitute Ariyibi - on after ten minutes for the injured Dan Jones - skipped past his man, and was able to tee up the Northern Irishman who calmly rolled the ball into the bottom corner and commence lift off.
Soon after, the Spireites deservedly doubled their lead from a dead ball situation and it was crafted from the man who was at the centre of every attack for the hosts, Banks. The midfielder’s well-placed delivery was met by the head of Evatt, but after he was denied by Maxwell, Hird was on hand to stab the ball home for his first since the last day of last season: again against Fleetwood.
Drama followed the second Spireites’ goal as Sarcevic was given a yellow card for dissent, continued, was given a second and dismissed by referee Patrick Miller, leaving the Cod Army two goals and a man down heading into the break.
Chesterfield resumed their attacking threat immediately in the second half as they continued to trouble Fleetwood’s defence, and it was Hird again who threatened from a set-piece, but this time his headed effort on goal was hooked away on the line by the foot of 'keeper Maxwell.
The Cod Army yet again were struggling to contain the Spireites’ frontline as they narrowly survived another scare, with this time Lavery latching onto a stunning Banks cross field ball, but when Maxwell misjudged the bounce in the Fleetwood goal, it looked to be a simple task for Lavery to pass the ball into an unguarded goal, however the visitor’s skipper Mark Roberts was able to intervene and get the ball clear.
Unfortunately for Fleetwood, they could not do anything moments later to stop the Spireites marching into a three goal lead. A jinking run by Ariyibi enabled the tricky winger to check back and pick out an onrushing Morsy who expertly slotted the ball into the back of the goal from ten yards out.
The confidence was back and flowing through the Chesterfield squad as they looked to add further gloss to the score line, and they perhaps should have when the unplayable Banks threaded Byron Harrison through on goal, but the former Cheltenham striker’s effort was smothered well by Maxwell.
Relief surrounded the Proact at the full-time whistle as Chesterfield put an end to their miserable run, with Paul Cook and his side dragging themselves right back into play-off contention.
Chesterfield: Lee (gk) - Darikwa, Evatt, Hird, Jones (Ariyibi 9’) - Ryan, Morsy (c), Roberts (Harrison 75’), Clucas, Banks - Lavery (O’Shea 75’)
Subs not used: Chapman (gk), Dieseruvwe, Humphreys, Raglan
Fleetwood Town: Maxwell (gk) - McLaughin, Roberts(c), Hughes, Morris - Chicksen, Sarcevic, Ball (Murdcoch 57’), Jordan - Haughton (Evans 79’), McAlinden (Proctor 57’)
Subs not used: Pond, Hunter, Springthorpe
Chesterfield: Lavery 34’, Hird 43’, Morsy 63’
Attendance: 6,497 (112 away fans)