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Preview: Walsall aiming to spoil the party on their home turf

There will be a unique atmosphere at Walsall tomorrow, and the hosts are out to ruin Swindon Town’s special day.

Jack Earing and Akin Odimayo
Jack Earing and Akin Odimayo

The Robins go into the final day of the season aiming to guarantee a play-off place, while a win and other results going their way could even see them seal automatic promotion from League Two.

There is a lot riding on this clash for the visitors, and with that, around 3,500 Swindon supporters are going to be packing out both the University of Wolverhampton and Community stands.

So, the big question is, will the Saddlers be able to spoil the party?

Michael Flynn’s men will be keen to avoid Swindon gaining a stronghold both on and off the pitch, and, in fairness, the last home game acted as a decent warm-up for this encounter.

Another play-off chasing side in Port Vale came with a vocal set of fans but were matched all the way by a buoyant home crowd before Walsall won 2-0 thanks to a sound second-half performance.

Flynn would be delighted to see a similar turn of events.

The Saddlers, while a bottom-half finish will come regardless of what happens tomorrow, are looking to keep up a solid run of results at home.

They have won five of six outings at Bescot since Flynn took charge in February, with the Welshman’s aim of making it a fortress going pretty well so far.

They can also take heart from the result at Colchester United last weekend as while it was an up-and-down display, a point on the road is never to be sniffed at too much and kept the ball rolling ahead of this.

In front of what is likely to be the largest crowd seen at Bescot in 2021/22, Walsall’s players are also going to want to sign off positively and perhaps, for a few, look to prove one last point to Flynn ahead of a busy summer.

The Saddlers are unlikely to make too many changes from the side that drew 2-2 at Colchester.

Liam Kinsella may fancy his chances of returning to the starting line-up in the middle of the park, ahead of Sam Perry.

Otherwise, though, it looks likely to be the same – although they will hope to have Jack Rose and Zak Mills back in the squad after Covid and back issues respectively.

The Robins have won their last three outings to set things up nicely for this encounter and will have Ellis Iandolo back from suspension.

Walsall are aiming to make it third time lucky against Swindon having fallen to them in the second round of the FA Cup earlier this season.

They were then swept aside at the County Ground as the Robins ran out 5-0 winners, in what was Flynn’s second game in charge.

The Saddlers are the underdogs going into this but have relished that tag previously.

Again, Walsall want to be the party poopers and end what has been a difficult campaign on an undeniable high note.

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