What Chesterfield boss John Sheridan should consider to turn their season around - five talking points

Spireites manager John Sheridan. Picture John Hobson/AHPIX LTD.
Spireites manager John Sheridan. Picture John Hobson/AHPIX LTD.

Chesterfield are currently third bottom of the National League at the midway point of the season.

It is fair to say it has been nowhere near good enough for a club tipped to challenge for promotion with one of the biggest budgets in the division.

Here are five points manager John Sheridan has to address if he is to turn their season around…

Make fewer changes

The Spireites boss has only named the same starting line-up twice so far this season.

In the last three matches he has made 16 changes (six v Harrogate and Hartlepool United and four v Aldershot).

His explanation for this has been that no one is making themselves undroppable.

Sheridan said: "People show me glimpses for 15, 20 minutes of what they can actually do and then I will start them because they finished the game strongly and then they do not perform to the manner I want and it has been never ending really throughout the season. I am very unsure who to pick because no one is showing me they should be in the team and stay in the team.”

What Sheridan must do now is nail down what he thinks is his best team and stick with it.

If he names the same line-up for a few games running, even if they lose, he might be rewarded further down the line.

If he does not do this, then there is only one way this season is going to end.

Be fairer with players

He mentioned being fairer with some players in his pre-match press conference before the Aldershot game.

There have been a number of times this season when a player has played, then been dropped from the matchday squad and then find themselves back on the bench.

Players like to know where they stand and want to feel valued and wanted.

He has to instill some stability into the squad going forward.

Change of game plan 

As much as Sheridan wants his team to play attacking football he may have to look at taking a different approach just to get the Spireites some positive results.

Against Notts County, Chesterfield let the Magpies have the ball and the Spireites looked to play on the counter.

Rather than the pressure being on the Blues to do all the pressing, they simply sat back and made life as difficult as possible for County.

Town looked solid, scored a great goal on the counter-attack and saw the game out reasonably comfortably.

It might not be the way Sheridan wants to play long-term, but he has to consider it because when they are in possession they give it away far too easily and end up being wide open.

Instill some confidence into the players

Confidence is understandably low given performances and results so far this campaign.

Sheridan’s record as a manager is fairly decent and he is known for turning struggling clubs around and saving them from relegation – he did exactly this when he took over the Spireites last season.

Confidence comes with winning football matches, but he has to delve into all of his experience to make the players believe in themselves more.

Look at the Fondop-Boden partnership more

Mike Fondop and Scott Boden both have nine goals each in all competitions.

Since Tom Denton returned from injury on September 14, Fondop and Boden have only started together twice.

Is this Saturday the time to give the joint top scorers another chance to play together? I think it is. They might not be a natural partnership like Denton and Benton, but they could do with a fresh approach for home games in particular.