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Saddlers set to go with three at the back

Boss Dean Smith has hinted Walsall fans could be seeing a lot more of the 3-5-2 formation implemented in the pre-season friendly against Albion.

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The new system, which saw Rico Henry and Jason Demetriou operate as wing-backs, enabled the Saddlers to outplay their Premier League opponents for long spells despite falling to a 2-0 defeat.

Smith largely alternated between a 4-2-3-1 and 4-3-3 formation last season, but now looks set to tinker with all three systems in the forthcoming campaign.

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"We threw a system at the players that we have tried couple of times in pre-season for the Albion game and they handled it really well," Smith said.

"We played it in the games we had behind closed doors and the lads seemed really confident in it and comfortable.

"When people talk about three at the back it can seem ultra defensive. But as we saw it can be as aggressive or as defensive as you want it to be."

Smith has come in for criticism from some sections of Saddlers' fan base over the past few years for failing to experiment with formations.

But the boss said: "It amuses me at times because we have tried other formations."

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