Hird hails O’Shea’s starring role for Spireites

Chesterfield vs Port Vale - Drew Talbot and Jay O'Shea at full time - Pic By James Williamson
Chesterfield vs Port Vale - Drew Talbot and Jay O'Shea at full time - Pic By James Williamson

Sam Hird hailed Jay O’Shea as the most creative player in Chesterfield’s changing room, after the substitute played a starring role in the 4-2 win over Port Vale.

O’Shea was introduced at the break, alongside Gboly Ariyibi, and the pair - along with Hird himself and Jamal Campbell-Ryce - scored the goals to clinch an important three points.

For centre-half Hird, O’Shea just showcased what he’s capable of producing.

He said: “Jay O’Shea is in my opinion our most creative player, he creates a lot of goals, assists, he does a lot of work that we notice as players, holds onto the ball brilliantly, gets you a breather at the back, he can draw players in.

“He’s a great player and came on and showed what he can do.

“And when you bring someone as explosive as Gboly on, he’s going to cause problems for teams.”

Hird got on the end of a 60th minute O’Shea free-kick to head home his second goal of the season, and put the Spireites 3-2 up at a crucial time in the game having just conceded.

The centre-half said it was just the tonic his side needed having let Port Vale get back into it.

“It was disappointing for them to score their second - I thought we controlled the second half, it was against the run of play,” he said.

“We could have gone under.

“But even when that second goal went in to make it 2-2, we responded brilliantly, controlled the game again and got another two good goals.

“I’m just happy to get my second goal of the season and help the team out.”

Chesterfield left the field to boos from their own fans at the interval and Hird felt it was a reasonable response from those in the stands.

“After the first half today, they deservedly booed us off.

“But the fans here are good, it doesn’t take much for them to get behind you, whether it’s a good shot or a cross or just having a go.

“They did that second half, got behind us and we scored four good goals.

“The fans needed that as well, at home this season we haven’t been good enough, we haven’t given them enough to cheer about.

“At home we haven’t really showed what we can do on a consistent basis, and I think in the second half we showed what we can do. We’ve got to do that again for the last six games.”

Boss Danny Wilson insisted in his post match interviews that he hadn’t lost his temper after what he called a ‘poor, frustrating first half performance’ and Hird revealed more on what was said behind closed doors at the break.

“He didn’t get angry, but he certainly let us know how important that half was.

“There were a few home truths said in the changing room, said calmly. This half was going to define our season and I think it will.

“We’ve set a target for what we need to stay up. I’m not going to tell you, but we know what we need and hopefully those three points will get us on our way.”

Hird has been particularly impressive of late, barely putting a foot wrong in recent weeks.

He puts his form down to regular football, and playing where he likes playing on the pitch.

He said: “I’m playing regularly in my strongest position.

“When Dean Saunders came in I played the first five games and then broke my rib, and ended up having to play full-back - it just knocks you out of your stride.

“Playing in your regular position and getting those performances under your belt breeds confidence, and at the moment I’m playing with confidence next to young Tom who has been really good since he came in.”