Bescot Banter: Walsall continue to improve

Darrell Clarke's Saddlers have seen action twice since our most recent column, with both outings seeing the Reds maintain their unbeaten start to the 2020/21 League Two campaign.

Darrell Clarke.
Darrell Clarke.

The first match saw Walsall play host to Colchester United in a clash in which the Saddlers once again demonstrated their 'bounce-back ability' as frontman Elijah Adebayo curled the ball home in the second-half after Callum Harriott had put the visitors into the lead during the opening 45.

The second match of the week saw Walsall take on Leyton Orient at a sadly deserted Banks's Stadium. The Reds again displayed their ability to keep it together even after falling behind as, despite Danny Johnson netting for the seventh time in eight games, goals from Rory Holden and Elijah Adebayo - the former Fulham man's fifth consecutive home-game goal - were enough to see the Saddlers secure all three points.

Both outings saw Walsall improve upon the performances which preceded them as Darrell Clarke's side continue to grow in to the admittedly young campaign. Promising signs, even in these early stages.

The only real downside of the last seven days is the knee injury which forced Josh Gordon to limp out of the clash with Colchester and sit out the meeting with the Orient. Hopefully, there will be some positive news on that front as the former Leicester City man was seen walking without crutches, although wearing a brace, on Tuesday evening.

As the fixtures arrive at an increased rate during this particularly busy spell of the season, we could really do without losing one of our regular starters, especially as he and his teammates look to be heading into a rich vein of form.

We welcome the recent news that so-called 'Project Big Picture' has been effectively abandoned. It was disappointing to see EFL chairman Rick Parry seemingly forming a part of an agreement which would have seen yet more power handed to already overbearing clubs in the upper reaches of the Premier League.

Whilst it is crucial that clubs from up and down the football pyramid come together to help each other through the Covid-19 crisis, the need for financial assistance should not be allowed to override the need for fairness and an equal say.

For far too long clubs at the top table have been allowed to dictate their own terms with teams at our level being forced to agree with whatever terms are presented with the promise of assistance if and when the brown stuff hits the fan.

Owners and operators of clubs in such high positions would do well to remember that their reaction to a national crisis which has dented the prospects of many clubs through no fault of their own, will live long in the memory and their attempt to grab as much power as possible during such dreadful times is likely to have a lasting legacy.

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