'A tendency to surrender leads in recent weeks': Harrogate Town writer provides insight into Chesterfield's next opponents

Chesterfield will be aiming to bounce back against in-form Harrogate Town on Saturday.

Thursday, 21st November 2019, 3:41 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st November 2019, 3:43 pm
Chesterfield travel to Harrogate Town this Saturday.

The Spireites lost to bottom club Chorley last weekend and face a tough test when they face Simon Weaver's seventh placed team.

The Blues will have a new player in their ranks after the signing of midfielder Liam Shaw on loan from Sheffield WednesdayRhys Howell, who covers Harrogate Town for the Harrogate Advertiser, provides an insight into what Spireites fan can expect from their opponents on Saturday...

How would you assess Harrogate's season so far?

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After a pretty underwhelming start they've really turned things around and they would be just a couple of points shy of top-spot if they hadn't blown a three-goal lead at Bromley last time out. Town fans have got to be happy with how things currently stand given that it appeared as if 'second-season syndrome' was kicking in during the first six weeks of the campaign.

Who are the key players and why?

Town are at their best when captain Josh Falkingham is pulling the strings from the centre of the park. Brendan Kiernan can play on either flank, is full of pace and beats defenders for fun with his quick feet. He has already scored seven and assisted three since his arrival from Welling in the summer.

What style of football can Chesterfield fans expect to see from Harrogate?

They usually try to pass the ball on the deck and shift it quickly. They have a big unit in Mark Beck up top, however, and aren't afraid to go direct either.

A tendency to surrender leads in recent weeks. They've scored first in each of the last three without going on to win any of those matches.

Should Chesterfield expect a backlash after Harrogate gave away a 3-0 lead last week?

Simon Weaver has said he expects a reaction following the disappointment of only ending up with a point, but then again I'm sure John Sheridan is demanding the same after Chesterfield were turned over by bottom side Chorley. I imagine we'll see two sides with a point to prove.

Simon Weaver has been in charge of Harrogate for 10 years, what do you make of the job he has done?

By his own admission, it took him a while to find his feet in management and there were some difficult periods during the first six or seven years of his tenure, but ultimately, he's taken the club to a level that they've never reached before. Since promotion to the National League, his side has remained in and around the play-off picture and I feel he deserves a lot of credit for that.

Do Harrogate have any key players injured/suspended for Saturday?

Utility man Warren Burrell is available again after sitting out last weekend's game due to concussion protocol, so they should be pretty much at full-strength.

I'd expect Burrell to return to the starting XI in a holding midfield role.

Score prediction?

I fancy Town. Either 2-0 or 2-1.