Proact bouncing as the Spireites shut down the Shots
The Proact Stadium was bouncing once again on Tuesday night as Chesterfield made it a six-point start to the season with a comfortable 3-0 win over Aldershot.
It was an unfamiliar tale in terms of recent history, the Spireites too big, too strong, too well organised and too ruthless against a side trying, but failing to play passing football.
A double for Charlie Carter, including a solo wondergoal, gave Town a 2-0 lead at the break and substitute Marc-Antoine Fortune’s late penalty was the icing on the cake for the majority of the near 5,000 crowd.
The result, coupled with Saturday’s 1-0 victory at Ebbsfleet, put Martin Allen’s men top of the National League.
Chesterfield had a bright start to the game and came agonisingly close to an early goal, Jerome Binnom-Williams’ knock down allowing Gozie Ugwu to control, turn and hammer a half volley past Jake Cole and onto the post.
A minute later, there was nothing to stop Charlie Carter from opening the scoring.
Zavon Hines teased his marker near the corner flag and dug out a cross to the back post with his left foot, Curtis Weston reaching it and showing terrific awareness to backheel it to Carter who drilled the ball under Cole.
The hosts had come out of the traps flying and gave the Shots no time to settle on the ball, forcing errors and snuffing out attacks comfortably in the opening 20 minutes.
One such instance saw Laurence Maguire nip in to intercept a pass before feeding Binnom-Williams through the middle and he in turn found Ugwu whose 14-yard shot was blocked.
There was a let off for the hosts when their offside trap was beaten, albeit in suspicious circumstances, by Shamir Fenelon who went in on goal but failed to trouble Shwan Jalal.
Chesterfield attempted to break from that Aldershot attack but Drew Talbot was poleaxed by Lewis Kinsella, who earned the first yellow of the game.
A short spell of pressure for the visitors was weathered well before a lovely turn on the edge of the box took Hines away from the defence and allowed him to fizz a ball across the area, Ugwu close to getting a touch.
With five minutes left in the half Carter turned on the magic to put his side two up, running from just inside the Shots’ half all the way to the box, where he unleashed a low shot to beat Cole for the second time.
Aldershot should have pulled a goal back inside two minutes of the restart, a ball through the middle somehow finding Matt McClure, who seemed to be put off by the onrushing Jalal and toe poked wide.
Other than that chance, the Spireites continued to shut down their opponents’ attempts to get back into the game and looked comfortable until the midpoint of the half, when the Shots began to assert themselves.
But bar a dropped catch under pressure by Jalal that was quickly cleared by his defence, Town’s goal was rarely troubled.
At the other end, Binnom-Williams curled an effort over the top before he was replaced by Marc Antoine-Fortune, who flashed a header well wide with 15 minutes left from a Carter cross.
Having taken back the momentum, Town went in search of a goal to kill the game off and seconds after referee Peter Gibbons ignored Fortune being hauled back outside and inside the box, Talbot stormed into the area and was felled, earning a spot-kick.
Fortune took it and gave Cole no chance, notching his first goal as a Spireite.
There was still time for Carter to go looking for his hat-trick, a short corner routine and a lucky bounce letting him dash into the Shots’ area only to see his clipped effort deflected onto the bar.
Chesterfield: Jalal, Talbot, Binnon-Williams (Fortune 58), Maguire, Nelson, Evans, Weir, Weston, Carter, Hines (Wedgbury 70), Ugwu (Shaw 82). Not used: Barry, Muggleton.
Aldershot Town: Cole, Bernard, Kinsella, Fowler, Osbourne (Wanadio 73), Gallagher (Rowe 56), Booty, McDonnell, Fenelon (Holman 60), McClure, Rendell. Not used: Berkeley-Agyepong, Smith.
Referee: Peter Gibbons. Assistants: Martin Chester, David Hunt.
Goalscorers: Carter 9, 40, Fortune 81
Yellows: Kinsella 29, Osbourne 49, Wanadio 90
Attendance: 4,930 (161 away)