Armand Gnanduillet, Eoin Doyle with a penalty and Charlie Raglan, with his first ever senior goal, gave Spireites a win double over Vale as they overcame Rob Page’s Valiants with a considerable ease.
It was Ernie Moss day at the Proact as supporters have the opportunity to salute the club’s all time record scorer, recently diagnosed as suffering from a rare form of dementia called Pick’s Disease.
Ernie was to be joined by former colleagues Dave Pugh, Gerry Clarke, Albert Holmes, Les Hunter, Martin Wright, Sean O’Neill, Andy Kowalski, Bob Newton, Phil Brown, Kevin Randall, Phil Walker, Phil Tingay and Steve Baines as well as Phil Sproson, a team mate from his successful spell at Port Vale. They will be introduced to the crowd at half-time.
The matchday magazine features Moss on the front cover and also includes a poster of the great man and special badges are on sale with money going towards Dementia UK. Beer drinkers are able to enjoy a pint of Brampton Brewery’s special recipe Ernie 8 on the concourses and lounges.
There was to be a minute’s applause after on 8 minutes, the number synonymous with the man that scored 191 times for Spireites.
Spireites player and current PFA Chairman Ritchie Humphreys said: “Ernie at Chesterfield, he has the record amount of goals here and I think the younger players have a massive amount of respect for players that have gone before them, they respect the contribution that Ernie Moss made for this football club. Hopefully we can get a win to celebrate the career of Ernie on Saturday.”
Following on from terrific performances in the FA Cup at MK Dons (won 1-0) and at Scunthorpe (2-2) Paul Cook selects an unchanged eleven though on the bench Jimmy Ryan returns after injury and loanee Mani Dieseruvwe gets his first chance in the squad.
Sam Hird makes his 100th club appearance.
Chesterfield went into the game with just one defeat in 12, sitting in seventh spot in the table and seeking a win double after the 2-1 win at Vale Park in August.
Vale, level on points from a game more than Spireites, have won three of their last four games to shoot up the table. Managed by former Spireite and Blades defender Rob Page, they feature Dany N’Guessan, almost signed by John Sheridan in 2011, but ex-Miller Tom Pope is out injured.
Whilst still a factor, the wind had dropped a little by kick-off time.
Two sides, locked together on 32 points, entered the game unchanged, Vale having nicked an injury time 2-1 win over Gillingham last week whilst Spireites were in action in midweek in the cup, coming from behind to grab a terrific draw at Scunthorpe on Tuesday.
Dodds got onto the end of a Marshall cross but his header over was poor. Morsy delivered to Doyle but the Irishman was unable to control inside the six.
Morsy saw two shots blocked against his former club as he was the busiest man on the park early on, with the Vale fans booing his every touch.
Gnanduillet took a tumble in the box and looked for a penalty but referee Bond was unimpressed and awarded a goal kick.
During the 8th minute, just about everyone in the Stadium stood to applaud Ernie Moss, the No 8 being synonymous with the great man.
On 11 Spireites took the lead. Boco and Roberts combined on the left of the box and Roberts’ cross found GNANDUILLET who’d peeled off his markers and was able to head downwards from an unmarked position to put the hosts in front.
There was a terrific welcome for Ernie Moss and his former colleagues at half time and their lap of honour was appreciated on all four sides of the ground.
Daniel came on for N’Guessan for Vale.
Boco whipped a cross in and Doyle stumbled as he burst forwards. Williamson did well to ride a tackle by Hird and his 25 yard shot had power but flew just wide of the upright.
Morsy found some space and his inviting cross just eluded Doyle’s stooping dive. Marshall’s shot was blocked, the Vale fans shouted for ‘hands’ as the second half started out evenly.
O’Connor was booked for foul on Roberts and Lines came on for the carded midfielder. Marshall winkled out a corner that was inadvertently cleared by team mate Veseli.
Doyle was tripped by Veseli, in the box, a card and a spot kick followed and DOYLE got up to hit it high go double the lead right in the hour.
Morsy forced a diving save from Neal from 18 yards and Vale took an age to clear the subsequent corner.
Williamson came close to reducing the deficit as his shot on the turn hit the bar as Vale pushed men up with nothing to lose.
Gardner came on for Gnanduillet and immediately began to look dangerous. Campion forced a save from Lee but most of the latter stages of the game were played out in Vale territory as Spireites extended their impressive run of results to maintain 7th spot in the table.
Chesterfield (4-4-2): Lee; Darikwa, Hird, Raglan, Clucas; Boco, Morsy, Humphreys, Roberts; Doyle, Gnanduillet. Subs: Wright, Jones, Gardner, O’Shea, Ryan, Talbot, Dieseruvwe.
Port Vale (4-4-1-1): Neal; Yates, Veseli, Duffy, Dickinson; Marshall, O’Connor, Brown, N’Guessan; Dodds; Williamson. Subs: Johnson, Robertson, Birchall, Lines, Daniel, Moore, Campion.
Ref: Darren Bond (Lancashire)