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Caldwell: "We invited pressure on."

18 February 2017

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Chesterfield manager Gary Caldwell, was left frustrated by his team’s second half performance, after Bury overturned a one goal deficit to win 2-1 at the Proact.

All appeared to be going well for the Spireites, who led 1-0 at the interval thanks to Kristian Dennis’ strike. But goals from Andrew Tutte and substitute George Miller sealed the Shakers’ comeback.

Caldwell told Player HD: “We were in total control and should have won with the first half performance, we scored one but could have scored more.

“But in the second half we just didn’t have the right mentality for the game, we didn’t show composure on the ball and we didn’t keep doing what we had been doing in the first half to get us that lead and keep us on the front foot.

“We invited pressure on and I think Bury got what they deserved in the second half.”

When new goalkeeper, Thorsten Stuckmann, saved a second half penalty from Ryan Lowe – after Tom Anderson had been sent off for bringing down Miller – some may have felt that it was going to be Chesterfield’s day.

Caldwell however, wasn’t so sure.

“We had to ride our luck, we had to because we couldn’t stem the tide” he said. “We couldn’t control the ball and get out.

“We had three players up the pitch, and couldn’t hold it up, so I had to change to stop them getting down the sides. I felt that kind of stopped that, but they just kept finding space.

“I think that that’s a mentality thing, it’s not a technical or tactical thing it’s purely a mentality [thing].”

Stuckmann’s inclusion was one of four changes to the side from the 1-1 draw with Gillingham in midweek. With Sam Hird, Dan Jones and Sylvan Ebanks-Blake also returning to the starting XI in place of Lloyd Allinson, Dion Donohue, Reece Mitchell and Jon Nolan respectively. 

The German endured an eventful debut, producing several key saves before his error let in Miller for the winning goal.

But Caldwell is confident that the Spireites’ latest signing can play a big part in the club’s survival bid between now and the end of the season.

On Stuckmann, Caldwell said: “He kept us in the game. 

“He’s a leader, and we’re going to need his experience in the coming games from now until the end of the season.”

Caldwell also reserved praise for Ebanks-Blake, who carried on from where he left off against Gillingham by putting in another impressive performance and claiming an assist for Dennis’ goal.

“He was a real threat for us,” Caldwell said. “Any ball that was up there he contested, held it up for us and let David [Faupala] and Kristian [Dennis] to play off him. 

“I was delighted with him, but he needs to be fitter, you could see that in the second half his physical level dropped. But he’ll keep working and he’s going to be a big player for us.”

The Spireites’ next match is a trip to Millwall on Tuesday, and the manager is urging his players to keep believing as they bid to beat the drop.

“I said to the player’s that we have to take it on the chin,” Caldwell explained. 

“We have to go at them with a different mentality, because if we have that what we had second half we then it doesn’t matter how many games there is to go.

“We have to change quickly to ensure we keep in this hunt.” 

Caldwell also confirmed that both Dion Donohue and Jon Nolan will miss the game at the New Den due to injury.

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