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Spireites Snap Streak With Remarkable MK Dons Win

22 November 2016

In a topsy-turvy thriller, the Spireites took the lead, lost it, came from behind and miraculously won 3-2 to beat MK Dons for their first away win of the year.

After absorbing half an hour of pressure the Spireites took the lead from the spot against the run of play, Jay O'Shea converting for the second time in a week after Reece Mitchell had been fouled by the 'keeper.

Into the second half and Spireites imporved, but were pegged back in unfortunate circumstances when Daniel Powell's saved shot rebounded into the net off his own shins, before minutes later Ryan Colclough's defelcted effort put the hosts ahead.

Spireites were soon level themselves, substitute Kristian Dennis pouncing on a loose ball in the box, before Dan Gardner put the visitors ahead again following stellar Gboly Ariyibi work down the left.

The Dons may have broken the deadlock in under ten minutes had it not been for the Spireites' strong defensive line; Dean Bowditch thought he had beaten the offside trap and rounded Ryan Fulton to place the ball into an empty net, but looked up to see the assistant’s raised flag.

A second chance minutes later had the away side's guard up, a series of failed clearances saw the ball fall to Samir Carruthers, his half volley fizzling just past the post.

Chesterfield were very much boxed into their own half in the early stages of the match, but the Dons had an impatient look to their game. Ben Reeves struck from outside the area and weakly into the hands of Fulton.

With the home side still in domination mode, Powell was the next to try his luck having found space inside the area, the winger struck with his second touch but Fulton pushed it wide.

A freekick proved to be the Spireites' first chance of the game, O’Shea found Tom Anderson who headed goalwards, but David Martin was on hand to collect.

With much of the team upfield for the freekick, the Spireites were left short at the back as Kieran Agard countered, but he was unable to beat Fulton and sent his shot wide.

Ariyibi chased down the ball and launched it to O’Shea who himself played in Mitchell, the young winger looked to round Martin, but was fouled and his side awarded a penalty.

Still yet to miss from the spot for the Spireites, O’Shea (32) stepped up and slotted confidently to the right of Martin to give Chesterfield the lead.

The Spireites had suddenly come alive and sent a long ball forward that was completely ignored by the Dons' defence. Jake Beesley met the bouncing ball and had just an onrushing Martin to beat but the angle was too tight and his attempted lob went wide.

On the attack again, O’Shea cut inside from the right and slipped the ball to Connor Dimaio, the midfielder fired from the edge of the area but it clipped the woodwork as it flashed the wrong side of the post.

Some slick stepovers from O’Shea showed the growth in the confidence the goal had provided Chesterfield with; the Irishman's final move nutmegged a Dons defender and set Mitchell free, but he could only win a corner.

With a minute of the first half remaining Agard found the ball at his feet with his back to goal, he turned and struck first time but his attempt hit the far post.

Despite the defensive shape taken in the dying embers of the first 45, Chesterfield still found men forward on the counter, a deflected ball fell to O’Shea who thwacked it goalwards but it was blocked.

Moments into the second half and Powell was set loose due to a Chesterfield mistake, but thankfully Ian Evatt was on hand to snatch the ball away from his feet.

The Dons went close again when Agard’s cross swerved in towards goal, but Fulton was alert and did well to hold it on his own goal line.

A one-two between Ariyibi and Mitchell saw the pair break free of their markers, Ariyibi thumped the return pass at goal but it was blocked and cleared.

With his first touch of the match Dons substitute Colclough beat the offside trap and at a tight angle looked certain to beat Fulton, but the stopper managed to keep it out once more with another fine save.

The Spireites' defensive resolve was eventually broken when a long ball forward was met by Powell (67), his first strike was saved by Fulton, but it rebounded off the winger and trickled over the line.

Having held the lead for 67 minutes, the Spireites soon went behind, the ball pinballed around the box before Colclough (73) directed it past Fulton.

A substitute of their own pulled it back for Chesterfield, O’Shea’s freekick wasn’t cleared by the Dons' defence and fell at the feet of Dennis (75) who hit the target to level matters.

Determined to win the hard way, Ariyibi ran nearly the full length of the pitch before pulling it back towards Gardner (80), who hammered home from six yards.

The visitors survived a late Dons onslaught and recorded their first league points after a long run of eight straight defeats.

MK Dons: Martin (gk), Baldock, Lewington (c), Walsh, Upson, Carruthers (GC Williams 83'), Reeves (Aneke 83'), Agard (Colclough 60'), Hendry, Powell

Subs not used: Nicholls (gk), Potter, GB Williams, Downing

Chesterfield: Fulton (gk) - Evatt, Anderson, Liddle (c) - Mitchell (Nolan 85'), Donohue, O'Neil, Dimaio - Ariyibi, O'Shea (Dennis 71'), Beesley (Gardner 71')

Subs not used: Allinson (gk), Simons, Maguire, German

Goals:

MK Dons: Powell 67', Colclough 73'

Chesterfield: O'Shea 32' (pen), Dennis 75', Gardner 80'

Attendance: 7,429 (207 Spireites fans)

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