Chesterfield’s youth team signed off 2016 with a 3-0 defeat away to Scunthorpe United, in a match played at Appleby Frodingham FC.
It was a score line which flattered the home side, as the Spireites created a host of chances, but were unable to beat Scunthorpe ‘keeper Adam Kelsey.
Lead coach for the development phase, Dylan Kerr said: “The venue was changed from where it was originally supposed to be played, and when we arrived at Appleby Frodingham there’d been a lot of rain, so the pitch was heavy.
“We tell the lads to go and set the standards when we go out and play and we didn’t start off too well, conceding a very sloppy goal after four minutes, but I was pleased with the character of the players after that, they responded very well.”
“Their ‘keeper made six wonder saves, and we had three shots and headers off target from inside the six yard box.”
The result summed up how things have been going of late, with the team dominating matches but coming away with nothing to show for their efforts, leaving Kerr to feel frustrated.
He said: “You don’t want to sound like a broken record, but the statistics and video of the game have shown that in the first half we created nine chances to score and kill the game but we didn’t take them.
“We went into the dressing room at half time 1-0 down, and we spoke to the players and stated that we need to put the ball into the back of the net. Creating the chances is fantastic, but have you as a player got that ability to put it over the line or is it just hit it and hope for the best?”
Any hopes that the Spireites had of getting back into the game suffered a huge blow when the home side were awarded a penalty early in the second half.
“They went out early and in their first attack of the second half a very soft penalty was given against Dylan Hand,” Kerr said.
“In terms of the laws of the game it was a penalty but the guy went down very easily. Dylan barely touched him, but they got the goal and we were fighting to get back into the game.
“They then got the third goal, which if you look at the stats, our goalkeeper Dylan Parkin hasn’t had a save to make all game yet conceded three goals!”
The result means that the youth team have now gone five matches without a victory, something that the coaching staff want to address when they return to action at home to Oldham Athletic on Saturday, January 14.
Kerr added: “It’s opportunities that we aren’t taking and mistakes which are costing us results.
“It’s not a results orientated business at this level but they’ve got to understand that if they start working together and for each other better they well improve as a team and individually.
“We’ve set them a few home truths to take with them over the Christmas period, we want the lads to go away and enjoy Christmas with their families and friends but when they return on 14th January – which is my 50th birthday – I want them to give me a present of a good performance and that we put the chances that we create into the back of the net.”
Chesterfield: Parkin (gk), Fowler, Lynam, Hand, Ofoegbu, McKenna, Sennott, Rowley, Wakefield, Francis, Darwent.
Subs: Tipping, Phillips, Jones.