Caretaker Manager describes game of two halves...
JON Whitney, one of three Caretaker Managers at the club, admitted that Chesterfield deserved their late equaliser on Saturday to force an FA Cup Second Round replay.
The Saddlers edged in front at the Proact Stadium thanks to a Richard Wood own goal, following an enterprising run from Jason Demetriou.
But in added time Sam Morsy bundled home a late leveller meaning both sides go into tonight’s FA Cup Third Round Draw.
“It was a fair result in the end” insisted Whitney. “Mark [Smith] has got them well drilled and we didn’t underestimate what they are capable of.
“They’ve got some good experienced players. Ebanks-Blake and Novak up top are a handful for any team and the conditions made it into a proper FA Cup tie.
“People probably think we can’t mix it up and battle but we’re where we are because we can play good football but we can also hang in there when we have to.
“They had some good chances and I know with the goal we’re disappointed because I think we switched off a bit. But like we always say every mistake we make, we made it together.
“We can’t get overly happy after Tuesday night when we win a game and then be too disappointed on Saturday because we’ve drawn. It’s about finding that healthy balance and not getting too emotional.”
Despite the blustery conditions in Derbyshire, it was the Saddlers who adapted quicker and went ahead after 19 minutes.
George Evans went close to doubling our lead shortly after but Whitney conceded the Spireites forced themselves back into the game in the second period.
“We got into great areas and I thought we opened them up first half,” he added.
“Second half, playing with the wind, I thought the conditions would help us a bit more but they helped them.
“We couldn’t attack the ball because of the wind, it was dropping into the middle third and Ebanks-Blake was getting on it.
“At the end of the day it’s a fair result and we’ll take it into the replay. We dug in and were hoping we could see it through but I think myself and Mark [Smith] will be happy to plan for the replay.
“It’s been an emotional and tiring week.
“But I think if we’d have started the week and someone said we’ll still be in the hat for the third round draw and you’ll win at Shrewsbury to go third in the league, we’d have taken that.
“We’re going to sit down on Monday as a club and get a contingency plan together.
“All we were asked to do was keep the ship afloat, try and push on and sustain this momentum.
“We’ve done that, the players have been fantastic for myself, John and Neil. We’re super proud of them and we’ll see where it takes us