Richards Ends Drought To Win It For The Spireites.
The Spireites were hoping to build on the 2-0 win they had at home against Bristol Rovers in their last game. Gnanduillet failed to make the line-up having picked up a knock, he was replaced by Marc Richards and Lester made way for Darikwa who was making his first start since coming back from his injury. Two former Spireites were in the Oxford line-up, Whing who had a loan spell at the Spireites in their last season at Saltergate and Deane Smalley who helped the Spireites win League 2 in their first season at the B2 Net as it was formerly known.
After withstanding a couple of attacks, the Spireites took an early lead through Marc Richards after only 5 minutes. After Brindley broke down the right and picked Richards out with a lovely low cross, Richards took his chance, hitting a super drive past the keeper.
At last Richards had scored after not finding the net since mid January. It's been a difficult first season for him at the Spireites having been plagued by injuries.
The Spireites kept inviting Oxford on to them by giving away the ball in their own half. Lee made an uncharacteristic mistake when he fumbled a straightforward catch, luckily the defence cleared it. They were under huge pressure with Oxford looking determined to get back on level terms.
Smith went down injured and he managed to get up and started limping off, just has he was walking towards the touchline he got shoved off the pitch by Deane Smalley, he was given a yellow card and very lucky that he didn't get sent off. Smith was replaced by Whitaker which meant that Townsend went back to Left-back his more natural position.
Still Oxford kept attacking Cooper managed to block a shot from Potter. Smalley broke through the visitors defence but was denied by Lee who saved his shot from point blank range.
Hird found O'Shea who ran through the home teams defence before shooting wide after being put through by Hird. The tired looking Darikwa was replaced by Drew Talbot after 66 minutes. Craddock came close to equalising, but his shot was saved by Tommy Lee.
In the 90th minute Brindley was replaced by Randall, he looked absolutely exhausted after running his heart out. The Spireite faithful were in fine voice has they out sang the home teams fans. They could sense that victory was insight and moments later the referee blew his whistle to signal full-time.
My man of the match was Richards after being booed by a very small minority of fans in our last game at the Proact. He answered them by scoring a good goal and he worked really hard for the team again, playing has a lone striker he held the ball up well linking up well with his team mates. If he can stay fit maybe he could drive the Spireites into the play-offs.
Cook Speaking to the official website said:'I'm made up for Marc. Footballers get criticism when things don't go well, that's just the nature of the game we're in. There's no hiding place in football. Today Marc scored, we've won, got a clean sheet there's been a lot of very good performances. It's a happy day today, but tomorrow will be a different day,'
The Spireites travel to Torquay who are going through a really poor spell and after that we welcome back Sheridan has he brings his new team Plymouth to the Proact and hopefully he will get a standing ovation for what he achieved while in charge of the Spireites. It's his first visit to the Proact since he was sacked earlier in the season. Both games are winnable so lets keep the faith and get behind the team.