Walsall 2 Crewe 2 - match report

Walsall blew another 2-0 lead after Crewe snatched a injury-time leveller to continue the Saddlers’ winless run.

Dean Smith

Chucks Aneke’s 90th minute header broke Walsall hearts after Jamie Paterson and Florent Cuvelier put them in control.

Mark Ellis pulled one back for Alex before half time as the Saddlers’ winless run stretched to five.

It was also the third time this season Dean Smith’s men had lost a 2-0 advantage after 2-2 draws with Brentford and Port Vale.

Will Grigg was denied by Alan Martin in the second half and Crewe were fuming after their penalty claims were ignored when Andy Taylor felled Mathias Pogba.

But the Railway men deserved a point after Walsall faded following their blistering start.

George Bowerman was dropped as Grigg returned after international duty in the only change and the Northern Ireland hitman almost made an instant impact when his shot deflected wide after a minute.

Again, the Saddlers started brightly, their vibrant passing outsmarting Crewe as they nursed the ball carefully.

Crewe’s early threat came from Harry Davis’ free kick which Karl Darlow tipped over on 10 minutes but two minutes later the Saddlers took the lead.

Cuveliver’s crunching tackle won the ball by the half way line and his delicious pass sent Paterson clear on the left for the winger to cut inside and guide the ball into the corner.

It was a delightful third goal of the season for Paterson to underline the hosts’ early dominance as they passed Crewe to death.

The visitors offered little with Cuvelier their tormentor-in-chief and on 25 minutes the Stoke loanee doubled the Saddlers’ lead.

After a patient build-up Adam Chambers found the impressive Grigg on the left of the area and his cross was smashed in from four yards by Cuvelier.

Dean Holden was booked was clattering Max Clayton four minutes before the break and two minutes later the visitors grabbed a lifeline.

Luke Murphy tossed in a free kick from the right which missed everyone except Ellis who prodded past Darlow from three yards.

The Alex had wrestled their way back into the game - but not enough to warrant a goal – and Chambers almost restored the two-goal advantage when his low drive skidded wide.

Cuvelier shot over immediately after the re-start and Grigg was thwarted one-on-one by Martin’s outstretched arm on 51 minutes.

But their lead was slender and Darlow preserved it when he beat away Byron Moore’s fierce drive.

The Saddlers couldn’t rediscover their first-half control as the game turned into a scrappy, even, affair.

Bowerman replaced Nicky Featherstone with 17 minutes to go and the Saddlers survived a huge penalty claim from Crewe shortly afterwards.

Pogba turned Andy Taylor and when he cut across the flailing left-back Taylor’s clumsy challenge brought him down.

David Webb immediately waved away Crewe’s protests as the hosts finished the stronger and Abdul Osman blazed over in stoppage time.

But Aneke grabbed the equaliser at the death when he rose to head in Pogba’s cross from four yards.

Comments for: "Walsall 2 Crewe 2 - match report"

Wyrley Saddler

Same old, same old. Is Smith going to take the positives and hail his youngsters again?! It's getting annoying to be honest. I want to win games. Who cares how we play if we can't come home with the 3 points! The players get idle, they sit deep, and Smith makes silly substitutions. We need signings, and everyone knows it apart from Smith. Darlow must be bad luck or something... our form has gone awol since he joined. Bring Grof back please

Big cheese

Yea, lets drop a superior player because "he's bad luck or something"

wyrley saddler

Fair enough. It was a bit of a silly comment.

But i'm not the only one who thinks Darlow isn't any better than Grof or Walker. Forget what I said about luck, facts are he hasn't kept a clean sheet since he joined. Why not use the money to sign a striker or a defender instead?? Surely that would make more sense

ram

Sought out that defence..

matttheknife

It's becoming very frustrating. We are playing some excellent, attractive football & it makes a nice change to the hoof ball we have played over the last couple of years, however yet again we are undone from set pieces.

Taundry played his best game for a while, but always looks one step away from a disaster as it prooved in the dying minutes with the equaliser. However Crewe's first goal aside, we looked in control of the game up intil Featherstone was replaced and our shape dissapeared. If this was a tactical substitution, then the blame rests purely on Deano's shoulders.

I'm not going to start shouting for a change of management or tactics as I admire what Dean is trying to create at Walsall, but there is a lot of work still required on the training ground (especially in defending a set piece). I will continue to keep the faith as for the first time in years I enjoy coming to watch my team play football.

wyrley saddler

The football is excellent for 40 mins. Same story against Shrewsbury. We will never win games with this attitude. Everyone could see Crewe was going to get the equaliser. I love the football, i really do, but it never lasts. We are always terrible in the 2nd half. Why, why, why??? Smith's subs don't seem to help us at all. On the plus side, we are still in a decent position. But it wont last much longer if we don't start winning soon. Keep the passing football, sign a target man, and bring Grof back. Maybe we wouldn't get dominated in the 2nd half of games if we had someone to hold the ball up!!

haleshrew

Could not make it to Portsmouth on Saturday due to work commitments in the a.m. In the p.m. went shopping at Morrisons but could not park because it was full . Instead went up the road to the Banks stadium where there was plenty o.f spaces. I ask you, 3800 for a local derby against Crewe. Joking aside, your team is too good to go down,. I just hope you dont get promoted. Keep playing the way you are and the results will come. As a side swipe can we book 3 sides of your ground now to accommodate all are away fans. when we visit.

SuperSaddlers

Yes Haleshrew you can book the other 3 sides, you do get huge crowds after all. It is a dissapointing crowd though I agree. Considering also Walsall is one of the cheapest match days in league 1.

wyrley saddler

Our attendances have dropped dramatically since Money resigned. Doesn't take much working out does it! Supporters are sick of Bonser selling all our players -- simple. I can understand why fans choose to stay at home.

Shrewsbury: stop pinching yourself because you currently attract more fans. More fans or not, your team doesn't have the quality of Walsall's. And your record attendances are also poorer than Walsall's. So get real, will you. Concentrate on your club, that may/may not avoid relegation