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Match Reports

Notts 3-0 Chesterfield

A fine performance leads to a comfortable win in the derby

1 February 2020

A Kyle Wootton brace added to Enzio Boldewijn's stunner as we recorded a comprehensive win over Chesterfield in front of the BT Sport cameras.

It could have all been so different had Scott Boden converted from the spot shortly before the break, but he was denied by Ross Fitzsimons who started against the club he had been on loan at before being recalled only eight days earlier.

In truth, that would have been an undeserved advantage for the Spireites who had seen us denied by the post and bar during the opening 45, and the second period led to a scoreline far more indicative of the balance of play.

Boldewijn lit up Meadow Lane with a peach of a strike, before Wootton nodded home from six yards out to put us two ahead just before the hour. 

And he doubled his tally as he turned home the rebound from Boldewijn's shot inside the final 15 minutes as we climbed to sixth in the Vanarama National League.

Neal Ardley made three changes from the side beaten at Dagenham and Redbridge last week - two of which were enforced as Michael Doyle served the first game of his three-match suspension and Zoumana Bakayogo missed out with injury.

Kristian Dennis was the third to make way as he dropped to the bench, with Jim O'Brien, Wes Thomas and the fit again Dion Kelly-Evans coming into the side.

There was a home debut for Cal Roberts, who claimed the first chance of the day when his 25-yarder skidded wide of the post on five minutes.

We were to go even closer in the ninth when Boldewijn stood a cross up to the back post where Connell Rawlinson met it to nod back across goal. Shwan Jalal was scrambling across his line but couldn't get there and was relieved to see the effort strike the upright before the flag was raised against Thomas as he followed up.

The frame of the goal denied us again on 16 minutes after an extravagant one-two between Rose and O'Brien allowed the Scot to send Thomas in behind and he was fouled by Yarney, who was booked. Boldewijn stood over the set piece and struck it with power, but the crossbar came to Chesterfield's rescue.

The visitors had their first real sighter when right wing-back Jordan Cropper's driven cross found Scott Boden but the striker had to do a lot of work just to meet the delivery and his header lacked direction.

Crosses from Kelly-Evans and Richard Brindley went wide of the mark as we continued to press for the opener but Chesterfield were showing a threat from long throws and Will Evans dragged wide after Rose half-cleared when Fitzsimons failed to claim one midway through the half.

Roberts was proving a bright spark and, shortly after Kelly-Evans' efforts to meet his cross went unrewarded, he led a speedy break before rolling the ball into Boldewijn inside the area. The Dutchman dinked across goal and his delivery was begging for a touch, but neither Thomas or Wootton were in a position to make the vital connection.

Inside the final 10 minutes of the half, Boldewijn's fizzed cross was glanced wide by Thomas as we continued in our role of aggressors but, with five left before the break, Chesterfield were awarded a penalty.

David Buchanan got forward from left wing-back to chase a ball over the top before Brindley was deemed to have pulled him back inside the area. The right back was booked and Boden stood over the spot-kick, but Fitzsimons got down to his left to keep out the poorly hit penalty and gather at the second attempt.

One minute of added time was indicated, during which Rose's low cross-shot was pushed away by Jalal before the sides retreated to their dressing rooms. 

Alex Lacey made a good block on Jonathan Smith's shot early in the second half which allowed us to break through Roberts, who set back for Rose to strike. His low strike went in Thomas' direction and he looked to flick goalwards but couldn't direct the ball on target.

Lacey then saw a shot on the turn well blocked after Jalal had made a poor attempt to punch clear Roberts' cross and the Spireites keeper was picking the ball out of his net within a minute.

With 52 on the clock, Boldewijn had time and space to carry the ball through the centre of the park and with Meadow Lane screaming for a shot he obliged from 20 yards out and thundered into the top corner. 

It was no more than we deserved on the balance of play but we were almost pegged back within five minutes when a long ball forward broke kindly for Tom Denton to volley goalwards, and it was us thanking the crossbar this time as his strike rebounded clear.

And, with Chesterfield were still reeling from their near miss, we doubled our advantage just before the hour.

Patient play down our right wing allowed Roberts the freedom to check back onto his left foot and bend a beautiful inviting cross into the area. Wootton stooped to meet it on the six-yard line and nodded it past Jalal to record his 10th league goal of the season and his first since signing a permanent deal.

Buchanan seemed to be providing most of Chesterfield's threat and, shortly after his whipped cross had marginally evaded Denton, he intercepted O'Brien's pass to charge at our goal and call Fitzsimons into a great save from the edge of the area. 

The visitors were showing plenty of endeavour and it looked as though we needed a third to ensure a comfortable finale, which we duly found inside the final quarter of an hour.

Shortly after Lacey had nodded Roberts' cross wide, Boldewijn drove down the left wing before cutting inside and striking at goal with 77 played. Jalal could only parry the ball clear and Wootton was on hand to turn home the rebound and pull clear as our leading league scorer. 

Dennis replaced Thomas in the aftermath, and he was quickly followed onto the field by Tom Crawford as O'Brien made way.

Denton met Yarney's deep cross to head straight at Fitzsimons on 81 minutes and, in an attempt to preserve a clean sheet, Ardley sent Pierce Bird on in place of Roberts with eight to play.

The change had exactly that effect, and in a flash three additional minutes were signalled in, during which Curtis Weston called Fitzsimons into a comfortable save from range moments before the final whistle brought an end to an excellent evening at the Lane. 


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