Signs of improvement for Chesterfield FC but when will the winless streak end?
Heartache; the word to describe that feeling when Aaron Williams bundled home an excruciating injury-time leveller at Wetherby Road on Saturday afternoon.
When it rains in Chesterfield, it chucks it down in bucket loads.
The Spireites came within touching distance – literally seconds – of a first league win in 16 outings at a high-flying team like Harrogate Town but were so cruelly denied at the last kick of the game.
When will it end?
It doesn’t quite make sense that Town are actually unbeaten since September with six consecutive draws in the National League.
They aren’t victories, but they are an improvement on consecutive defeats, and against some decent opponents too.
Words fail when your luck is as bad as Town’s on Saturday – perhaps it was thanks to a tactical error, but it’s easy to empathise with the team after such a painful blow.
The negative points include not the prettiest of football, a team lightyears away from the quality we used to enjoy, and a struggle to win over 90 minutes.
The positives, however, are that the Blues are picking up points against some of the league’s best, such as Wrexham, Fylde and Harrogate, and they are starting to become a difficult team to beat, evident in their eight-game unbeaten run in all competitions.
Not to mention that they are also managing to score goals every now and then – although it remains a real issue that they can’t score that killer goal, bar the third against Fylde in that FA Cup replay.
Whether fans love him or hate him, it’s undeniable that Martin Allen has got his team competing again; that is, not losing. The goal for him now is to take the squad one step further to be one confident of scoring more than its opponent.
What’s hard for supporters to digest at times is how close yet so far the Spireites have come to finally getting three points on the board – like in the 0-0 against Dover, and of course the 1-1 at Harrogate – and this frustration has built over time to pile pressure on Martin Allen. When a draw at Harrogate would be widely respected, for Chesterfield fans it’s another punch below the belt.
While a third of the season has passed and Town are right above the danger zone, there are still two thirds to play, and so much can happen within that timeframe. This unbeaten streak may only consist of draws, but it could be the foundation for a good run of form if the team continue to make minute improvements.
The game against Havant & Waterlooville on Saturday is the biggest game of the season yet and most certainly a six pointer, considering the Spireites have already played all of the teams around them at the bottom end of the National League table other than Saturday’s visitors.
If a win doesn’t arrive by tea time, then fans will really wonder if it ever will.