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Walsall ace gunning for his home-town club

Walsall | Sport | Published:

Walsall midfielder James Baxendale is targeting game-time as he gets set to face his hometown club.

But the talented ace insists his attitude will remain the same whether he is on the pitch, on the bench or in the stands.

The 22-year-old completed a rare 90-minute appearance in last weekend's goalless draw at Gillingham, after becoming accustomed to either starting as a substitute or being withdrawn early when handed a rare starting role.

Now he wants more of the same, but he insists he will not let frustration get the better of him should boss Dean Smith have other ideas.

"Personally I feel like I have performed well when I have played," he said. "We have got some good results.

"It was nice to complete 90 minutes on Saturday and obviously you want more, that is what you train hard for and work for, to get the rewards at the weekend.

"That is the game. You do everything in the week in training because that is where you improve.

"But I always put it in in training and your attitude has to stay the same, just as it is whether you win or lose.

"When you are in the team or out of the team you have to keep a constant, not get too excited or too disappointed. You can only go out there and give the best performance you can give."

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Baxendale was born in Thorne, an area of Doncaster, and spent a year as a player with Rovers after being released by Leeds.

But he made just three substitute appearance for his hometown side before moving to the Banks's Stadium, where he has threatened to kick-start his career without cementing a place in Dean Smith's starting line-up.

"It's my home town more than my old club, I was only there for a year," he said.

"I was a first year pro there and I was at Leeds for longer.

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"I still live in Doncaster in the summer. My home is there and I go back quite regularly so I will have a lot of friends and family there at the game – Doncaster fans who will want tickets in the Walsall end!

"I look forward to the games against Donny because it means a little bit to me."

"They have had an up and down start to the season and hopefully we can add to that by getting a good result.

"I think the summer (after relegation) was a bit unsettling for them and I don't know if that had a knock-on effect for the start of the season but they have a lot of the team who were there last season and you would expect them to kick on at some point."

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