Aaron McCarey bids to cool Walsall race row

Former Walsall goalkeeper Aaron McCarey today moved to appease Saddlers fans over his victory celebration following Wolves’ derby win at the Banks’s Stadium.

Wolves goalkeeper Aaron McCarey
Wolves goalkeeper Aaron McCarey

The ex-Saddlers loanee, who was an unused Wolves substitute on Saturday, took to Twitter to speak of his ‘respect’ for Walsall after upsetting fans with his post-match reaction to the visitors’ 3-0 win.

McCarey’s celebrations resulted in a confrontation with Saddlers goalkeeper Richard O’Donnell and brought criticism from home fans following a game that was already heated.

Wolves complained to Walsall and the FA after goalkeeper Carl Ikeme and defender George Elokobi claimed they had been racially abused by a small number of home fans.

McCarey, who played 14 times on loan for Walsall last season, said in a series of tweets: “Just to clarify I have huge respect to Walsall for giving me my chance in league football.

“I was just buzzing for Carl because of the abuse he took. All the best for the rest of the season and I sincerely hope use (sic) make the play-offs. Great manager and great set of players.”

The Saddlers return to action against Crewe tonight with boss Dean Smith claiming one win is all they need to get back on course.

They are aiming to end a seven-match winless run and keep alive their chance of reaching the play-offs when they host the Alex at the Banks’s.

Smith felt the performance, if not the result, in Saturday’s 3-0 derby defeat to Wolves showed his team are not far from ending their frustrating slump. And he has urged his players to concentrate on the basics for the visit of Crewe, who currently lie in the League One relegation zone.

“We just need a win and after Saturday I feel there is light at the end of the tunnel,” said Smith.

“The scoreline suggested it was a one-sided game but I felt it was far from that.

“What we need to do against Crewe is put in a similar performance but with better finishing and slightly better defending.

“If we do that and get a win, we can start building again from there.”