MX23RW : Tuesday, February 19 01:27:13

Chesterfield's curious contradiction of form

Chesterfield's curious contradiction of form
© Getty Images
Martin Allen's side are on their worst ever winless league run of 19 games – but are 12 games unbeaten.

Chesterfield's draw with Bromley on Tuesday night continued a bizarre run of form which sees the Vanarama National League side setting seemingly contradictory records.

Martin Allen's side are on their worst ever winless league run of 19 games, a sequence which has dropped them into the relegation zone.

But nine straight league draws – matching the record for the top five divisions in English football – have also contributed to a run of 12 games unbeaten in all competitions, the Spireites' longest in 12 years.

Chesterfield's run of form
(PA Graphic)

When the latter figure was put to Allen by Spireites Digital ahead of the Bromley game, he first checked "What is it?" before sighing: "Oh, blimey.

"I can't say I'm proud of that. I'd like to be able to sit here and say it was 12 wins, but no, I'm not proud of it."

Here, Press Association Sport takes a look at the strange set of statistics.

19 league games without a win

Chesterfield have not won a league game since August, when they beat Braintree 1-0 before 3-2 losses to Barrow and Salford sparked a six-game losing run.

Barnet, Hartlepool, Leyton Orient and Boreham Wood all won 1-0 before draws with Dover and Dagenham partially stopped the rot.

The Spireites lost 3-0 to Gateshead and 3-1 to Maidenhead, the only times in the current run they have been beaten by more than a single goal, before their form took its strangest turn yet.

Nine league draws in succession

Allen's men drew 1-1 with Maidstone and 0-0 with Fylde before successive 1-1 draws with FC Halifax Town, Wrexham, Sutton and Harrogate.

A goalless draw with Chesterfield left them still searching for a win and when they drew 1-1 with Eastleigh last Saturday, it saw them match both their own longest winless run in the league and the record for the fifth tier or above of eight successive draws, set by Woking between March 8 and April 21, 2003.

They remained winless against Bromley on Tuesday, but Zavon Hines' last-minute penalty at lesat ensured a 1-1 scoreline and a ninth successive draw.

12 games unbeaten in all competitions

That sequence of draws, combined with progress in the FA Cup, makes for another significant sequence.

Having seen off first Fylde and then Billericay – the latter, almost inevitably, after a replay – it is 12 unbeaten for Allen and his side in all competitions.

That is their longest such sequence since the 2005-06 season, when they went 14 unbeaten in League One with three wins and 11 draws on their way to a 16th-placed finish.

Attempting to assess the run of form, Allen continued on Spireites Digital: "It is confusing. I've said to them sometimes you've got to go through some tough times, the good times will come and it will make the good times even sweeter.

"With these players, I'm sure we can get the results we all crave, and break not a 12-year record of being unbeaten, but I think we can get a run of wins going."


Click here for more stories about Martin Allen

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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City27212474205465
2Liverpool26205159154465
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs26200654252960
4Manchester UnitedMan Utd26156552351751
5Arsenal26155653371650
6Chelsea26155645291650
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2611693433139
8Watford2610793434037
9Everton2796123639-333
10West Ham UnitedWest Ham2696113239-733
11Bournemouth26103133747-1033
12Leicester CityLeicester2695123134-332
13Crystal Palace2676132734-727
14Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2676132839-1127
15Burnley2676132947-1827
16Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2667132234-1225
17Cardiff CityCardiff2674152447-2325
18Southampton2659122844-1624
19Fulham2645172558-3317
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2625191448-3411

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