One of the biggest ‘what ifs’ of the season opens up on frustrating time as a Spireite

Picture by Gareth Williams/AHPIX.com; Football; Sky Bet League Two; Barnet v Chesterfield FC; 05/05/2018 KO 15:00; The Hive Stadium; copyright picture; Howard Roe/AHPIX.com; Spireites'Giles Coke challenges Barnet's Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro
Picture by Gareth Williams/AHPIX.com; Football; Sky Bet League Two; Barnet v Chesterfield FC; 05/05/2018 KO 15:00; The Hive Stadium; copyright picture; Howard Roe/AHPIX.com; Spireites'Giles Coke challenges Barnet's Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro

Giles Coke’s Chesterfield career amounted to just 110 minutes of football but he’ll forever be one of the biggest ‘what ifs’ of the 2017/18 season.

The midfielder was signed by Jack Lester 1st February, in part as an answer to the Spireites’ lack of steel in the middle of the park.

But he limped out of his debut, his first taste of competitive football for two years, on 84 minutes.

A subsequent injury derailed him completely until the final day of the season, by which time Town were down.

“It was very frustrating obviously,” he said.

“I went there to try and keep them up and I felt like if I had played, I believe I would definitely have helped.

“I had a bad injury and I was out a long time, so I came back halfway through the season which wasn’t ideal.

“I played my first game and I probably should have come off five minutes earlier – Jack said that as well.

“But I only tweaked my hamstring, it wasn’t a tear.

“I came back from it and started feeling really fit, really good.

“But we had a training game and I went to push off and I tore my calf.

“It’s frustrating but what can I do?”

The 31-year-old, like the man who brought him to the club, has now departed.

Looking back at his short time as a Spireite, he doesn’t blame Lester for the fate the club suffered.

“I definitely feel for him, he’s a really good young manager and it was very difficult.

“I think the players let him down massively.

“He did everything he could and the players just didn’t perform to the ability the manager thought they could, which was a shame.

“A lot of people will blame the manager but players have to look at themselves and ask if they did enough.”