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Match Previews

PREVIEW: Colchester United

29 December 2017

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The Spireites sign off 2017 with a Sky Bet League Two fixture against Colchester United at the Proact tomorrow (3pm). Here's our match preview........


Supporters should be aware that Tesco Extra, adjacent to the Proact Stadium, will be enforcing a two-hour match day parking restriction.


Supporters can purchase their tickets on the day of the game, with the Proact ticket office being open from 9am until kick off.

A full list of prices can be found here.

Team news

The Spireites will assess the fitness of midfielder Robbie Weir, who had to withdraw from Tuesday’s match with Crewe Alexandra after previously suffering from tonsillitis.

Jack Lester will also be without injury victims Joe Anyon, Bradley Barry, Laurence Maguire, Ian Evatt, Jordan Sinnott, Jordan Flores and Gozie Ugwu for the clash with the U’s.

Colchester meanwhile will check on Kane Vincent-Young and Kyel Reid. Ryan Innis and Doug Loft could also be in contention after returning to training.

Manager – John McGreal

Former Tranmere Rovers and Ipswich Town defender, John McGreal, became Colchester’s permanent manager in May 2016, following the club’s relegation to Sky Bet League Two.

In his first full campaign with the club he guided them to an eighth placed finish, missing out with on the play offs by just two points. He was also named Manager of the Month for January.

So far, this campaign, he’s guided ‘Col U’ to fifth place in League Two, with 39 points from 24 matches. McGreal’s side head to the Proact after a 2-0 win at Crawley Town on Boxing Day, a match that extended their unbeaten run to four games.

One to watch – Sammie Szmodics

After suffering a broken leg in the match with Crewe in March, Colchester attacking midfielder Sammie Szmodics, has enjoyed a very successful campaign with 12 goals and an assist to his name.

His latest strike came in the Boxing Day win at Crawley and manager McGreal has responded to speculation about his future, by declaring that only a big bid will prize him away from the Weston Homes Community Stadium.

Szmodics has been with the club since the age of seven and after rising through the club’s ranks, went on to make his debut for the first team in a 1-1 draw with Bristol City in September 2013.

Head to head

Since first meeting back in 1958, Colchester have had the upper hand in the 61 meetings between the two clubs, with the full record standing as follows: -

Chesterfield – 19 (wins).

Draws - 16.

Colchester - 26 (wins).

Interestingly the last two league encounters at the Proact have produced 12 goals, a 3-3 draw in September 2015 and a 6-0 win for Town back in April of the same year.

A match which saw Gary Roberts and Sam Clucas both score twice, while Dan Gardner and Jimmy Ryan also got on the scoresheet.

From the dugout

Spireites boss Lester, is confident that his team will put in a good performance tomorrow, even though they are missing several first team players.

He said: “We’re very ambitious with the performance that we’re going to put on.

“We’ll be putting a team out that we think can win the game, they’re on a good run but they’re no better than we were two or three weeks ago. So it’ll be a great game and one we’re confident we can be successful in.

“We’re desperate to give the supporters something to cheer, we feel that we’ve done that over the last month or two – we’re so desperate to move this club forward.”

Can't get to the Proact? Fear not you can still follow all the action from the game. 

Across match day we'll have:

- Live commentary, exclusive to the internet, on iFollow.

- Minute-by-minute coverage for the club's Twitter page.

- Updates and images from the club's Facebook and Instagram feeds.

- Stats and reaction across the weekend on the official site.

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