Our very own graphics designer Ryan Humphries has given us his match report from today’s abject 3-0 defeat against Salford.
The Saddlers played out an incredibly boring first half, with few chances for either side, but certainly more than a fair share of poor refereeing decisions.
Salford dominated the opening minutes of the game, throwing men forward at the Walsall goal for the first 20 minutes, with not much to show for it.
On the 21st minute, Salford took the lead through a poor piece of defending, combined with poor refereeing, when after a scrap in the box the ball was seemingly kicked out of Liam Roberts hands, and into the goal. 0-1.
Following this, an incredibly unentertaining twenty minutes followed, with the game starting to kick into life only around the 40th minute. The saddlers had chance after chance, with Wes McDonald coming close from the edge of the box.
Shortly after this, Wes McDonald involved again, beating his man and providing a cut-back screaming to be tapped in, but it was easy to clear for the Salford defence, with the first half settling once again to a boring finish.
The second half started, with the saddlers on the front foot, but just like the first half failing to find a route through the Salford defence, with a quick free-kick by Holden leading to another controversial decision, with the referee giving a goal kick much to the dismay of many saddlers fans.
But this didn’t last for long, with Salford quickly finding a way through the saddlers defence. A shot from the edge of the box led to a brilliant Liam Roberts save, which so unfortunately bounced straight to a Salford player, whose shot was blocked by Roberts, who couldn’t quite do enough to keep it out. 0-2.
After a slow period for both sides, Alfie Bates enters the pitch, with immediate effect. The saddlers start to get the ball on the floor, with Bates seeming to be in control of the match, playing the ball everywhere, and commanding others. A real player to watch out for.
Shortly after this, around 65 minutes into the game as the saddlers are building momentum, Josh Gordon finds himself open i the edge of the box, releasing a rocket that thunders against the crossbar, and the attack dies down, with Salford now in possession.
A quick break following this results in Salford’s number 3 sticking it past Roberts. 0-3.
With the saddlers trying to push for a consolation late on, another poor decision from the referee met with protest from the saddlers fans. James Clarke’a burst of pace into the box was met by a clear trip from a Salford defender, but nothing given.
Minutes later, a nice link up between substitutes Alfie Bates and James Hardy was met with a simple save from Salford ‘keeper Kyle Letheren.
The final ten minutes, were all much of the same: lots of Alfie Bates passes, little chances for either side, and a couple of poor refereeing decisions.
Overall, a poor game for the saddlers where we got forward, but couldn’t show any attacking prowess. Liam Roberts making some more good saves, but poor defending and awareness led us to concede the three goals we did.
L. Roberts – 6
Sadler – 5
Clarke – 6
Scarr – 6
Jules – 5
Liddle – 4
McDonald – 6
Holden – 5
Sinclair – 7
Gordon – 7
Adebayo – 4
Bates – 7 (my MOTM)
Cockerill-Mollett – 5
Hardy – 6