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James O’Connor: Walsall needed a reset

By Liam Keen | Walsall FC | Published:

Former Walsall defender James O’Connor believes the League Two ‘reset’ will put the club in good stead as they aim to build for a return to League One.

James O'Connor in action for Walsall

The 35-year-old, who is the assistant manager at Kidderminster Harriers, spent three seasons with the Saddlers from 2017 – becoming a favourite with the fans during his time at the Banks’s Stadium.

Walsall’s first season back in League Two ended with a mid-table finish and O’Connor believes taking that ‘step back’ and reassessing will serve the club well.

“I don’t know Darrell Clarke personally but on the back of a disappointing season last year it’s about rebuilding,” he said.

“On the back of this pandemic as well, the club needed to stabilise.

“If you get time as a manager that’s when you will get judged fairly so at Walsall they can use this time to reset.

“I think it will reset the whole of football to be honest, in several different ways.

“Next season hopefully they go into it and really kick on, to get back to where they need to be.

“Walsall have a great history and a good fan base but sometimes you need to take a step back, although you don’t want to, to go again.

“With the new chairman there seems to be a better feeling around the club, which is good to see and I really hope they can capitalise on that now.

“When the football boom starts, hopefully they can take advantage of it.”

Liam Keen

By Liam Keen
Sports Reporter

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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