Blades stopper credits the Spireites and Bramall Lane set-up for his development
Goalkeeper Jake Eastwood says his emergency loan spell with League Two strugglers Chesterfield is exactly what he needed at this stage of his development.
The youngster was signed from Sheffield United in the wake of a set of truly unfortunate set of circumstances in the goalkeeping department at the Proact.
Tommy Lee was forced to retire at the age of 31 due to chronic pain from a shoulder problem and Joe Anyon then broke his arm in a Checkatrade Trophy game, leaving teenagers Brad Jones and Dylan Parkin as the only stoppers at the club.
Neither have played in the Football League as yet and so Town dipped into the emergency loan market to sign Sheffield Wednesday man Cameron Dawson.
Two games later, he was promptly recalled due to the Owls’ own injury issues.
It’s all worked out quite nicely for Eastwood, however.
The 21-year-old has played in four League Two games and although three have been defeats, he’s enjoying the experience.
“They want to play football. It’s a good environment to be in,” he said.
“I think everyone understands the club shouldn’t be where they are at the bottom of the Football League.
“I’m enjoying it. We’ve had games thick and fast. That’s what I need, game time at a good standard.
“I’ve had to break off from the Under 23s games, so to get first team football has been an unbelievable opportunity for me.”
While a spell with Chesterfield could be beneficial in his bid to become an established professional custodian, Eastwood believes he’s already made big strides since last season’s loan spell with National League North side Gainsborough.
And being part of a successful parent club has also helped.
“That’s been massive for me, working with a winning side that smashed League One and is up near the top of the Championship,” he said.
“I’ve worked with Wardy (goalkeeping coach Darren Ward) now for a number of years and he’s a major part of my development, and the other keepers at Sheffield United, they’re always looking to get better each session.
“It’s a great environment to work in.”