SPIREITES BLOG: Plenty to take from opening league game
Chesterfield took on newly-promoted Oxford United at the Kassam Stadium in a 1-1 draw on Saturday, and while people may think that it should have been an easy win, there are a few positives to take away from this result.
A plus is that we took a point against a newly-promoted team who were tipped to be one the favourites for another promotion this year.
Even though the U’s have sold their key player Kemar Roofe to Leeds and ex-Spireite Jordan Bowery to Leyton Orient, they have signed a lot of players to replace those outgoings. So a point might not be as bad as you think.
The game produced four full debuts for the away side. Ryan Fulton, Paul McGinn, Jon Nolan and Ched Evans all started and produced good performances. Even though Fulton is likely to be to blame for the first goal, they all fit into the team quite well.
This is a good sign, especially when going into difficult home games against Swindon Town and Walsall.
Nolan was commended for his performance and his link up play with skipper Gary Liddle in the holding midfield role.
However, the biggest positive from the game was the impact from the new striker Evans. Every touch of the ball was jeered by the home fans, but the Welshman silenced critics and Oxford fans alike when he scored a 25-yard free kick to salvage a point for the Blues. It may only be one game but it is a good sample of what we could get this season.
The first game was a decent one, but Chesterfield will have to put in the same kind of performance to beat Swindon and Walsall within the next week. Those next games will show the early progress in the League.