League One betting preview: Derby daybreak for Spireites

 

John Sheridan described the recent FA Cup defeat at home to Torquay as the lowest point of his managerial career and his Chesterfield team hit rock bottom in League One last weekend when they followed up with a 5-2 defeat at Oldham.

However, we're backing them to come good when they welcome Sheffield United to the B2net Stadium on Saturday.

It's a bet that probably raises questions about our sanity because the Spireites have been a shambles lately and a nine-match winless run (seven defeats) is no sort of form to be taking into a game against one of the fancied sides in the division.

But it's the opposition that triggers our optimism because it might just be the type of match they need right now and we have every confidence that Chesterfield can raise their standards to this kind of occasion when everything clicks into place.

Confidence is obviously an issue but the biggest problem in recent weeks has been a recurring lack of concentration. Individual errors are costing the Derbyshire club dear but the prospect of a full house and the size of this particular scalp might just be enough for players to stay switched on for the full 90 minutes.

Our positive instincts are only heightened by the patchy away form that the visitors have shown since dropping down from the Championship last season. The Blades have already been beaten by two of the four teams promoted from the basement, and the 1-0 defeat at Wycombe still remains the Chairboys' only home win of the campaign.

Meanwhile, it's a measure of how workmanlike the Yorkshire outfit are that they became quite attached to loan signings Billy Clarke and Matty Phillips even though they only stayed at Bramall Lane for a month. The Blackpool duo have now returned to Bloomfield Road and won't be coming back.

United did respond to that mini-setback by grinding out a 1-0 win at home to Carlisle last weekend but we don't see enough in that performance to justify them being a shade of odds-against for the short 12-mile trip down the A61.

Meanwhile, we probably shouldn't overlook the fact that Chesterfield boast a few Sheffield Wednesday connections with Sheridan himself a legend on the Hillsborough terraces and Leon Clarke likely to be leading the attack with no shortage of abuse from the travelling fans ringing in his ears.

Sheridan, of course, won't be too concerned about how this game affects the Owls but he has thrown down the gauntlet to his own players.

Speaking after the defeat at Boundary Park, he said: "I'm going to question the players now, and I never normally do that. I accept that I'm not doing my job properly and I'm going to stand up and be counted. But they also need to take a long, hard look at themselves. I'm going to stand up and be counted and I expect them to do the same."

All things considered, there's enough about this game to take a leap of faith. The home win is available at 3/1 and though that's hardly surprising with the Spireites propping up the table, the odds are significantly greater than we would have anticipated at the start of the season. We would expect to look back on it with similar sentiment come the end of the campaign as well.

Recommended bet:

1pt Chesterfield to beat Sheffield United at 3/1 (Victor Chandler)

News
The two faces revealed by the ultraviolet light
newsScholars left shaken after shining ultraviolet light on 500-year-old Welsh manuscript
News
Rosamund Pike played Bond girld Miranda Frost, who died in Die Another Day (PA)
news
Arts and Entertainment
books
News
newsHow do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? With people like this
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: The masterminds behind the scenes

The masterminds behind the election

How do you get your party leader to embrace a message and then stick to it? By employing these people
Machine Gun America: The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons

Machine Gun America

The amusement park where teenagers go to shoot a huge range of automatic weapons
The ethics of pet food: Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?

The ethics of pet food

Why are we are so selective in how we show animals our love?
How Tansy Davies turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

How a composer turned 9/11 into her opera 'Between Worlds'

Tansy Davies makes her operatic debut with a work about the attack on the Twin Towers. Despite the topic, she says it is a life-affirming piece
11 best bedside tables

11 best bedside tables

It could be the first thing you see in the morning, so make it work for you. We find night stands, tables and cabinets to wake up to
Italy vs England player ratings: Did Andros Townsend's goal see him beat Harry Kane and Wayne Rooney to top marks?

Italy vs England player ratings

Did Townsend's goal see him beat Kane and Rooney to top marks?
Danny Higginbotham: An underdog's tale of making the most of it

An underdog's tale of making the most of it

Danny Higginbotham on being let go by Manchester United, annoying Gordon Strachan, utilising his talents to the full at Stoke and plunging into the world of analysis
Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police

Steve Bunce: Inside Boxing

Audley Harrison's abusers forget the debt he's due, but Errol Christie will always remember what he owes the police
No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat