Chesterfield 'not at the races' in second-half collapse at Woking, says boss James Rowe

James Rowe said the ‘best team won’ as Chesterfield suffered their first defeat of the season at Woking.

Tuesday, 28th September 2021, 11:08 pm
Chesterfield manager James Rowe.

Saidou Khan scored a stunning long-range strike from inside his own half to give the Spireites the lead early on.

But Town conceded three times in the second-half, including two late goals, as they fell to a deserved loss.

"I need to reflect on the manner of the defeat tonight, to concede three in a half is not acceptable,” Rowe said.

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"Physically they beat us up, they won it physically, not technically.

"In the second-half we were nowhere near the races, we did not get going.

"We have set our standards higher than that, in the second-half we did not meet those standards and when you come away from home in the National League and you are not at the races physically, you get unstuck.

“What comes as a surprise is that we made subs on Saturday in a good position and you concede two. And you make subs again today and you concede another two so I need some reflection time. I need to think about what has happened there, it was not good enough.

"We have got to take our medicine because the best team won."

Rowe said Khan’s opener was ‘unbelievable’ and that he was the Blues’ best player on the night.

“In the first quarter of the game we were excellent, it was a good away performance, got the goal,” Rowe explained.

"They (Woking) stepped it up with five minutes to go, created a bit of pressure and we did not deal with first and second contacts well enough.

"We got in at half-time unscathed, probably deserved, I think, I know they hit the crossbar but as the away side I think we had done enough to be in the lead at half-time.

"We never really regained our momentum again, we did not make enough passes, our shape looked a bit off on turnover as well, we were not so good on the second barrier tonight.

"But, having said that, at the start of the second-half I was on the bench thinking not a lot has happened in that period apart from they had a lot of set-plays.”

Tahvon Campbell took advantage of an error by Jamie Grimes to equalise before grabbing his second on 87 minutes. Inih Effiong added a third two minutes later.

Rowe added: "It was a really bad mistake for their first goal, you can’t let it bounce twice and then get bullied like that. Scott (Loach) has got to do better with the shot but he has kept us in it in the first-half so I am not going to single him out, he has made some great saves in the last two weeks.

"What is disappointing is the second goal was a gamble again from Calvin (Miller) but I’m not going to throw him under the bus because there were two more chances to clear it.

"It is disappointing defensively, however, the momentum was with Woking before the 85th minute goal.

"We need to do better with the ball to have passages of play away from home. Players were playing too long, they don’t train like that so I don’t know why they were doing it today.”