This week has so far seen Chesterfield and Grimsby Town booking their places in the National League play-off semi-finals. While Notts County and Halifax Town have fallen by the wayside, it’s setting things up nicely for this weekend’s National League play-off semi-finals.
Chesterfield produce the goods against Halifax Town
While much of their season has been inconsistent, Chesterfield finally came up with the goods with a well-earned 2-1 away win at Halifax Town. Most pundits would have had Halifax down to win the National League play-off quarter-final, but Chesterfield managed to put an end to their run of four games without a win.
It was a dramatic turnaround for Paul Cook’s team who came agonisingly close to missing out on the play-offs after a dip in form at the end of the season. However, Danny Rowe announced his triumphant return to the team after injury by heading home a corner from Jeff King in the 19th minute.
Chesterfield held onto their single goal advantage until half-time and the 66th minute saw ex-Halifax player Jeff King doubling the lead with a fine goal from distance. From here, Halifax were quick to fight back with Matt Stenson clawing a goal back just two minutes later.
However, there were to be no last minute heroics and Chesterfield clung onto their victory. This sets up a treat of a National League semi-final against Solihull Moors this Sunday. Solihull will be the favourites having finished the season five places and 13 points ahead of Chesterfield, but truly anything can happen in the National League playoffs.
Grimsby Town win a thriller against Notts County
Game of the round had to be Grimsby’s incredible 2-1 victory away at Notts County in the National League play-off semi-finals. It was a bitterly fought game that saw Notts County only claiming the advantage in the 73th minute thanks to a Ruben Rodrigues’ penalty strike.
From here, it looked like the goal would be enough to win it for the hosts, but Grimsby Town produced an incredible display in the closing stages of the game. Gavan Holohan somehow managed to scramble the ball over the line a full six minutes into stoppage time that saw the game go into extra time.
Both sides had chances that they failed to convert in extra time, and it looked like the game would be decided by penalties. However, all of this changed when Mani Dieseruvwe - a late Grimsby substitute - got a slight touch on a free-kick that ended up in the back of the net in the 119th minute.
It was a thrilling win for the Mariners who’ll have to be back to their best when they take on Wrexham this Saturday. Wrexham gained a bye to the National League play-off semi-finals due to finishing in second place in the table behind league champions Stockport County.