Leam Richardson says it will take time before the joy of securing a League One play-off spot is felt on a day when Chesterfield lost to champions Bristol City.
The Spireites’ assistant manager was naturally disappointed to have lost the game in front of a packed Proact Stadium - which brought an end to Chesterfield’s seven-game unbeaten run.
But backed the group of players to respond at Bramall Lane against rivals Sheffield United on the last day of the regular season before both teams compete in the play-offs.
He said: “We’re a bit subdued a bit flat because you want to win games. With the standards we feel the lads have got, the management through to the players, we wanted to go unbeaten all the way through to the end of the season and hopefully to Wembley and through that.
“The aim has been touched but we’re disappointed we didn’t win the game. I thought it was a great game, a very tactical one through periods and the goal were quite sloppy on our part but let’s give Bristol City complements - they played well and have depth, knowledge and you can see why they’re champions.”
Defeat for Rochdale meant the Spireites can not be caught in sixth place and will go in to the derby against the Blades looking to claim the bragging rights and in doing so would switch places in the table.
“I couldn’t praise them (players) enough individually, collectively I think they’ve been outstanding during my time here,” he said. “The dressing room is very good, vibrant and the work ethic is different class.
“The lads who do join the dressing room, it doesn’t take them long to realise they have to join the work ethic and application - the standards are high. If they (the players) do make it to the Championship I wouldn’t be surprised and to a man they deserve that.
He added: “I think most people thought there would be some relevance on it (Sheffield United game) for both teams, luckily we’ve both had a good season and it’s put us in a good place.
“It will be a very good game. Hopefully we’ll take a lot of fans and end the regular season very well.”