Lester fears trip to Forest Green may come too soon for talismanic defender

Picture by Gareth Williams/AHPIX.com; Football; Sky Bet League Two; Exeter City v Chesterfield FC; 17/04/2018 KO 19:45; St James Park; copyright picture; Howard Roe/AHPIX.com; Club Captain Ian Evatt takes his place on the bench
Picture by Gareth Williams/AHPIX.com; Football; Sky Bet League Two; Exeter City v Chesterfield FC; 17/04/2018 KO 19:45; St James Park; copyright picture; Howard Roe/AHPIX.com; Club Captain Ian Evatt takes his place on the bench

Jack Lester fears that tomorrow’s do-or-die clash at Forest Green Rovers may come too soon for his talismanic defender.

The Chesterfield boss says centre-half Ian Evatt will travel to Gloucestershire with the squad, for a game that could see Town’s stay in the Football League come to an end or give them a much needed relegation lifeline.

Evatt, 36, returned from a serious knee injury sooner than expected last Saturday against Mansfield, but missed Tuesday’s trip to Exeter.

Lester said: “It might be a little bit too soon for Evo. He’ll travel with us and we’ll see.”

Also travelling with the squad will be a striker who has suffered two serious injuries this season and played just 13 matches.

Gozie Ugwu picked up a thigh tear earlier in the campaign and then damaged his ankle in his attempt to get fit again.

“Gozie has trained this week and has been really bright, he’ll travel with the squad tomorrow,” said Lester.

As for Jordan Sinnott, another who has been missing for months with a serious ankle problem, he needs more time before he’s ready for first team action.

Lester revealed: “There is a game on Tuesday. It’s been a little bit difficult to get these lads games, he will play on Tuesday.

“It’s much needed.

“He’s not got his sharpness back. He’s had some tough training sessions.

“He’s trained for a couple of weeks, that sharpness has not quite returned yet.

“I spoke to him today, he needs games.

“That game on Tuesday will be really useful for a few players, leading into the last three games which - after Saturday - will hopefully be massive.”

The club’s immediate future and plans for next season have been discussed at length this week, after director Ashley Carson was involved in a series of interviews with local media.

Carson revealed the consortium looking to buy the club have identified a director of football but insisted Lester’s job was secure.

The manager says he’s been concentrating entirely on tomorrow’s game and although others may believe relegation is inevitable, the squad still believe they have a chance of avoiding it.

“I’ve not really been too focused on any of this to be honest, I’m just looking to Saturday,” he said.

“We’ve got a big game on Saturday, we’re very capable of winning and that’s where the energy and focus needs to be.

“We know what’s expected.

“I think that expectation has gone for people but it hasn’t gone with us and we’re ready to fight for it.

“If we win this and we’ve got two home games coming up, the world changes.

“We’re fighting for our lives, there’s pressure on Forest Green as well, they can’t lose this game.

“The team that deals with the pressure best will win the game.”