Chesterfield drew 1-1 at home to Wigan Athletic on Wednesday night in Tommy Lee's testimonial match with Jerome Binnom-Williams equalising in the second half.
Chesterfield can draw a lot of positives from their only home pre-season friendly
In the 38th minute, Wigan broke the deadlock after a nice bit of inter-play through their midfield before the ball was whipped in to be met by Will Grigg who headed home, albeit via a deflection.
Chesterfield started brightly, though. Despite not seeing much of the ball in the early stages of the match, the Spireites defended well as a unit and kept the Wigan chances to a minimum by putting their bodies in the way for the majority of Wigan’s chances.
Michael Jacobs had the first meaningful shot for the visitors after 12 minutes but it rolled through to Shwan Jalal and Nick Powell had a shot deflected over in the closing minutes of the first half.
The Spireites weren’t without chances, though, looking to exploit Wigan on the counter. Gozie Ugwu had a shot blocked after 16 minutes and two minutes later Binnom-Williams pulled a 20-yarder just wide of the Wigan goal.
Chesterfield enjoyed some good work down the left hand side through Binnom-Williams, Laurence Maguire and Zavon Hines whilst Ugwu showed off his physical prowess through the middle.
This wasn’t the only bit of action though as tensions rose between Maguire and Powell and saw Maguire knock the ball out of Powell’s hands after what he thought was a shirt pull.
The Spireites came out looking invigorated in the second half and put pressure on Wigan from the whistle. Hines hit one just wide after 48 minutes followed by Charlie Carter’s blocked effort after some nice interplay down the right on 54 minutes.
The Spireites were granted their wish in the 64th minute as Binnom-Williams smashed the ball into the roof of the net for the equaliser.
Chesterfield fans were left on the edge of their seat a couple of times as Wigan pushed and looked dangerous. In the 47th minute, a defensive mix-up saw Powell burst through only to dink the ball wide with no danger to Jalal’s net.
The match was more for the fans than just another pre-season game as it marked Tommy Lee's testimonial.
The keeper, who served the club for ten seasons and made 373 appearances, was able to bid farewell to the fans who have seen him between the sticks over the last decade.
He could not have hoped for a better match, with former Spireites boss Paul Cook returning to the Proact now at the helm of Wigan. After seeing six minutes of play, Lee received a standing ovation from the 2,777 fans as he came off.
Allen’s team now have a trip to Alfreton on Saturday, followed by Matlock away on Monday, before they begin their quest to return to the Football League.
Team: Lee (Jalal 6) (Anyon 86), Barry, Binnom-Williams (Smith 71), Evans, Maguire, Carter (Rowley 79), Weston (Sinnott 81), Ugwu, Hines (Triallist 71), Nelson (Shaw 59), Weir (Wedgbury 71)