Dean Keates: No doubts Josh Gordon would come good for Walsall
Boss Dean Keates says he has never once doubted the ability of Josh Gordon following the striker’s outstanding performance against Bradford.
The Saddlers looked set to fall to a sixth successive defeat when top scorer Andy Cook was sent off after just six minutes against David Hopkin’s side on Saturday.
But a remarkable team performance saw them defy the odds to produce a stunning 3-2 victory.
Gordon was influential to that outstanding display with the striker netting two goals.
Those strikes took his tally for the season to six.
And Keates believes the summer arrival from Leicester, who was previously at Stafford Rangers, is now ready to show he can score goals regularly in League One.
“There has never been any doubt in my mind about Josh,” the boss said. “You can always see the work-rate is there and the endeavour is there. Those two goals will do him the world of good.
“Yes, we’ve signed him from Leicester. But he had only been there for 14 months.
“Technically he is still a very raw player who has spent the majority of his career in non-league.
“He will be a good player, he will be a great addition for the squad given time.
“He is settling into this football club. But he showed against Bradford what he is about and I think maybe the sending off gave him a little more weight on his shoulders.
“He stood up to it, he had to lead the line on his own and he gave everything for the football club.”
A host of Walsall players shone on Saturday with Liam Roberts, Liam Kinsella, Joe Edwards, Zeli Ismail and Matt Jarvis all in with a shout of being named man-of-the-match.
At the heart of the defence, Jon Guthrie put in a colossal display just a week after he was left out the team that lost at Coventry.
And Keates admitted he was delighted with the 26-year-old.
“Jon had started every game but I made a decision last weekend, I had a chat with him and he took it on board,” the boss added. “He had an opportunity against Bradford, he took a really bad knee in his back just before half-time.
“Going in at half-time he is working around the changing room because he needed to keep mobile, but he took on the information.
“And he pulled an unbelievable block out at the end.”