Shakers march on to five straight wins, undefeated in six, with a late Tom Pope strike
Tom Pope’s 88th minute match winner secured all three points for the Shakers against a resilient Chesterfield side.
Zeli Ismail netted his first league goal in a Bury shirt on 41 minutes, before the away side hit back with a close range finish from Kristian Dennis three minutes later.
Substitute Tom Walker delivered an outstanding cross for Pope to head home the winner in an even second half.
The Shakers began the game in a positive manner as Ismail rattled the nervy Chesterfield defence. A delicious ball over the defenders from Tom Soares put Ismail through on goal; the 22-year-old brought the ball under his spell but his lob over Ryan Fulton fell inches wide of the post.
Dennis should really have given the visitors the lead on 13 minutes. The ball was presented to him on a plate inside the six yard box but he could not connect with it as his shot rolled away and out of danger.
The away side were awarded a free kick just inches outside the penalty box after a late tackle by Jacob Mellis on 39 minutes. The resulting free kick was smashed against the post by Conor Wilkinson, leaving Ben Williams stranded behind his five man wall.
Two minutes later and a direct ball from Williams, plus a flick on from Pope beat the hesitant Spireites defence. With a bit of luck the ball fell to Ismail, and the pacey winger finished past Fulton in style to open the scoring.
However, it did not take long for Dennis to find the equaliser. Wilkinson threatened down the left with his low ball into the penalty box, Dennis popped up inside the area to tap in a messy leveller past Williams to take the teams into the break at 1-1.
Chances came few and far between in the second half for both sides. Gboly Ariyibi had the greatest chance for the visitors in the second half; the Chesterfield winger shifted the ball away from Antony Kay and there was a golden opportunity for him to pull the trigger but he opted to play the ball out to Dennis. Ariyibi’s pass was too heavy and struggled to find the Chesterfield goalscorer, to the annoyance of the visiting supporters.
The decisive moment of the game came on 88 minutes. Tom Walker lost the ball to Ariyibi before he atoned for his error by winning the ball back, he drove the ball forward down the left flank before unleashing a precise cross onto the head of Pope. Bury’s top goalscorer directed the ball goalwards and past Fulton for the crucial match winner.
Tom Anderson prevented James Vaughan from extending the advantage when he was in the right place at the right time to clear the ball off the line late on.
Pope’s last gasp winner extends the Shakers’ winning run to five games, and moves them up to 2nd in the SkyBet League One table ahead of their trip south to Milton Keynes on Tuesday evening.
Attendance: 3,494 (482 away fans)
Bury’s starting line-up: Williams, Jones, Leigh, Kay, Maher, Ismail, Hope (Danns 61), Soares (Etuhu 65), Mellis (Walker 73), Pope, Vaughan
Unused subs: Tutte, Dudley, Bryan, Rachubka
Chesterfield’s starting line-up: Fulton, McGinn (Dimaio 76), Graham, Hird, Liddle, Nolan, Dennis, Anderson, Wilkinson (Gardner 85), O’Shea (Evatt 90), Ariyibi
Unused subs: Mitchell, Maguire, German, Parkin