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Maguire: "A good performance and we'll hopefully take it into Sunday"

9 November 2016

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Chesterfield confirmed their place in the knock-out stages of the Checkatrade Trophy at Crewe Alexandra and defender Laurence Maguire was pleased the night went to plan.

Following on from Saturday's FA Cup win at Colchester, Jay O'Shea again got the scoring started with a crisp drive, before Connor Dimaio confirmed the result with a late penalty.

Among the stars of the show, however, were the members of the tight defensive unit, with the back three of captain Ian Evatt, Tom Anderson and Laurence Maguire helping the Spireites to their first clean sheet in close to two months.

"We knew it'd be tough when we first came here," Maguire explained. "The gaffer said before the game that they like to pass it and on a cold Tuesday night in Crewe it's not ideal but we came and got the three points and we're into the next round.

"We've worked a lot on shape with the gaffer recently. The three at the back's helped us, we look more solid defensively and have tightened the gaps in midfield too.

"We needed to stay together. I thought Tom (Anderson) and Evo (Ian Evatt) were excellent again, they were excellent on Saturday and won everything, and they were exactly the same tonight.

"The balls were coming in at us and we had a 20 minute period where they peppered us and put a lot of balls into the box and we headed everything away. It was a good result."

The win comes in the much-maligned Checkatrade Trophy, where there were under a thousand fans at each of the Spireites' three group games. However, Maguire felt pleased that the competition had helped to give him and other up-and-coming players a chance in the first team.
The centre-back commented: "There's been a lot of talk about the Trophy this year with the group stages and not as many fans turning up, but no matter what, it's a football game and you've got to turn up and try and get three points.

"I was buzzing when I got here, when I play for the first team I do get a buzz and I like to play. It's a good cup for young lads because you get your chance, play under the lights and it's good to play on pitches like this.

"We've gone through and it's good for the youngsters. Tonight you've seen Ify (Ofoegbu) come on, he's 16-years-old, Ricky (German), he's 17-years-old. Me, Connor (Dimaio), Rai (Simons); there are a lot of young lads who have played tonight, it was a good performance and we'll hopefully take that into Sunday."

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