With all league games under threat it is not sure whether walsalls friday excursion up to Hartlepool will be a wasted journey or not. Given the accuracy of the weather forecast though there is every chance the game will be on.
Dickie Dosh and the team will face a warm reception in a cold climate. As the leagues in form team face our table toppers. Hartlepool will be keen to prove there championship creditals and close the gap down to three points. Of course a Walsall win would see a healthy nine point lead over Hartlepool.
As the game builds both teams have been singing a similar tune, ‘it’s going to be tough’ also’ nothing will be decided by saturdays result’ both statements are true but in terms of confidence for the run in it is a massive game even if you forget about the points.
Michael Dobson has joined in issuing a rallying call for the team too step up there performances as they enter a make or break period. Dean Keates has followed suit whilst Chris Westwood has added his fondness for the monkey hangers but has also stated he would be glad to score the winning goal.
Hartlepool Team News:
After a period of injuries and last weeks suspension of Richie Barker, Hartlepool look to be at full strength. There defence has been as mean as ours with Nelson the main man. Despite the suspensions and injuries Hartlepool have been going strenth to strenght after a shaky start. They are the form team to beat.
Player to watch: Ritche Barker
Signed from Mansfield for 80k, the striker who has 16 goals to his name will work our back four well. We managed to keep hm quiet at the Bescot stadium earlier in the season when he came with Mansfield but with improved service the job might be a little tougher.
Walsall Team News:
Although Alan Picken got another 90 minutes under hos belt in the reserve game at Barnsley, he still needs more matches before been ready. Other centre halfs Ian Roper and Anthony Gerrard should be fit if not Dann will be alongside Chris Westwood with Geordie Lyall making his debut. In midfield all seem to have a clean bill of health if not a good run of form DD could pick from a number of combinations, willCraig Pead get another run at central midfield been the biggest query.
Up front two from Butler, Sam and Cederqvist.
Player to watch: Clayton Ince
If Clayton ever needed to bounce back with a clean sheet this is the one. Last weeks school boy error cost points and whilst nobody can doubt his ability a clean sheet is vital if we are going to take anything out of this game.
Match Facts & Stats
The form book goes out of the window in these types of games, just as well really as we would be second rate also rans as things stand.
We always get s**t ref’s and saturday we have another who hasn’t covered himself in glory when been referee to the saddlers.
For the first time in the league this season Walsall go into the game as under dogs, most Saddlers would take the draw now if offered and I am no different.
Friday 16th Feb 2007 sky cameras come to Bescot to watch us play Lincoln another crunch match. How we prepare for that game may well be influenced by saturdays result.