John Sheridan is back at Chesterfield and the Proact — and he certainly has a job on his hands.
The previous manager, Martin Allen, was called in as a footballing firefighter and it’s fair to say our returning manager has a similar reputation.
John has generally left teams in better positions than he’s found them, having performed what was called a “Shezzarection” at Oldham twice, plus at Fleetwood and Newport County, saving them all from the drop in Leagues One and Two respectively.
He had his best and longest managerial spell with Chesterfield at the Proact, winning two trophies but sadly ending with relegation from League One.
In his tenure at Plymouth he took the Pilgrims from the bottom of League Two to a play-off semi-final, however probably his lowest point was at Notts County, where he received a five-match touchline ban for ranting at the fourth official and departed the club not long afterwards.
There are going to be more interesting times between now and the end of season. If anyone can turn things around, hopefully he’s the right man — although optimistic supporters have thought that about the previous three managers.
To stay afloat in this division Chesterfield need wins, the 3-3 draw on Saturday was a great comeback but still not enough. We have four league victories so far this season at a win rate of 14%, which is equally the worst in the division, a sobering thought.
To stay up, The Blues will need to register another eight or nine wins out of 18 league games to get to 50 points; a win rate as a high as 50% may be required for the rest of the season... a daunting task.
Last time John was here he won 39.38% of games and has even better stats than that at Fleetwood and during one of his spells at Oldham.
So, it’s a case of hoping for the best and also thanking John Pemberton for turning round his three games in charge by changing formations and getting draws from positions where the side had gone behind
The main problem is that with over half the season now gone, no-one watching Chesterfield can decide on our best 11, with most fans agreeing that Sheridan will have to bring in four or five quality players quickly, one of whom must be a goalscorer, or we could be facing the end of the club as we know it.
As for the scenes at the very last minute at the Ebbsfleet game, if the FA are to punish Chesterfield surely the best thing they could do is force the club to put up a perimeter fence round the pitch to stop it happening again. They have them at other grounds, so why not ours?