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Walsall Flashback

11 March 2016

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Ahead of Chesterfield hosting Walsall this weekend we look back at a memorable visit from the Saddlers last season.

The Spireites met Walsall on four different occasions during 2015 with two fixtures in the league before drawing each other in the FA Cup and a replay was needed to decide the winners.

Chesterfield 1-0 Walsall

Chesterfield came into the game on the back of some mixed form. In their last five games they had picked up impressive wins against Fleetwood, MK Dons and Gillingham but had narrowly lost to Coventry and had fell 1-0 away at Peterborough in their most recent game.

As for the Saddlers, they were in poor form only winning one of their last eight league games. In the immediate run-up to their visit to the Proact they had earned consecutive 1-1 draws against MK Dons and Sheffield United.

The Spireites play-off push continued as they managed to grab a narrow victory over Walsall through a Sam Hird goal with just five minutes remaining.

Chesterfield started the better of the sides and created the first opportunity as a Gary Roberts cross went to the back post. Ollie Banks headed towards goal forcing a great reaction save from former Spireite Richard O’Donnell in the Walsall goal. Banks powered home the rebound but the goal was disallowed for pushing.

Banks turned creator for the Spireites next big chance which came early in the second half, after receiving the ball back after a low corner he drove another low cross into the area towards Hird however the midfielder could only drag his shot wide.

Walsall did come close to taking the lead not long after when a looping Ben Purkiss cross was headed towards goal the effort had beaten Tommy Lee however it bounced off the crossbar before Tendayi Darikwa cleared the danger.

The Spireites managed to soak up the visitors' pressure and began to push forward for a winner with ten minutes remaining.

It finally came when Chesterfield corner flew to the back post where it was met by the head of onrushing defender Hird who found the bottom corner to give the Spireites victory with just five minutes remaining.

The victory moved Chesterfield up to 9th in League One and just one victory away from breaking into the play-off places. As for Walsall they fell to 16th in the league but were still relatively clear from the threat of relegation.

The Spireites side that day – Lee, Hird, Evatt, Talbot, Banks, Clucas, Darikwa, Morsy, O’Shea, Roberts, Ryan

Subs: Flatt, Carter, Raglan, Humphreys, Ariyibi, Dieseruvwe, Harrison.

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