Chesterfield FC Player of the Year: our six contenders for the award

Chesterfield’s Player of the Year award will be announced after the final game of the National League season (who knows when that will be now).

By Liam Norcliffe
Wednesday, 18th March 2020, 12:55 pm
Updated Wednesday, 18th March 2020, 12:56 pm

The Spireites have been battling relegation zone for the whole campaign but there has been more to cheer from January onwards when John Pemberton came in and the Blues have managed to edge two points clear of the bottom four.

We have chosen six possible contenders for the award which is voted for by Town supporters:

Shwan Jalal

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He started the first seven games of the season as John Sheridan’s number one goalkeeper but lost the shirt to Luke Coddington at the end of August for five matches.

Jalal was back in goal in late September but was replaced by Coddington again two months later.

Unfortunately for Coddington he suffered a serious knee injury in the defeat to Yeovil Town in December and was ruled out for the rest of the campaign.

From January onwards, under new boss Pemberton, Jalal and has pulled off some excellent saves, particularly in the games against Sutton United, Eastleigh and AFC Fylde and has managed three clean sheets in his last nine games.

Chesterfield Player of the Year award - Curtis Weston is a strong contender.

Given Chesterfield have conceded 65 goals - the second worst in the division - it would be hard to see Jalal claiming the award but with eight games still to go (if the season is completed) he could be a late contender if his saves keep Town in the National League.

David Buchanan

The defender started the season in the team but was on the end of a bad tackle against Stockport on August Bank Holiday Monday and was out until November.

Sheridan opted to play Buchanan in central midfield - where he has played before - but Pemberton slotted him straight into his natural position at left-back and he has been at least a 7/10 every week and is ‘Mr Reliable’ for the Blues.

He is a great leader on and off the pitch and has played more than 500 games in his career.

If he had played at left-back all season then he might have been a stronger contender but he will probably miss out.

Curtis Weston

The favourite for the award and rightly so.

No one would have expected this to be the case at the start of the season but he has won Spireites fans over with his all-action displays in the middle of the park and his eye for a spectacular goal.

The 33-year-old has scored six goals this season - including long-range strikes against Chorley, Yeovil Town and of course who can forget THAT thunderbolt winner against Wrexham with just seconds to go.

He runs his socks off for the team and was one of very few who came out of the first half of the season with any credit.

Mike Fondop

The striker joined Chesterfield after leaving Wrexham and is the club’s top scorer with 11 goals in all competitions.

Pemberton described him as “unplayable” in his first game as caretaker manager but he was sent off after the full-time whistle and subsequently was suspended for three matches.

The forward has not been able to force his way back into the side and has not scored since the draw with Solihull Moors on Boxing Day.

If he had continued to find the net then he would have been in with more of a shout.

Tom Denton

A late contender.

The towering striker missed the first 10 games of the season with a knee injury.

His return to the side resulted in an upturn in results but he only started one of Sheridan’s last eight games in charge as he fell out of favour.

But since Pemberton has come in Denton has scored four in his last five games and has eight in total.

Not only that his ability to help out clearing corners and set-pieces is huge.

If Denton continues his current form and goes on to score the goals that keep Chesterfield in the division then he could still be in with a chance.

Nathan Tyson

An even later contender.

The 37-year-old has only been at the club two months since joining on loan from Notts County but his impact has been massive.

He bagged a memorable 23-minute second-half hat-trick against Ebbsfleet United in February, becoming the first-ever Chesterfield player to score a treble after coming on as a substitute.

Tyson has been a constant menace for opposition defences with his pace and his experience is proving vital.

It would be some story if he did take home the award but it is not unthinkable.