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Carlisle 0-0 Walsall - Report

Walsall ground out a valuable draw at Carlisle after a dogged display in a game of few chances.

Jacob Maddox and Callum Guy.
Jacob Maddox and Callum Guy.

The home side enjoyed more possession throughout the game and the stats will show more corners, but it didn't really look like translating into a winner.

Indeed both goalkeepers didn't have much to do in terms of shot stopping, Owen Evans for Walsall nevertheless looking calm and assured behind a resolute defence.

Walsall were looking for their fourth undefeated game in all competitions and their third win in a row to gain ground on the Cumbrians who were five points ahead of them in the last play off position.

Liam Bennett came back into the team after not playing at Wycombe and there was no place in the squad for Liam Kinsella.

Danny Johnson and Jon Mellish.

Midfielder Jack Earing was on the bench, the first time he has been involved since he was injured against Tranmere in late September.

Walsall were going into this game with all thoughts of the coming FA Cup game in two weeks at the Bescot Poundland Stadium firmly on the back burner as they sought the points to get them within shouting distance of the play off positions.

Carlisle - under former Walsall loanee Paul Simpson - had made a good start to the season and their supporters were in good spirits.

The game started slowly, the bright Cumbrian sun affecting the view of some of the players and fans and it was Carlisle who reflected that brightness in the first 20 minutes.

Donervon Daniels.

They forced a series of corners, with Callum Guy looking dangerous, and though they came to nothing, this was a warning sign for the Saddlers.

Owen Evans had to react well to tip over a bouncing header from Fin Back which was an awkward one to deal with.

Walsall tried to hit Carlisle on the break but couldn't make much progress up front.

In injury time, a low crossed pass by Jordan Gibson for Carlisle reached Taylor Charter just outside the box and he had time to shoot but it went over.

Carlisle continued to apply the pressure in the early part of the second half but Walsall looked comfortable and started to settle in.

Manny Monthe..

A free kick near to the right touchline was swung in by Tom Knowles and it evaded everyone but just went wide, then on 55 minutes Danny Johnson saw a shot tipped over by goalkeeper Tomas Holy.

Eight minutes later Jacob Maddox tried to get things going with a neat one two with Tom Knowles but his shot went well wide.

Jacob Maddocks was again full of running for the whole game and two minutes from the end he cut inside, took on the Carlisle defence and shot just wide.

Then Liam Bennett shot just over the bar with a looping drive as Walsall looked for the winner in injury time.

Tom Knowles and Fin Back..

But boss Michael Flynn will probably be pleased with the result on the road as he called for more consistency away and in truth neither side deserved to win the game.

Teams

Carlisle 3-4-3

Holly; Armer; Moxon; Feeney (c); Huntington; Gibson; Guy; Edmondson; Charters; Mellish; Back.

Subs: Kelly (GK); Dennis (Edmondson 66); Sho-Silva; Whelan; Ellis; Harris; Stretton (Gibson 80).

Not used: Sho-Silva; Whelan; Ellis; Harris; Kelly (gk)

Walsall 4-4-2

Evans; White; Gordon; Daniels (c); Monthe; Knowles; Comley; Maddocks; Hutchinson; Bennett; Johnson

Subs: Williams (Johnson 78); Earing (Knowles 71);

Not Used: McEntee; Cashman; Allen; Maher; James-Taylor

Attendance: 5,493 (317 Walsall)

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