Following Tuesday evening’s 2-1 home victory against Barnet – in which skipper Jamie Sendles-White scored his first Aldershot Town goal and Mo Bettamer netted his tenth of the season to secure the three points – the Shots take a break from National League action to host James Rowe’s Chesterfield in the last 16 of the FA Trophy.
Rob Worrall previews the game:
Lewis Kinsella, Craig Tanner and Ross McCormack all continue to make good progress in their rehabilitation from long term injuries. George Fowler has also been back in training following a knee problem that has kept him out of the last three games. Loanee Goalkeeper Brad James has returned to Middlesbrough this week, whilst another loanee, Dinesh Gillela (from AFC Bournemouth) made his debut in the Right Back position in Tuesday’s game against Barnet.
Nickname: The Spireites
Manager: James Rowe
Stadium: Technique Stadium
2019/20 National League Final Position: 19th (20th on PPG – 1.15)
37-year-old Rowe is a name that Aldershot Town fans will know well, having not only a current midfielder with that exact name but also Chesterfield’s Rowe is a former Assistant Manager with The Shots under former manager Gary Waddock.
Waddock and Rowe were successful during their time at the club, guiding The Shots to two successive play-off positions in 2016–17 and 2017-18, before Rowe left Aldershot Town in January 2019, by mutual consent.
In November 2019, Rowe was back in football management and was appointed Manager of National League North side Gloucester City. He started well this season with four consecutive wins, equalling their best league start in 78 years. However a year on, Rowe decided to leave Gloucester to become manager of National League club Chesterfield, signing a contract through the end of the 2022-23 season. Since arriving at the Technique Stadium, Rowe has guided Chesterfield away from the National League relegation zone, whilst making a number of changes to personnel.
Since Rowe’s arrival a number of players have arrived, including four that were with him at Gloucester; Defenders Gavin Gunning and Alex Whittle, Midfielder George Carline and Striker Akwasi Asante, who has netted seven goals already since joining the Spireites. Rowe has also brought in a several players on loan, including; Keeper Adam Pryzbek (Ipswich Town), Midfielder Jack Clarke (Aston Villa) and Striker Marcus Dinanga (Stevenage). There have been departures too, including Tyler Denton, Kyle Letheren and Alex Kiwomya, but with so many players incoming, Rowe has furloughed a number of players that are not currently in his first-team plans.
The Spireites come into the FA Trophy tie in decent form. In addition to their 4th Round penalty shoot-out victory at Boston United, they have won 5, drawn 3 and lost just 1 National League game since Rowe’s arrival, which shows a marked improvement from their prior form, having lost 7 of their opening 9 league matches.
Saturday’s referee is Adrian Quelch. This season, he has taken charge of 7 National League matches, showing 31 Yellow Cards and 1 Red Card.
The match will be streamed and available HERE on ‘Shots TV Live’ with Presenter Mark Butler, Commentator Rob Worrall and some special guests. BBC Radio Surrey Sport will also be covering the match with live online commentary available on the day.