Walsall boss Matt Taylor hails Brendan Kiernan after strong start

Boss Matt Taylor has hailed Brendan Kiernan for being one of Walsall’s ‘most consistent’ and hard-working performers so far this season.

Brendan Kiernan
Brendan Kiernan

Kiernan, signed in the summer from Harrogate Town, has started all seven of the Saddlers’ League Two games thus far.

He was looking to continue that run at Newport County today, with Taylor impressed by the 28-year-old’s commitment out of possession and growing confidence with the ball at his feet.

“Brendan’s been one of the most consistent members of the squad from the beginning of the season, with his performances. He just needed confidence,” said Taylor.

“He was identified early on as a potential target.

“Jamie (Fullarton, technical director) and I – predominantly Jamie – worked very hard to secure his services at the club.

“I’ve been really happy with Brendan. He’s a player that can play anywhere across the front.

“If you look at statistics from the first seven games, he’s been one of the most consistent players on the pitch.”

Kiernan had been a mainstay on the left for Walsall before featuring in the No.10 role in last weekend’s win over Mansfield Town.

He has chipped in with one goal and two assists so far.

On whether Kiernan has similar qualities to what Taylor had as a player, the Saddlers chief said: “He’s far more skilful than I ever was, I’ll tell you that.

“I’ve spent a lot of time with Brendan as he’s desperate to learn what his roles and responsibilities are. When you’ve got players like that coming to you, players that are hungry to learn, it’s great.

“He’s 28 years old, too, and that in itself is huge. Brendan has 100 per cent bought into what we’ve asked of him.

“I’m not suggesting that other players haven’t, but talking about Brendan, he’s fully on board.

“You can tell by the way he plays that he’s enjoying his football.”

Taylor added: “You see his effort. He’s a winger, and he’s consistently highest in terms of physical output because he does a job – and understands he has to do a job for the team out of possession.

“Brendan is someone who is going to get better.

“I’d still like him to have more goals and assists but in terms of what he has done to this point, we’re extremely happy.”

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