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Match Reports

Notts 2-2 Chesterfield

Langstaff's brace earns point

20 August 2022

Match Reports

Notts 2-2 Chesterfield

Langstaff's brace earns point

20 August 2022

A second-half brace from Macaulay Langstaff earned us a point in a dramatic encounter with Chesterfield.

The forward brilliantly converted two poacher's efforts to restore parity after Liam Mandeville and Akwasi Asante had put the visitors into what looked at one time like an unassailable lead.

And Langstaff was so close to winning it at the death with a finish inside the six-yard box only for a visiting defender to make a crucial block.

Luke Williams opted for a slight change in shape as Kairo Mitchell made his first start of the season, partnering Langstaff up front.

But, despite making a bright start to the match, it was the visitors who went ahead on 16 minutes when Mandeville produced a superb finish inside the area after Richard Brindley had made an excellent block to deny Asante.

Matt Palmer's long-range, left-footed effort was comfortably held by former Magpie Ross Fitzsimons and Mitchell couldn't dive far enough to get his diving header on target as we sought an equaliser.

A minute later, Joe Quigley had a chance to make it 2-0 but couldn't react quickly enough to turn a cut-back from the left beyond Sam Slocombe.

Branden Horton was the next Chesterfield man to try his luck, finding the side-netting after a right-wing cross had come all the way out to him, before the half ended with a left-footed Langstaff effort which was easily held by Fitzsimons.

After seeing an Armando Dobra effort deflected behind in the opening stages of the second half, Mitchell's header from Kyle Cameron's cross was saved moments before the central defender saw a shot of his own blocked, with Langstaff being denied on the follow-up.

It was end-to-end stuff and we nearly gifted our opponents a second goal when Aden Baldwin conceded possession inside his own penalty area, with Quigley eventually sending a shot narrowly wide.

That was only to be a temporary reprieve, however, as two minutes later the ball made its way to Asante in the area and his shot had too much power for Slocombe.

We needed a quick response and almost had one when Langstaff was played into the area, only for Fitzsimons to make an excellent save from his low shot.

And the freneticism continued with a Spireites attack which resulted in Asante smashing a shot against the upright following Jeff King's quickly-taken free-kick.

Mitchell and O'Brien then made way for Sam Austin and Cedwyn Scott in a move which would prove to change the course of the match.

Within a minute we had reduced the defecit when a Chesterfield defender failed to properly clear the ball, presenting it to Langstaff 20 yards out. With Fitzsimons caught cold and out of position, Langstaff took the shot early and there was no stopping it from hitting the back of the net.

And, two minutes later, a remarkable comeback was complete when Scott played Austin into space down the right and watched on as the former Kidderminster captain floated the perfect cross into the middle, where Langstaff had snuck into space between defenders and was able to nod the ball into the bottom corner.

The atmosphere was electric inside Meadow Lane at this point and Langstaff had a half-chance for the hat-trick when he was played in over the top. He had to check back on to his right foot, however, and couldn't find the far top corner from the edge of the area.

Two minutes later, Austin won a free-kick in a central position 20 yards out but Ruben Rodrigues was unable to hit the target.

Aden Baldwin then hobbled off with a persistent Achilles problem, Geraldo Bajrami replacing him, but it was the other end of the field where the action continued as Scott was played in on goal only to be flagged for what looked like an incorrect offside.

A minute later, Brindley was equal to another Asante shot as the game entered what proved to be a very cagey finale.

There was still time for one more big moment, however, and it came on 88 minutes when Rodrigues robbed the visitors of possession high up the field and entered the box from the left. His low cross presented Langstaff with a great chance for an incredible hat-trick but a defender got in the way to deny him.

That proved to be our final opportunity to get the winner and the final notable shot of the day went to the visitors, whose fierce 30-yard free-kick was bravely blocked by the head of Bajrami who was deemed OK to continue after being assessed by the medical staff.

STARTING XI: Slocombe; Cameron, Baldwin (Bajrami 72'), Brindley; Chicksen, Nemane; Palmer, O'Brien (Scott 59'), Rodrigues; Mitchell (Austin 59'), Langstaff

UNUSED SUBS: Francis, Taylor

BOOKINGS: O'Brien 37', Rodrigues 64'

ATTENDANCE: 8,287 (1,886)


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