Report: Stags 0-1 Spireites
Chesterfield progressed to the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Third Round, with a 1-0 win over Mansfield Town at One Call Stadium.
Gary McSheffrey scored The Spireites’ winner, converting a cross by Sam Hird on 72 minutes, during an incident that saw Ritchie Sutton suffer a serious injury.
Sutton received lengthy treatment on the pitch and was eventually carried off on a stretcher, which resulted in 14 minutes of added time.
The Stags created numerous opportunities throughout the match and were unfortunate to bow out of the competition at this early stage.
Mansfield began at a frantic pace and almost struck an opener within 15 seconds.
Calvin Andrew’s clever flick from Keiran Murtagh’s chipped ball put Lee Stevenson in the clear, but his angled strike across the six-yard box was hooked away by Ian Evatt.
Mansfield continued to dominate possession and Stevenson whistled a drive over the woodwork from the edge of the area, following Jamie McGuire’s through ball.
The Stags then spurned a gilt-edge chance to register an early lead on eight minutes.
Sam Clucas’ defence-splitting pass released an advancing Stevenson, who was denied by Tommy Lee in a one-on-one situation.
At the other end, The Spireites created their first opportunity on 11 minutes, but Alan Marriott made a routine save from Chris Porter’s hooked near-post flick.
However, Mansfield, buoyed by a noisy One Call Stadium, continued to look threatening and created another good chance on the quarter-hour mark.
Hird was deservedly cautioned for a wild lunge on Junior Daniel on the left flank, before Clucas’ resulting set-piece cross was headed over by John Dempster.
Paul Cook’s side lacked fluidity in their play and neither Jay O’Shea nor Porter could find the target, as The Spireites were restricted to long-range efforts.
On the half-hour mark, there was a worrying moment for The Stags when Ryan Edwards picked out McSheffrey with a long punt towards the far-post, but the striker was flagged offside.
Edwards then prevented his team from falling behind with a brave block, following a well-struck effort by Stags’ striker Andrew, just a few minutes later.
Mansfield remained on the front-foot, but Andrew could have done much better when he fired wide, having latched onto Daniel’s long ball on 38 minutes.
Prior to half-time, Jamie Devitt received a yellow card for a foul on Sutton, before Liam Cooper became the third Spireites player to be booked, this time for a wreckless tackle on Clucas.
Marriott had to make a brilliant full-stretch save in added time at the end of the first half, when Devitt powered a 30-yard free-kick towards the target.
The visitors wasted a golden opportunity to break the deadlock on 52 minutes, when O’Shea’s inviting right-wing cross was bundled wide by Porter at the near-post.
Porter was again wasteful before the hour-mark, heading well from a good central position inside the area, following Jimmy Ryan’s deep cross.
By this stage, Chesterfield were growing in confidence and Marriott was at full-stretch to keep out a swerving 20-yard strike by the influential O’Shea.
Stevenson also caught sight of goal for The Stags at the opposite end, latching onto a clever pull-back by Clucas, but his goalwards shot was cleared by Evatt.
On 64 minutes, Mansfield should have taken a deserved lead.
Stevenson slipped an inside ball to Daniel, which put the winger into a one-on-one, but Spireites shot-stopper Lee just did enough to deflect Daniel’s effort wide.
McSheffrey blazed over for Chesterfield with a speculative 25-yard shot midway through the second period, as the prospect of penalties began to loom large.
Moments later, O’Shea was unable to test Marriott despite a mazy solo run, but on 72 minutes, The Spireites went ahead.
Dempster, Marriott and Ritchie Sutton collided as they attempted to clear Hird’s cross, which allowed McSheffrey a simple tap-in.
However, whilst The Spireites celebrated, The Stags players’ attention turned towards Sutton, who lay motionless on the pitch after the collision.
The defender received lengthy treatment, both from physio Simon Murphy and then the paramedics, as concern for his health grew.
Following 10 minutes of treatment, Sutton received applause from both sets of supporters as he was carried away on a stretcher, with James Jennings replacing him.
Mansfield prepared themselves for one last push and Paul Cox made his third and final change ahead of 14 minutes of stoppage-time, when Ollie Palmer replaced Stevenson.
The Stags almost found an equaliser in the first of those 14 minutes, when Howell’s close-range effort amidst a goalmouth scramble was deflected wide.
Palmer also came close in the 13th minute of added time, when his left-foot toe-poke inside the area, was tipped over by Lee at full-stretch.
Nevertheless, The Stags were unable to find an equaliser as Chesterfield survived to book their place in the Third Round.