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Walsall 4 Hartlepool 0 - Player Ratings

OWEN EVANS

Walsall score
Walsall score

Calm, confident and assured in his kicking and handling. Fine late double save to preserve a debut clean sheet.

Assured 8

DONERVON DANIELS

Impressive afternoon from the skipper in keeping with all of the central defensive trio. Rock solid.

Powerhouse 8

PETER CLARKE

This guy made his debut in January 2001, is now into his 41st year, and you genuinely would never tell. The Peter Pan of the Walsall back-line showed his expert positional sense and was a presence in both boxes.

Ageless 8

MANNY MONTHE

What a towering performance! Strong and robust both in attitude and the tackle, including one thumping challenge late on even at 4-0 up.

Immense 9

HAYDEN WHITE

Given licence to roam as a right wing back and absolutely made the most of it. Provided a string of crosses all afternoon and showed creativity in varying his delivery.

Clever 8

LIAM KINSELLA

A typical Liam Kinsella performance, which is always to Walsall’s benefit. On the end of a couple of robust challenges early on but was unfazed, continually breaking up play and using the ball so effectively.

Kinsella-like 8

BRANDON COMLEY

Largely occupied the area in front of the back four and produced a hugely impressive debut, keeping things ticking over. But also got forward to positive effect, culminating in scoring the first goal of Walsall’s season, and only the fourth of his career.

All-rounder 8

ISAAC HUTCHINSON

Well that is how to impose yourself on debut! Operating at the tip of the midfield trio Hutchinson was all over the pitch. Two assists, and went close himself. Looks a real find.

Excellent 9

TAYLOR ALLEN

Another stunning debut and Hartlepool just couldn’t cope with Allen’s relentless forays down the left. Had an early chance saved before the onslaught began.

Relentless 9

ANDY WILLIAMS

His strike-partner may grab the headlines but Williams also looks a real asset. Always a willing outlet with some impressive hold-up play, and always keen to get a shot off. Goals sure to follow.

Willing 8

DANNY JOHNSON

‘Siri, show me a perfect debut!’ A clinical hat-trick and that left foot looks like a wand. A very powerful wand. Spectacular Saddlers introduction.

Deadly 9

SUBStitutes

Liam Bennett (Daniels 68) 7, Jack Earing (for Comley 68) 7, Douglas James-Taylor (for Johnson 74) 7, Ronan Maher (for Hutchinson 80) 7, Timmy Abraham (for Williams 80): 7. Not used: Przybek (gk), F. Clarke.

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