Chesterfield: Paul Cook’s men carry on top six bid with trip to local rivals Barnsley

Paul Cook
Paul Cook

Spireites will be hoping to take another step towards a top six finish at Oakwell tomorrow.

With the four sides between Chesterfield and 11th placed Barnsley all playing away from home, Paul Cook’s side have an outstanding opportunity to make a giant stride towards a season’s extension.

However ex-Spireite Lee Johnson’s Reds, with fellow former Proact staff Tommy Wright and Mark Crossley in the technical area, will be determined to taste victory to rekindle their top six aspirations after back to back defeats.

Chesterfield have avoided defeat in their last four league games with Barnsley, the win earlier this season following on from three draws; another draw will be considered a decent result by the vast majority of Blues’ connections.

Neither of the scorers in last November’s 2-1 Chesterfield win will be involved. Eoin Doyle scored a brace for the North Derbyshire side, he’s now at Cardiff City whilst Keith Treacy bagged his only Barnsley goal late on in that game. He was released by the Reds in January.

Cook has a full outfield contingent to select from but it’s unlikely that he’ll make significant changes to the side that played some sublime football against Crewe on Monday but managed only a 1-0 win.

The only area the manager may consider tinkering with is whether to continue with the inexperienced Gboly Ariyibi, who had a decent game against Alex before succumbing to cramp. Dan Gardner or Ritchie Humphreys would be potential replacements for the American born flying winger, but the chances are that the 20 year old will be given the chance to shine from the start.

Ariyibi is one of only two of Monday’s starting eleven not yet to have tasted promotion, former Mansfield man Sam Clucas being the other. Cook’s squad has promotion and championships galore in their lockers.

Ian Evatt, Gary Roberts and Drew Talbot can all look back to three promotions whilst two step ups have been experienced by Tommy Lee, Sam Hird and Sam Morsy, so knowing how to finish off the job is in plentiful supply in the Spireites dressing room.