Danny Guthrie: Everyone at Walsall needs to step up
Midfielder Danny Guthrie claims the responsibility for fixing Walsall’s woes in front of goal can’t just lie with the club’s strikers.
Saddlers head to Colchester tomorrow aiming to snap a five-game winless streak in League Two.
It is a run which has seen them slide to 21st in the table brought a rapid end to the honeymoon period for new boss Darrell Clarke with the cause, primarily, his team’s inability to find the net.
Walsall have scored just three goals in six league fixtures to date and only once in their previous four matches, with Caolan Lavery the only forward to have gotten off the mark.
But Guthrie, fit again after the hamstring injury which forced him to sit out several matches in the opening month, believes it is wrong just to focus on the men up front.
“We can’t just look at the strikers if we are not scoring goals,” he said. “We all have to look at ourselves. Are we giving them enough service? Are we giving them enough chances? Is everyone chipping in?
“The lads who have played up front this season work so hard for the team.
“Perhaps they need to be a bit more selfish and just think about goals. They are doing such a good job defensively they are probably knackered when they get the ball.”
Former Newcastle and Blackburn man Guthrie brings valuable experience and a cool head to a Saddlers dressing room still developing its identity following a summer of major change.
The 32-year-old sees it as his duty, as one of the elder statesmen, to ensure younger members keep the faith.
“It’s up to us to help the young lads who have maybe never been in this position before, when you are in a slump and you can’t quite put your finger on why and things like that,” he said.
“You just have to keep doing the right things and it will turn. There is no need to go pressing the panic button or anything like that. It is still really early and we have shown glimpses this season we can be a really good team.”
Guthrie continued: “You just keep doing the things you believe in and it will turn, there is no secret. To be honest, I have played in teams that have struggled to score and I have played in teams that have struggled to stop them going in.
“I would rather play in a team which is struggling to score. If you are shipping loads of goals, you are in trouble. Every day we keep working. We know we are not far away but sooner or later we have to stop speaking about it and do it.”
Colchester sit 14th, just three points better off than the Saddlers but in decent form having recorded three wins in their last four matches, including a 3-2 Leasing.com Trophy win at Gillingham on Tuesday.