Huddersfield have re-called midfielder Chris Atkinson, but what impact will this make on Chesterfield’s charge for the play-offs?
The 20-year-old midfielder scored five goals in 16 appearances for Chesterfield whilst on loan from Huddersfield. He was terrific at making runs into the 18-yard box from midfield, and he was an assured finisher. If you wipe out the goals scored by Atkinson, the Spireites would be four points off the relegation places!
His goal scoring abilities will be missed but the Spireites netted six goals against Hartlepool even without Atko in the side. One thing that Atkinson’s departure will do is open the door for Craig Clay to start more regularly.
Although, the fact that Chesterfield have scored on average a goal every 36 and a half minutes and conceded on average a goal every 110 minutes with the youngster in the X1, suggests that Clay should be a guaranteed starter!
In addition, Danny Whitaker could be given more of an attacking license, as he may take over from Chris Atkinson as the Spireites goal-scoring midfielder. Whitaker scored 15 goals in the season Chesterfield became League Two Champions.
On the other hand, the end of this loan deal could trigger Paul Cook to go with a 4-4-2 formation. At Plymouth Argyle, Plymouth were having the biggest share of the chances, until Cook switched to playing both Marc Richards and Jack Lester up front.
Richards scored the winner in that game, and has been impressive in recent matches, but Jack Lester has handsomely the best strike rate this season and is heavily backed to be involved.
However, the inclusion of Lester is likely to open up games, which cause pose problems, especially on the expansive Proact.
Meanwhile, Scott Boden remains in the equation, and who knows what else could be in store with January around the corner.
The only current Chesterfield player to score more than three goals this season is Jack Lester. I wonder whether Louis Boa Morte, or even Tendayi Darikwa could play as strikers!
By Jonathan Kirby