Paul Cook was delighted with what he saw in the comeback 2-2 draw in the FA Cup third round match at Scunthorpe on Tuesday.
Two down at half time, Spireites camped in United’s half after the break, scoring through and Eoin Doyle penalty on 71 minutes before sub Jay O’Shea hit a deserved equaliser on 85 to earn a replay for the right to travel to Derby.
The manager said: “My players are brilliant, I’m so proud of them. I see my lads come in of a morning, doing the gym work, going to training, doing the fitness, doing the nutrition. I know when it gets to later stages of games we are going to keep going. We are fit.
“Good teams score late goals. We only needed to get one to give our supporters a massive lift, and that engaged us then to get home. The only disappointing thing was that we felt we deserved more than we got.”
Cook spoke of the close on 1,700 visiting fans at Glandford Park: “The supporters have big belief in us at the minute, and the second half performance has justified that, they’ll be happy. You represent your club as a manager and you’re always proud of your team no matter what. If I can’t stand up for them then no one can.”
For the time being, it’s back to League matters and Rob Page’s Port Vale visit the Proact on Saturday. Cook will be hoping Jimmy Ryan will be fit whilst midweek scorer Jay O’Shea and the hugely impressive Dan Gardner will both home their excellent sub cameos caught the manager’s attention.
Vale sit immediately below Spireites having played a game more and even though leading scorer Tom Pope remains sidelined, they’ve found some form and will prove to be formidable opponents.
The day has been deemed ‘Ernie Moss Day’ as a tribute to Spireites’ all time record goalscorer who also helped Vale win promotion in 1983. The former striker was diagnosed with a rare form of dementia known as Pick’s Disease and the day will help to raise awareness of the illness.