Express & Star

Swindon v Walsall preview: Saddlers aiming to clip the wings of unbeaten Robins

Walsall travel to the County Ground to face an unbeaten Swindon Town tomorrow.


Last weekend, Walsall came from a goal behind to beat Salford 2-1 at the Peninsula Stadium and end a run of 15 away matches without a win in League Two.

Freddie Draper’s bullet header levelled proceedings just before the hour mark, and Oisin McEntee bagged the winner 13 minutes from time.

The Saddlers were shook by Chris Hussey’s retirement on Wednesday but boss Mat Sadler has now called on others to stake a claim.

“It opens up the ability to change shape if we want to and it opens up the door for other people to come in and play,” said Sadler. “If an opportunity knocks, do you want to jump through the door or not?

“We will see who wants to do that in the coming weeks.”

Danny Johnson has not featured in Walsall’s back-to-back victories over Colchester and Salford respectively.

Nevertheless, Sadler insists that Johnson is very much an important part of his plans.

Sadler said: “We’ve got five, if you add Ross (Tierney) into that, then six really good attacking options.

“I’ll play different players at different times, and I think we’ve seen the benefits of that.

“It’s worth mentioning what a long and arduous season it is and we’re seven games into that.

“We have seen so far that each and everyone of them have contributed at different times. Danny is part of a good attacking unit and without question will be a really important and key cog of that.”

Swindon are unbeaten after six games and have scored more goals than any other team (20) in the division.

Jake Young is the leading scorer in League Two with nine, and is partnered by former Albion striker Charlie Austin.

Sadler is aware of the quality Swindon possess, and anticipates a tough test at the County Ground.

“They’ve got some brilliant players. Really good attacking players, who not only know the level, but they know the levels above,” he observed. “Swindon are in a rich vein of form at the moment. Michael (Flynn) and Wayne (Hatswell) have got them going and they’ve put together a good team. It’ll be a really tough game for us and a very good test.”

Rollin Menayese (ankle), Jack Earing (knee) and Brandon Comley (ankle) will not be available for the Saddlers.

Tom Knowles has trained all week after missing the trip to Salford due to food poisoning, while Liam Gordon has returned from international duty for Guyana.

“Liam Gordon is back from international duty. He is in the country, I’ve spoken to him and I am delighted that he is around,” added Sadler. “I am proud of him for what he has done playing for his country and he should be proud of himself.

“Tom Knowles has had a full week of training now off the back of his illness.”