PRE-SEASON FRIENDLY: Chesterfield 2 Huddersfield Town 1


A sweetly struck free-kick from Jamie Devitt earned Spireites an impressive 2-1 pre-season friendly win over Championship side Huddersfield Town on Saturday.

Substitute Devitt, who only entered the game minutes before hitting the winner just after the hour mark, fired home from 25 yards to seal a deserved victory after an impressive second half display.

The game had been finally balanced at half time, with former Huddersfield winger Gary Roberts putting Chesterfield ahead on 10 minutes before Danny Ward levelled for the Terriers a minute later.

But Paul Cook’s men showed a greater resolve and desire after the break against a Huddersfield side who made 11 changes and took off a number of their big players, including Vaughan, Ward and Hammill.

The scoreline could have been even more emphatic had Armand Gnanduillett added to his goal against Buxton when he was denied by a top class save by Bennett on 75 minutes.

Boss Paul Cook will no doubt have been delighted by the second half display, which saw Spireites boss the game and look in no danger of conceeding.

The display of Gary Roberts, who looked a constant threat during the early part of the second half, will also add further encouragement that Spireites can go one stage better this season and secure promotion to League One.

It was the Championship side started brightest with Danny Ward heading over in the opening minute after Adam Hammill turned Drew Talbot inside out down the left flank.

Jay O’shea then fired over from a tight angle for Spireites after eight minutes as the home side began to grow in confidence.

Seconds later the lively O’Shea was denied by a brilliant lunging tackle by Jake Carroll just inside the box as the goalmouth seemed to open up.

And Chesterfield’s growing dominance was finally rewarded on 10 minutes when former Terriers winger Gary Roberts found space inside the box to rifle a powerful shot past the diving Smithies.

But the League Two side failed to hold on to their lead for more than a minute after a roaming run by Danny Ward down the right ended with the winger firing past Tommy Lee with the aid of a deflection.

Ward again found plenty of space as he cut inside from the right wing on 16 minutes before scuffing his shot wide of the mark from 22 yards.

The former Swindon Town man was at the heart of the danger again on 20 minutes when he burst down the wing before delivering an inviting cross to lone striker James Vaughan, who saw his effort blocked wide by the alert Sam Hird.

Martin Paterson then tried his luck from distance with no success on 21 minutes as the Yorkshire visitors began to enjoy a good spell.

Gary Roberts, who was Huddersfield’s player of the year in the 2008/09 season , was denied a second goal on 29 minutes after Smithies alertly palmed away his curling free-kick for a corner.

Marc Richards fired just over on 39 minutes following an excellent cross by Jimmy Ryan as Paul Cook’s men began to test once again.

Chesterfield made four changes at the start of the second half while the visitors made 11.

And it was the home side who settled the best and should have opened the scoring on 51 minutes when a self-less pass by Roberts set up summer signing Eoin Doyle.

But the former Hibernian man lacked composure and, despite having time and space, fired a tame shot straight at Bennett from 10 yards out.

Chesterfield made three substitutions on the hour mark with Jamie Devitt one of the players to enter the field.

And he enjoyed an almost instant impact when he curled a neat free-kick from 22 yards past the helpless Ian Bennett to put the home side ahead.

Fellow sub Armand Gnandduillet was the next to test Benett with a well hit effort from all of 25 yards following a good flowing move through central midfield on 73 minutes.

Gnandduillet, who netted last week against Buxton, should then have wrapped the game up two minutes later when he latched on to a long ball over the top and brushed off the challenge of Callum Woods.

But, after rounding Bennett, the tall striker failed to get enough power on his effort allowing the scrambling Bennett to somehow stretch out his left arm and palm the ball to safety.

It was the last of the major action as Chesterfield comfortably hung on for the impressive win.

Chesterfield: Lee, Talbot (Cakin 61 mins), Hird (Brown 45 mins), Cooper, Humphreys (Shaw 60 mins), Ryan (Togwell 45 mins), Morsy (Clifford 60 mins), Darikwa, O’Shea (Doyle 45 mins), Robert (Devitt 60 mins), Richards (Gnanduillet 45 mins).

Huddersfield: Smithies (Bennett 45 mins); Carroll (Smith 45 mins), Wallace (Ridehalgh 45 mins), Lynch (Dixon 45 mins), Hunt (Sinnott 45 mins); Southern (Higginbotham 45 mins), Clayton (Norwood 45 mins); Ward (Scannell 45 mins), Patterson (Crooks 45 mins), Hammill (Carr 45 mins); Vaughan.

Referee: Jason Whiteley (West Yorkshire).

Chesterfield man of the match: Gary Roberts.