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Darrell Clarke calls on Walsall strikers to provide goals

By Liam Keen | Walsall FC | Published:

Walsall manager Darrell Clarke has called on his strikers to take more responsibility and get amongst the goals after drawing another blank against Leyton Orient.

Darrell Clarke

Midfielder Stuart Sinclair scored the only goal for the Saddlers in the loss, where Clarke played 4-2-3-1 with Rory Gaffney leading the line.

It was the first time this season that his side played a lone striker with 4-4-2 and 5-3-2 his favoured formations so far.

The decision from Clarke to make another tactical switch was to overload the centre of the park with extra midfielder.

And the boss believes tactically he wasn't at fault and that his players need to do more.

"Let's not beat around the bush, the striker's are not scoring goals are they," he said.

"I don't think there was anything tactically wrong with the game, we've had the majority of possession.

"I think we've had the majority of good areas on the pitch to win the game.

"I'm the first one to hold my hands up if I think it tactically wasn't the right way, which maybe was the case a little bit at times last week but this week I think the players have to take responsibility.

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"Certainly with the areas we've worked the ball in the final third and dangerous players getting on the ball to do that little bit more.

"You concede the goals we concede you're not going to win football matches."

Goalscorer Sinclair notched his second for the club since joining the club and says the lack of goals in the team puts pressure on everyone, not just the strikers.

“It puts pressure on everybody but it’s not just the strikers job," he added.

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"This is League Two, how many set pieces do you have?

"We have multiple set pieces, we need to put demands on ourselves from set pieces as well and be more clinical.

"I had a volley and I should have hit the target, that’s not good enough so I need to work on that and all put demands on ourselves to make sure we hit the target."

The 31-year-old played in the number 10 role behind Gaffney, a position he hasn't played before in a Saddlers shirt.

"It's not a role he hasn't played for me, he's played plenty of times for Bristol Rovers," Clarke added.

"He makes good forward runs, he's got himself another goal – Sinclair is the least of my problems at the minute."

Liam Keen

By Liam Keen
Sports Reporter - @LiamKeen_Star

Sports journalist at the Express & Star, primarily covering Walsall FC and grassroots sport across the Black Country and Staffordshire. Got a story? Get in touch on 01902 319456.

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