Bury 0-2 Chesterfield – League 2

BuryAway

On Saturday 3rd August 2013, I went to Gigg Lane to watch Bury play Chesterfield in the first game of the 2013/14 season.

The wait is over. After all the talk, the predictions and excitement the new season had finally arrived and for the Spireites the 2013/14 campaign kicked off with a trip to Bury. It was a beautiful summers day and we made the journey to Greater Manchester on the Chesterfield supporters coach with much anticipation, hoping that our side could kick-start the season with three points. I had never seen a game at Gigg Lane, although I had briefly visited the home of the Shakers back in 2008 for a look, and so this added to my excitement as I ticked off another of the ’92’ from my list.

We arrived at the ground with little over an hour until kick off time and had a look around the outside of the stadium, soaking up the matchday atmosphere, taking photos and purchasing our tickets before heading through the turnstiles and taking our seats on the Manchester Road End where visiting supporters are housed.

For both sides the new season signalled something of a new start. Bury were billing this game as the start of their revolution, with the club starting the campaign under new ownership and boasting an almost entirely different squad, the Shakers were hoping to return to the third tier at the first time of asking. Meanwhile, Chesterfield boss Paul Cook was embarking on his first full season in charge of the club and he had made no less than ten summer signings to ensure that they would not fall short of the top seven this time around.

The two managers named a number of debutants amongst their starting elevens. Paul Cook gave debuts to five of his new signings – Ryan Edwards, Ritchie Humphreys, Jimmy Ryan, Sam Morsy and Gary Roberts – while a remarkable seven players made their first league starts for Bury. The home side lined up in a 4-4-2 formation with Ashley Grimes and Tom Soares leading the attack for the Shakers. For Chesterfield, Marc Richards started in the lone striker role while Ryan Edwards and Sam Hird was the chosen centre back pairing due to injury of first choice defenders Liam Cooper and Ian Evatt.

The game got underway in front of a crowd of 4,337, over a thousand of which had made the journey from Derbyshire, and it was Bury who started the game strongest – Shaun Harrad forcing an early save out of Tommy Lee in front of the away supporters.

The Shakers had a number of corners in the early stages of the match, but the solid Chesterfield defence held out and the visitors almost took an early lead on the counter attack.  Summer signing Gary Roberts saw his effort blocked before fellow debutant Jimmy Ryan fired the rebound just yards wide of the far post.

Bury had the best opportunity of the game so far on the 20th minute when Craig Jones’ free kick found the head of Andy Procter. The midfielder was left unmarked in the box and looked certain to convert the chance, but he failed to get a good connection on the ball and it fell harmlessly into the arms of the relieved Chesterfield goalkeeper Lee.

And the Shakers should have been ahead on the half hour mark. Soares picked up the ball inside the area and controlled it, cutting past a player, well before somehow blazing his effort into the stand with an open goal at his disposal.

On the stroke of half time, the home side again came close to scoring when Nathan Cameron fired a strike goalwards but Lee managed to keep it out to make sure the game was scoreless at the break.

After being on the back foot and struggling to get going for the majority of the first half, the Spireites came out looking like a different side in the second period and a superb solo goal from Jay O’Shea put the Spireites ahead on the 50th minute. The Irishman went past defender Gareth Roberts before curling the ball into the opposite corner, much to the delight of the travelling supporters and players alike.

Bury immediately went looking for a way back into the game but they were caught on the counter just after the hour as the Spireites doubled their advantage. Richards was on the receiving end of a long ball forward and he charged past Richard Hinds before firing a low shot home at the near post.

Chesterfield continued to dominate the play without creating many other clear cut chances. Cook replaced the two scorers with Tendayi Darikwa and Eoin Doyle, who made his league debut for the visitors.  Doyle was unlucky not to add a third to the Spireites’ tally in stoppage time when his effort was cleared off the line but in the end it did not matter as Chesterfield headed back to Derbyshire with all 3 points and a clean sheet.

It had been the perfect start for Chesterfield and the result sent the supporters home with much reason for optimism. After a couple of disappointing seasons the Spireites will be hoping to return to League 1 and anything less than a top seven placed finish would be a huge blow for the club. For Bury, while the defeat is obviously disappointing, their first half performance in particular showed that they are tough opposition and should certainly be up in the business end of the table come May.

Next up for both these sides is Capital One Cup action in midweek. Bury host Crewe Alexandra while Chesterfield travel to Elland Road to take on Leeds United which is sure to be a very tough tie for the Spireites on Wednesday night.

Bury 02 Chesterfield

O’Shea ’50, Richards ’66

Lainton, Begley, Roberts, Procter, Hinds, Cameron, Jones, Holden (Mayor ’75), Harrad (Jackson ’68), Grimes (Forrester ’61), Soares

Lee, Talbot, Humphreys, Togwell (Smith), Hird, Edwards, Roberts, Morsy, Richards (Doyle ’73), O’Shea (Darikwa ’84), Ryan

 Attendance: 4,337

The Chesterfield team coach outside Gigg Lane

The Chesterfield team coach outside Gigg Lane

Me and my mate Michael outside the ground

Me and my mate Michael outside the ground

Bury FC

Bury FC

My first view of inside Gigg Lane

My first view of inside Gigg Lane

The Cemetery End

The Cemetery End

Main Stand

Main Stand

Chesterfield players warm up

Chesterfield players warm up

Michael, my Dad and me on the away end

Michael, my Dad and me on the away end

Chesterfield supporters arriving

Chesterfield supporters arriving

The visiting players warm up ahead of the first game of the new season

The visiting players warm up ahead of the first game of the new season

The Watterson's at Bury FC

The Watterson’s at Bury FC

The away end

The away end

Goalkeeper Tommy Lee does some stretches

Goalkeeper Tommy Lee does some stretches

Goalkeeping coach Eric Nixon

Goalkeeping coach Eric Nixon

Gary Roberts takes a shot at goal

Gary Roberts takes a shot at goal

Next up for shooting practice is Eoin Doyle

Next up for shooting practice is Eoin Doyle

Tendayi Darikwa lines up a strike

Tendayi Darikwa lines up a strike

A home supporters flag

A home supporters flag

View of Gigg Lane from the away end

View of Gigg Lane from the away end

The players make their way onto the pitch

The players make their way onto the pitch

Pre match handshakes

Pre match handshakes

Tommy Lee applauds the travelling supporters

Tommy Lee applauds the travelling supporters

Chesterfield boss Paul Cook

Chesterfield boss Paul Cook

The Bury fans

The Bury fans

The ball is on the centre spot

The ball is on the centre spot

The new season is about the get underway

The new season is about the get underway

Drew Talbot and Tom Soares

Drew Talbot and Tom Soares

A beautiful summers day

A beautiful summers day

Shaun Beeley takes a throw in for the home side as the two managers look on

Shaun Beeley takes a throw in for the home side as the two managers look on

Kevin Blackwell shouts orders from the toucnline

Kevin Blackwell shouts orders from the toucnline

Humphreys, Togwell and O'Shea prepare to defend an early corner

Humphreys, Togwell and O’Shea prepare to defend an early corner

Sam Hird shouts instructions to the defenders

Sam Hird shouts instructions to the defenders

The two managers watch the early action

The two managers watch the early action

The referee makes sure Craig Jones take the free kick from the correct spot

The referee makes sure Craig Jones take the free kick from the correct spot

Craig Jones and Gary Roberts

Craig Jones and Gary Roberts

The set piece is defended solidly

The set piece is defended solidly

Goalless at the break

Goalless at the break

A flag on the away end

A flag on the away end

Another view of the away end

Another view of the away end

Gigg Lane from the back corner of the away end

Gigg Lane from the back corner of the away end

Second half kicks off

Second half kicks off

Jay O'Shea puts the Spireites ahead

Jay O’Shea puts the Spireites ahead

The players and fans celebrate the first goal of the new season

The players and fans celebrate the first goal of the new season

"We're gonna bounce in a minute!"

“We’re gonna bounce in a minute!”

Talbot wait to take a throw in

Talbot wait to take a throw in

Cook and Blackwell

Cook and Blackwell

Marc Richards doubles the lead

Marc Richards doubles the lead

Eoin Doyle replaces the scorer of the second goal

Eoin Doyle replaces the scorer of the second goal

The TV gantry

The TV gantry

Roberts and Morsy stand over the ball

Roberts and Morsy stand over the ball

Tendayi Darikwa replaces O'Shea

Tendayi Darikwa replaces O’Shea

Some of the home supporters have seen enough

Some of the home supporters have seen enough

The full time score

The full time score

The players applaud the supporters

The players applaud the supporters

The players applaud and Roberts waves to the fans

The players applaud and Roberts waves to the fans

The perfect start to the new campaign

The perfect start to the new campaign

Back at the Proact Stadium at 7.00

Back at the Proact Stadium at 7.00

One comment

  1. Excellent report, and as a Bury supporter I can only say I’m sorry about the result but your report – which I read in full – and also your images, cheered me up, simply because you obviously enjoyed your day at Gigg Lane. Which is more than I did !! Good luck to you. Games against Chesterfield are always well fought tussles.Your father should be proud of you.

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