Darrell Clarke: I won't let Walsall season peter out

Walsall manager Darrell Clarke has insisted he won’t let the season ‘peter out’ after losses to Carlisle and Morecambe dented the club’s play-off hopes.

Darrell Clarke
Darrell Clarke

The consecutive defeats to the two struggling sides leaves the Saddlers 14th in League Two and 11 points adrift of seventh.

While the club’s chances of making a late play-off charge have slimmed, Clarke is adamant that the season won’t fizzle out.

“I won’t let it peter out – there’s lads fighting for contracts and what not,” he said.

“The group’s not like that, it’s a very good group.

“We have to get better so they need my help and support but there’s no problem with the effort and commitment.

“That all gets monitored on GPS, it’s just being better.

“It’s all good and well doing it on the training pitch but you have to do it at a match.

“We have some young lads out there that aren’t experienced in the animosity that you can sometimes get and you have to get through it.

“It’s no good feeling sorry for yourself and crying in a corner.

“I’ve been there, seen it, done it - got the t-shirt. I’ll build a siege mentality within the group.

“It’s about getting a lot better.

“There’s a lot of points to play for this season and we have tough games coming up.”

Walsall have a 14-point gap over bottom-placed Stevenage and with both the play-offs and relegation unlikely, Clarke is keen to give some younger players a chance in the remaining months of the campaign.

“They’ll be younger lads getting opportunities at the football club, as they have done this season,” he added.

“I’m building a football club but at the minute I keep building and then the blocks keep getting knocked down, which can happen.

“What we have to do is stick together as a group and keep working away and eventually, over a period of time, the fans can start enjoying the football on a more regular basis.

“We only look at and care about our own job and I think we’re shooting ourselves in the foot on numerous occasions this season.

“Until we start cutting that out, we’ll be no-where near the top half of this table.

“We have to do that and tidy up loads of areas, but the buck stops with me and my staff.

“That’s for us to help and support the players as much as we possibly can.

“Make them strong, more organised, manager picking better selections - all the bits and pieces that come into it that will help us win football games.”

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