Chesterfield: Spireites braced for tough test against leaders Walsall

Dean Saunders
Dean Saunders

Chesterfield boss Dean Saunders knows tomorrow’s task will be tough.

The Spireites visit leaders Walsall and the manager said: “They’re a good side that play good football.

Rai Simons

Rai Simons

“They’ve been together for a while and have plenty of energy so there’s no wonder other teams have been looking at their manager Dean Smith.”

The Saddlers, who’ve conceded just six goals in League One this term, saw off previous leaders Burton Albion 2-0 last weekend while Chesterfield continued to search for a first home win since the season’s opening day, losing 3-1 against Gillingham.

Chesterfield are still without Angel Martinez and Byron Harrison, but Saunders said: “Lee Novak is available.

“I considered playing him in the reserves this week (a 1-0 win over Grimsby Town) but decided against it.

“Gboly Ariyibi got back from international duty only at lunchtime on Thursday. I’ll see how he trains on Friday and how his jet-lag is before making a decision on him.

“Rai Simons, who did really well last week, has a bit of a sore heel but should be all right, but players like him - he’s only 19 - need managing properly.”

Saunders has been working in training on trying to stop the goals going in.

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“We’re creating chances,” he said, “We need to convert a few more, but it’s at the other end where we need to tighten up.

“Sam Morsy and Chris Herd are forming a decent partnership in the middle. Chris has played four games and is getting fitter. He sees danger and will be a big player for us if we can keep him fit.”

The Spireites’ biggest issue is at right-back. Liam O’Neil and Drew Talbot have played there, but Sam Hird looks a potential starter.