Nine points adrift of safety, John Sheridan knows his side needs to perform miracles in their final seven games to stay up.
Asked whether tomorrow’s Scunthorpe United match at the B2net was a ‘must win’ game, a phrase most managers hate, he simply said: “They’re all must-win games now.”
Chesterfield need 17 points to get to 50, a generally-held benchmark for safety, the equivalent of five wins and two draws. Having won just seven times in League One this term, that’s a massive ask, though none of their remaining fixtures are against top eight sides.
Alan Knill’s Iron, unbeaten in seven though with draws in their last five outings, are three points ahead of the drop-zone and would probably settle for a sixth straight stalemate. Spireites have to win.
Striker Jack Lester (groin) remains sidelined and defender Gregor Robertson has a persistently troublesome thigh that’s keeping him out of contention.
Midfielder Jimmy Juan has been back in full training for a few days but is more likely to come into contention for the Easter fixtures.
Sheridan will look at the first 45 minutes of Wednesday’s game at Bramall Lane and pick out a lot of positives.
Jordan Bowery caused plenty of problems, as did Alex Mendy and Craig Westcarr, but after the break the defence struggled to keep out the on-fire Ched Evans.
With that in mind, Liam Ridehalgh and Simon Ford could be set for recalls. Forgotten midfielder Mark Randall, who has come on as a sub in the last two games after being absent from the first team since October, could also be a possible starter after delivering some telling passes in those appearances.
However, despite the 4-1 loss, major changes look unlikely as Spireites look to drastically turn round their league form having won just twice in 11 attempts.