Chesterfield record fifth straight win in action-packed victory against Halifax - how the action unfolded

James Grimes in action against Halifax. Picture: Tina Jenner.
James Grimes in action against Halifax. Picture: Tina Jenner.

The Spireites led 2-0 after 23 minutes thanks to goals from Will Grigg and Tyrone Williams before Millenic Alli halved the deficit.

The Shaymen levelled with 20 minutes remaining when Tom Naylor was judged to have fouled Tylor Golden and Luke Summerfield scored the resulting penalty.

Referee Aaron Jackson lost control of the game in the second-half with some dubious decisions for both teams and he sent off Blues boss Cook and midfielder Naylor, as well as Halifax’s Adam Senior.

But that was not the end of the drama as substitute Joe Quigley raced through and made it 3-2 in the 91st minute to cap a chaotic second 45.

The victory is Chesterfield’s fifth on the bounce and they remain top of the table by three points.

Cook made one change from the win against Ebbsfleet United with Darren Oldaker replacing the suspended Michael Jacobs.

Chesterfield deservedly led at the break but they will have been kicking themselves for allowing the visitors to get back into it.

Against a side with the best defensive record in the league having conceded just seven goals so far this season, the Spireites will have wanted a quick start and they got just that, with a superb passage of play ending with Grigg turning in Mandeville’s low cross inside two minutes.

The Blues threatened a second when Grigg’s clever flick sent Ryan Colclough clear but his attempt at squaring for Oldaker was off the mark and the chance was lost.

But they soon doubled their lead on 23 minutes when Mandeville, who was playing right-back again, grabbed his second assist of the game when his free-kick delivery was headed in by Williams.

The hosts piled on the pressure and came close to bagging a third when Colclough slipped a pass into Armando Dobra in the box but his shot was well blocked.

And then three minutes later Halifax halved the deficit after an error at the back allowed Alli to run through on goal and slot into the bottom corner.

The match became a little bit scrappy after that, and there were some head-scratching decisions made by referee Jackson, who came over to speak to a frustrated Cook at one point, and he was booed off at half-time.

Halifax made a strong start to the second-half and Harry Tyrer was forced into making a save from Golden from distance.

Chesterfield sparked back into life around the hour-mark but Halifax goalkeeper Sam Johnson made an excellent save from Mandeville’s curling strike which was heading for the top corner.

And then they thought they had scored, with Jamie Grimes believing he had bundled the ball in at the back post, but it was controversially not given and it remained 2-1 with 25 minutes remaining.

It was an action-packed last 20 minutes as Halifax drew level when Naylor was judged to have brought down Golden and substitute Summerfield found the corner from the penalty spot.

Chesterfield then lost their manager from the touchline as Cook was shown a red card by Jackson for his reaction to what was a clear foul on one of his players.

And on 76 minutes the Spireites were a man down on the pitch as Naylor thought he should have been awarded a free-kick and Jackson produced a second yellow card for him for what he seemingly deemed was dissent, much to the annoyance of the home faithful.

Despite being down to 10-men, Williams came close to heading Chesterfield back in front from Mandeville’s free-kick but it went narrowly wide.

The drama continued as referee Jackson showed another red card - this time for Halifax’s Senior on 87 minutes - which meant both teams were down to 10-men.

And as seven minutes were added-on, substitute Quigley raced clear to finish past Johnson to put Town back in front and send the home fans wild. Another late goal. Another comeback. And that’s the third time Quigley has come off the bench to score a winner already this season.

It wasn’t the game we were expecting with Chesterfield 2-0 up after 23 minutes, but they found a way to win to secure their fifth successive victory.

Chesterfield: Tyrer; Mandeville, Williams, Grimes, Freckleton; Jones, Naylor; Oldaker (Berry, 70); Dobra (Banks, 80), Colclough; Grigg (Quigley, 70).

Unused subs: Palmer, Curtis