Elijah Adebayo expects battle for Walsall starting spot

Star striker Elijah Adebayo is prepared for 'patient' Caolan Lavery to take his next chance, as he aims to keep his place in the starting XI.

Elijah Adebayo
Elijah Adebayo

The 23-year-old's Saddlers career started slowly last season, before he found impressive form at the beginning of 2020 and carried that through to this season.

His performances have meant experienced striker Lavery has found chances hard to come by, with his last start coming on November 14.

Although Adebayo insists it is a team game, he expects Lavery to stake his claim sooner rather than later.

"It's not necessary about me or another individual, it's about the team collectively," he said.

"We all know how good Lavs is. He's one of the best finishers out of the strikers.

"Last season I had to be patient with my opportunities when they came so I'm guessing he'll be patient and ready for when his time comes.

"It's a squad game. When Flash got injured Rory (Holden) went out on the right to help the team out.

"Whoever the gaffer decides to play, everyone will be raring to go."

Josh Gordon made his return from a medial knee injury at the beginning of December, and despite scoring a penalty on his return, is yet to find his best form.

Gordon, nicknamed 'Flash', and Adebayo flourished together in the 4-2-3-1 formation at the end of last season and before his injury this campaign.

And Adebayo has revealed the pair often exchange notes on striking up that potent partnership again.

"Flash is a very good player and we've missed him," Adebayo added.

"His energy, his work-rate, his ability on the ball. It's great to have him back, we're delighted.

"We know what he's going to offer. We speak on and off the pitch and know where each other is going to be and what type of run to make.

"We spend a lot of time talking about improving our game and trying to make each other better.

"We missed him and we're glad to have him back."

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