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Caldwell: "The signs I have seen recently have been very promising."

24 February 2017

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Chesterfield manager Gary Caldwell said ahead of Oxford United’s visit to the Proact on Saturday (3pm) that he expects his players to pick up from where they left off against Millwall.

Caldwell’s side battled to a 0-0 draw at the Den last Tuesday and the Scot was quick to remind everyone of the form that Millwall were in. 

He said: “After Bury we had a good discussion and I explained that to be a footballer you need more than we gave in the second half.

“And the reaction that I saw (in training) on Monday and then on Tuesday night against Millwall was fantastic.  

“The side had a strong mentality, they were fighting and giving everything they could for the football club to get a fantastic point at a side, that let us not forget, have beaten three Premier League teams this year and haven't conceded a goal at home in 2017, so it was a fantastic point for us.

“I said after the game that it was only a point and that we now have to build on that as we need wins at this moment in time. We have to take that mentality into Saturday and add a bit of quality and that finishing touch that will get us the goals that win us games.” 

Caldwell has this week added Steve Eyre to his coaching staff following the departure of Mal Purchase and it is a decision that he says he had been thinking about for a number of weeks.  

“I thought that we needed help in that department with me, Ritchie [Humphreys] and Dukie [Matt Duke], I think another pair of eyes, another voice, and another opinion was needed,” he said. 

“Steve is somebody who I had met recently at a UEFA Pro License course in Geneva; I spent four days with him where all we did was football; talk football, watch football and watch different sessions. 

“I liked his ideas and I liked his views on the game, I have kept in touch with him since then and I felt that he was the right man to come in and give us that.” 

“I would hope that from my first day I was putting my stamp (on the club), but it doesn't change overnight, you can’t just click your fingers and things will change straight away, it is a slow process and you have to keep working.”

Play-off hopeful’s Oxford travel to the Proact on Saturday and the Scot asserted that while will they will provide another stern challenge for the Spireites, it is one he believes they can overcome. 

He added: “There are no easy games in football, especially in this league, I know it well, every game is a challenge. 

“As I have said before, it doesn't matter who we are playing I believe we can beat every team in this league. Each game is unique, we have to prepare for it and Oxford will be a difficult challenge. 

“We maybe just need that bit of luck; everybody needs that from time to time to get a win. Once we get that I am sure you will see the players confidence and their belief come back.

“It is never easy to play in these circumstances, but the signs I have seen recently have been very promising and it is important that we continue that on Saturday.”

Caldwell also confirmed that the trio of Jon Nolan, Dion Donohue and Ched Evans are all close to returning to action, but that any decision on them playing against Oxford would be made nearer the time. 

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