We welcome Portsmouth and the Sky Sports to The Banks’s Stadium this evening in a game that IF we win could see us rise 2 positions to 14th in League 1.
This also marks, 2 years today since Dean Smith took over Walsall.
Dean Smith ‘The last time that we appeared on live television, we put in an impressive performance at Shrewsbury but didn`t get the result that we deserved. Hopefully this occasion will see us combine a good display with three points.
It won`t be easy because despite their off-the-field problems, Portsmouth have plenty of quality and know-how in their ranks.
We achieved a winning result down at Fratton Park earlier in the season with two great strikes from Florent Cuvelier and James Baxendale, but we won`t be taking anything for granted’
Walsall Team News:
Walsall have Florent Cuvelier out after aggravating a hamstring injury in the 1-0 New Year’s Day win over Stevenage.
Andy Taylor (groin) and Dean Holden (ankle) are sidelined too, but Febian Brandy returns after a one-match ban.
Player to watch: Jamie Paterson
Despite his inconsitent form this season ‘Pato’ has now scored 3 goals in his last 5 outtings for The Saddlers.
Another goal tonight wouldnt go amiss.
Portsmouth Team News:
Portsmouth welcome back on-loan Paul Benson, who was unavailable to face parent club Swindon on New Year’s Day.
Brian Howard (groin) and Ricardo Rocha and Gabor Gyepes (both hamstring injuries) also missed the 5-0 defeat.
Leading goalscorer Izale Mcleod left the club this week and resigned for MK Dons so this is a major blow to Pompey’s quest for survival.
Player to watch: Paul Benson
That tricky little striker has scored 2 goals already since joining the financially stricken club.
Match Facts & Stats
Portsmouth are a club in turmoil on and off the pitch!
They have failed to win in their last 13 games that have seen them plummet down the league table and they now occupy the last relegation spot (still yet to receive their 10 points deduction)
We should win this one and quite easy but nothing is ever simple being a Walsall fan!
Simon Hooper from Wiltshire is the man in the middle.
He has refereed 22 games so far this season, handing out 56 yellow cards and 3 red!! – FA do like picking controversial refs for TV.
Walsall 3-1 Portsmouth
Preston v WALSALL 13/01/13
PORTSMOUTH v Notts County 12/01/13