Chesterfield 0-3 Blades - report
The Blades comfortably completed a league double over local rivals Chesterfield with an emphatic display at the Proact Stadium.
An early goal from Alex Baptiste set the tone, whilst Che Adams and Billy Sharp helped themselves to goals in front of a sold-out travelling support of 2,829 Unitedites.
Manager Adkins names an unchanged team for the third week running. The same 18 named for the Gillingham game last week took their places at the Proact Stadium.
United won three corners in the opening four minutes and opened the scoring with the last of them. Flynn delivered to the back post, Edgar rose higher than his marker to head back into the box where BAPTISTE forced the ball over the line from close range.
Chesterfield's first serious foray into United's half came after going behind. Talbot's effort from Novak's cross was weak and O'Shea's on-target free-kick from 20 yards was blocked by Baptiste.
Liddle was booked for a block on Done on 13 minutes and just two minutes later the Chesterfield skipper did the same to Basham but this time there was no card forthcoming.
A slow period in the middle of the half saw the Blades barely troubled. Long made a rash decision to rush out of his goal but the ball was cleared, however, Chesterfield goalkeeper Lee was not so fortunate on 35 minutes. He was out of position when he scuffed a routine clearance straight to ADAMS who rolled the ball into the empty net from 30 yards.
From this goal to half-time, Chesterfield should have considered them fortunate to just be two goals behind as the remainder of the half saw the Blades dominant. Flynn and Sharp both had powerful goalbound efforts blocked, whilst Raglan's deft header prevented Sharp getting a sight of goal. The home side also almost contributed further to their downfall - they failed to clear on numerous occasions before Flynn volleyed over and in injury-time there was another dodgy clearance from Lee.
Early in the second half Chesterfield's Novak saw his effort deflected by Baptiste but Long made a comfortable save and the Blades were quickly back on the offensive. Flynn flicked wide before a third was added just before the hour.
Basham was enjoying success on the right but it was Coutts who got around the back on that side, pulling back for an unmarked SHARP to turn the ball into the corner of the net at the end of the ground housing Blades fans.
Long turned an effort from O'Shea around a post on 66 minutes and Lee did likewise from Flynn's deflected effort. The Chesterfield goalkeeper wouldn't have been able to do anything about Done's curler on 82 minutes but the ball clipped the top of the net.
Slew, on as a substitute, missed the target when faced with former Blades youth team-mate Long on 82 minutes, whilst the closing stages were played out without further drama as United chalked up a third consecutive clean sheet. Very late on a piece of skill from Woolford saw Sharp almost bundled into the path of another goal, Lee made the save but the leading scorer thought a penalty should have been the decision - literally 10 seconds before the final whistle.
Chesterfield: Lee, Hird, Liddle, O'Shea, Novak, Raglan, Dimaio (Slew 60), Anderson, Banks, Talbot, Ariyibi.
Unused: Ebanks-Blake, Humphreys, Donohue, Chapman, Simons, Orgel.
Blades: Long, Basham, Flynn (Cuvelier 76), Coutts, Sharp, Done (Woolford 88), McEveley, Baptiste, Adams (Calvert-Lewin 83), Edgar. Hammond.
Unused: Howard, Sammon, McGahey, Whiteman.