Spireites count the cost

Chesterfield 1Hartlepool 3Attendance: 2,127

Spireites bowed out of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy against Danny Wilson's Hartlepool in a hugely entertaining game that spawned a hatful of chances.

There was concern on the injury front as Phil Picken and Jamie Winter both took ankle knocks that makes them both doubtful for the week's main encounter, Friday night's League Two home game against Bury.

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The visitors went into the break a goal to the good after sub David Foley, on for the injured Matty Robson, latched onto a through-ball from Sheffield-born Richie Barker, an ex-Owl and Miller. The scorer looked suspiciously offside though he finished well, slotting the ball beyond Barry Roche.

James Brown put the tie beyond doubt with two goals in the opening quarter of an hour of the second half before Wayne Allison pulled one back.

Brown's first came after he received the ball on the edge of the penalty box, dribbled through to the right side of the six before lifting the ball from an acute angle, over Roche, to drop inside the far post. Inspired play. Or was it a cross that fortuitously drifted in?

Lee Richardson thought the latter: "We should have dealt with it better, a short corner, we shouldn't have allowed the lad to get in down the side of us. Tiger Woods would have been impressed with the chip. I don't think it was a chip, I think if he was honest, he'd tell you it was just a cross really that ended up in the back of the net."

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The manager was equally frustrated with the other two concessions: "The first and third goals were very disappointing ones. We had opportunities to clear the danger. We'd not been punished like that on Saturday when we made mistakes, but we were tonight. I had a word with the people concerned and it needs to not happen again."

That third goal came from a left sided move by Hartlepool who crossed in for Brown to stab home from close range.

Richardson was pleased with Chesterfield's forward movement: "We created as many chances as we have for a long time. I thought we took the game to them and, but for some wayward finishing, could have easily scored four or five ourselves."

The Chief's consolation wasn't a typical Allison goal. He turned his marker inside the box and drilled home a low shot from 15 yards. Just before the third goal, there was the even rarer sight of Allison outpacing the defence, racing beyond a wake of defenders but he pulled his one-on-one shot wide of the mark.

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On loan Adam Rooney had plenty of efforts. His build up play was exemplary, his finishing, so often a strength in his short career, let him down as he saw two excellent chances saved and a couple more fly wide.

Josh Law, brother of Sheffield United's Nicky, was an early sub for Picken and he almost capped his first team debut with a goal, thumping the bar with an exquisite 25 yard free kick.