Chesterfield v Boreham Wood
Saturday 29th October 2022, 3:00pm
Technique Stadium, National League

A week on from the draw with promotion rivals Wrexham, the Wood face another top-of-the-table clash with a visit to Derbyshire to take on a Chesterfield side who sit just one place and one point above the Wood.


Back-to-back relegations saw Chesterfield find themselves in the National League for the first time in 2018, but after two bottom half finishes the Spireites are finally looking like they are on the rise. The arrival of James Rowe sparked a resurgence for the Derbyshire-based outfit as he guided the club from 22nd when he arrived to a sixth place finish in 2020/21, before Paul Cook took the reins the following season and recorded more points as they finished seventh. Cook also improved on the previous campaign by reaching the play-off semi-final, only to be defeated by Solihull Moors. Nonetheless, the Spireites strengthened in the summer by signing a number of players from the Football League clubs and the non-league including Ollie Banks, Armando Dobra, Branden Horton, Darren Oldaker and Michael Gyasi, and currently sit fourth in the National League table with eight wins, four draws and three defeats.


York City 1-1 Chesterfield
Tuesday 25th October 2022
Vanarama National League

Chesterfield were held to a stalemate at York City as a late strike from Mitch Hancox cancelled out Jeff King’s early opener.

Some early pressure from the hosts saw York fail to carve out an opening with their opponents slowly regaining control, before winning a free kick as the game approached the tenth minute. King stepped over the ball to curl a sweetly-struck effort past Ethan Ross to give his side a dream start. The Spireites then broke quickly from a City corner with Akwasi Asante bursting into the box before seeing his effort blocked by Maxim Kouogun, but it was King and Asante who were at the heart of Chesterfield’s positivity. The former blasted an effort that went narrowly wide before turning provider when he delivered for Asante, prior to a prolonged spell of possession that ended with Jesurun Uchegbulam’s header going wide. The hosts grew back into it towards the end of the half with chances for Maziar Kouhyar, Gus Mafuta and Olly Dyson, before Lenell John-Lewis’ appeal for a penalty on the being waved away on the stroke of half time.

The Minsterman had the momentum in the second half and started strongly, winning a corner from their first attack. Chesterfield continued to produce opportunities though with Ollie Banks heading over the crossbar before Darren Oldaker’s threaded pass just ran away from Kabongo Tshimanga. They should have made it two when King found Asante, who was inches away from getting on the end of his angled ball across goal, and City were determined to take advantage and find their equaliser. Kouhyar’s mazy run ending with the referee awarding a free kick to the hosts, which the Afghanistan international floated into the arms of Ross Fitzsimon. They did soon have their leveller though when substitute Hancox connected with former Spireite Alex Whittle’s low cross, and City went close to winning it at the death when Manny Duku forced Fitzsimon into a fantastic save, before the referee brought a close to proceedings.


York City (A) D1-1
Bromley (H) W3-2
Anstey Nomads (A) W0-3
Eastleigh (A) L2-1
Dagenham & Redbridge (H) L2-3
Maidenhead United (H) L1-2

An extremely positive start to the season saw Chesterfield remain unbeaten in their opening ten games, but defeat was eventually on the way with Maidenhead United succumbing the Spireites to their first loss of the season. This would be followed by two more defeats as Chesterfield struggled to bounce back, with three first half goals seeing Dagenham & Redbridge secure all three points despite a second half resurgence from their opponents before a late strike from Brennan Camp saw Eastleigh nick the win at the Silverlake Stadium four days later. In need of reinvigoration, the FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round came at the perfect time for the Spireites, and goals from Armando Dobra, Akwasi Asante and Kabongo Tshimanga helped them get their mojo back, securing a comfortable 3-0 victory over United Counties League Premier Division North side Anstey Nomads. Back with momentum, Chesterfield followed this up with a 3-2 win over Bromley at the Technique Stadium and were 11 minutes away from making it three wins in a row, but for a late strike from Mitch Hancox which stole a draw for York City last time out.


Veteran manager Paul Cook returned to the Technique Stadium at the start of February 2022 having previously guided Chesterfield from League Two to the League One play-offs between 2012 and 2015. After a 23-year playing career came to an end in 2006, he took over at Southport before moving to Sligo Rovers, and returned to England in 2012 for a short-lived stint with Accrington Stanley which preceded his first spell with the Spireites. He also achieved success in charge of Portsmouth and Wigan Athletic, guiding the two clubs to the League Two and League One titles respectively before achieving a comfortable mid-table finish in the Championship with the Latics, although they would be relegated anyway due to a 12-point deduction. He would depart the DW Stadium with the club surrounded in financial uncertainty and joined Championship hopefuls Ipswich Town, but would be dismissed after just over nine months in the role before opting to drop down two divisions to re-join Chesterfield seven years after leaving.


Former Wood striker Kabongo Tshimanga has gone from strength to strength since moving to league rivals Chesterfield, although he enjoyed a bittersweet debut season at the Technique Stadium. After coming through the ranks at MK Dons, a succession of loan spells at Aldershot Town, Chelmsford Town, Corby Town, Nuneaton Town, Chesham United, Þróttur and Yeovil Town brought an end his 12-year affiliation with the Dons in 2017, with a short stay at Boston United preceding a move to Oxford City. A stunning 37 goals in all competitions during the 2018/19 campaign saw him win the Manager’s Player, Player’s Player and Fan’s Player of the Year awards, and his form saw him picked up by National League side Boreham Wood. A firm fans’ favourite in Hertfordshire, Tshimanga scored 38 goals in 84 appearances and helped the club challenge for the play-offs in two of his three seasons, establishing himself as one of the most clinical finishers in the division. He would later be sold to Chesterfield and scored 24 goals in his first 27 National League appearances, before a leg injury cut his season short. He has since recovered and has returned to the team this season, scoring four goals in just three starts.


Boreham Wood 1-1 Chesterfield
Saturday 12th March 2022
Vanarama National League

A late Akwasi Asante opener was cancelled out by an even later Adrian Clifton header as the Wood secure a draw in front of the BT Sport cameras.

The opening 25 minutes was full of action with the visitors in particular threatening, as Jim Kellerman kicked things off with a sliced shot from distance early on. Tyrone Marsh appealed for a penalty after a rare Wood attack before Calvin Miller tested Taye Ashby-Hammond after a neat one-two with Saidou Khan. Further chances for Liam Mandeville, Jeff King and Tom Whelan went amiss before Josh Rees and Marsh went close for the Wood, but neither was able to find a way past Scott Loach. Whelan later fired an effort goalward after some good work from Khan and Joe Quigley before having a shot cleared off the line on the stroke of the interval, but the visitors were unable to break down a stubborn Wood defence as chances dried up towards the end of the half.

The hosts looked to improve after the break and produced the better of the early chances with Rees, David Stephens and Marsh all going close. There were then two moments of drama at either end with penalty appeals for both sides, as the ball seemingly struck the hand of Stephens moments before Jamal Fyfield went down in the box, but nothing was given in either instance. The Wood continued to dominate proceedings with Rees forcing Loach into an outstretched save after some excellent work from Marsh, with the former then turning provider for the latter as Marsh struck an effort just wide of the far post. The visitors were soon awarded a golden opportunity when Jacob Mendy Mendy was controversially penalised for a handball in the box, with Asante stepping up to convert the spot-kick. The Wood refused to give up though, and after going close to an immediate equaliser through Clifton and Danilo Orsi, the former did soon make his mark when he sent a bullet header past Loach after meeting Rees’ cross, securing the all-important equaliser right at the death.


AFC Bournemouth academy product Joe Quigley spent more than a decade at Dean Court, and spent a number of loan spells away as he gained experience early on in his career. The last of these loan spells saw him make the move north to Boreham Wood, joining the club midway through the 2017/18 campaign after spending the first half of the season at League Two side Newport County. With stints at Poole Town, Torquay United, Wrexham and Woking, Quigley knew what non-league football was about already and he played a part in a memorable season in the Wood’s history which ended in a Wembley Stadium appearance as the club reached the play-off final. The Republic of Ireland youth international made his debut on the same day he was announced when he played 80 minutes in a 3-2 victory at Dagenham & Redbridge, before scoring his first goal in a 3-0 win over Ebbsfleet United. Although he wasn’t a regular starter due to the form of the likes of Morgan Ferrier and Bruno Andrade, Quigley went on to play 12 times for the club in all competitions, including an appearance in each round of the play-offs before returning to Bournemouth at the end of his loan spell.



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