This season has revolved much about big summer signing Marc Richards, writes Jonathan Kirby.
He’s come in for a bit of stick lately from some supporters, mainly because he hasn’t scored in over nine hours of football.
I don’t think it’s as simple as that, he hasn’t had the service that he would normally thrive on. I don’t think he deserves that stick but, nevertheless, I want to see Jack Lester and Armand Gnanduillet paired up front because they give more of a lift and a threat to the side.
Richards’ season has been hampered by injuries and the departure of Jordan Bowery.
I don’t understand what people expect him to do with the limited service he gets. How many times does he get a ball into his feet?
In my opinion, a lack of attacking drive behind him means that Chesterfield aren’t getting the ball beyond the striker. This means that everything is playing behind him, therefore the striker, with probably more goals in League Two than anybody in the past four seasons, predominantly has his back to goal.
Bowery ran around all day long and stretched defences, so I feel he was a ready-made strike partner for Richards until his move to the Premier League.
In my eyes, Richards is a forward that wants to get on the end of moves and score goals; not chase lost causes.
The lack of wingers means not many crosses, and everything seems to be played behind Richards, and without enough purpose.
His goal record at Port Vale suggests he will score lots of goals if the other ten men on the pitch create chances for him.
I think it’s also important to mention that when Chesterfield won four straight league games, Richards played as the loan striker.
He set up the winner against Oxford, both goals at Port Vale, scored the winner at Plymouth, and was involved in three of the goals in a 4-1 win against Cheltenham.
This was when Chesterfield played their most attractive and patient football – when there was very few long balls!