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MATCH REPORT | Chesterfield 1 Walsall 4
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MATCH REPORT | Chesterfield 1 Walsall 4
MATCH REPORT | Chesterfield 1 Walsall 4
MATCH REPORT | Chesterfield 1 Walsall 4

MATCH REPORT | Chesterfield 1 Walsall 4

On Saturday afternoon, Walsall Interim Head Coach Jon Whitney took his side to the Proact Stadium, where they took on Chesterfield in the latest Sky Bet League 1 fixture of the season. You can read our match report below.
On Saturday afternoon, Walsall Interim Head Coach Jon Whitney took his side to the Proact Stadium, where they took on Chesterfield in the latest Sky Bet League 1 fixture of the season. You can read our match report below.

Walsall, under the stewardship of Jon Whitney, returned to the 3-5-2 system which brought such joy earlier in the season. The hosts got us under way but were quickly dispossessed and allowed the Saddlers to enjoy a good early spell with the ball. An excellent, composed start from the men in red.

The Saddlers kept possession well in the opening minutes, happy to patiently build attacks, rather than rush at goal. In the eighth minute we saw the first real shot as Sam Mantom sent in a floating cross which was slightly too high for Tom Bradshaw who headed wide.

Walsall went close again moments later, as Rico Henry burst into the box and sent his shot across goal. The ball was deflected wide for a corner, which was easily headed clear by Liddle.

The Saddlers kept up the pressure and eleven minutes a clever dummy from Demetriou allowed Mantom to get a shot in, the ball sent narrowly wide of goal. Some lovely play from a buoyant looking Walsall team.

It took the hosts thirteen minutes to create their first opening of the match. Dimaio set up O'Shea who was only only able to curl his effort over the bar. Much better from the Spireites who have had a job on their hands to calm the visitors.

Two minutes later, the Spireites were at it again, Donohue crossing into the box to set up Novak who did well to bring the ball down and get his shot away, prompting an excellent save from Etheridge.

In the nineteenth minute Chesterfield were awarded a free-kick. It didn't appear too dangerous for the visitors, as the kick was taken short to O'Shea who sent a cross in to a largely empty box; a miscommunication between O'Connor and Etheridge seeing the ball find it's way into the net from the shoulder of O'Connor.

The hosts enjoyed more possession following the goal, sending in a couple of weak efforts from long-range, which Etheridge was easily able to deal with.

With twenty-seven minutes on the clock, Hiwula was afforded space to send in a shot from twenty yards out, following some excellent play from Bradshaw and Sawyers, who combined well to set up the young loanee. The 'keeper comfortably gathered the ball, but some good play from the Saddlers.

Chesterfield were again afforded a spell of possession following Hiwula's shot, but were unable to create anything to trouble the Saddlers. Talbot was able to create space to shoot from twenty five yards out but the ball sailed well over the posts without troubling Etheridge.

With thirty five minutes played, the scores were levelled, a dangerous Mantom cross from the right being turned into the hosts net by Anderson, who swung at the ball under little pressure.

Five minutes before half-time, Banks went close to re-establishing the Spireites lead with a firm right-footed drive from outside the box. Etheridge was comfortable to stand and watch as the ball cleared the bar, close for the hosts though.

Chesterfield continued to press and went close again through O'Shea who put the ball wide following some good approach play from Banks and Dimiao.

One minute of time was added. Sam Mantom sent in a late shot which was caught by Lee and the teams went in all level, one apiece, at the break.


The teams remained unchanged as Walsall got us back under way for the second half. The half got off to a scrappy start, both teams cancelling the other out, neither able to create anything of note. Some good midfield play for both though.

Ten minutes into the half, O'Shea sent in a fabulous shot from twenty five yards, the ball flew over the bar without troubling Etheridge. The hosts beginning to look more dangerous.

Walsall were quick to quell the Spireites resurgence; Bradshaw able to hold the ball up before sending a cross in, which Demetriou worked to Mantom on the edge of the box. Sam able to calmly curl the ball into the bottom corner.

The aftermath of the goal saw confusion reign as Banks and Mantom picked up yellow cards and Donohue saw red after appearing to punch Demtriou. The linesman in excellent position to assist the referee in handing the Saddlers a man advantage for the final half an hour.

Rico Henry quickly went close to extending the Saddlers lead, his header on target but just too close to Lee who produced a fine save to keep the ball out.

In the sixty ninth minute, Novak was awarded a yellow card for a vocal complaint at the referee, as Chesterfield made their first change of the match, bringing on Declan John in place of Drew Talbot.

Twenty minutes from time, Walsall further extended their lead, as Anderson miscontrolled the ball, allowing Hiwula to pounce and fire past Lee.

A few minutes after the goal, Chesterfield opted to make another change to their line-up, introducing Sylvan Ebanks-Blake in place of Jay O'Shea.

With fifteen minutes still to play, Walsall put the game to bed with their fourth goal of the afternoon. An excellent team goal, Sawyers and Hiwula combining well to tee up Mantom who tucked the ball into the far corner.

Ten minutes from time, Chesterfield made their final substitution of the afternoon, replacing Lee Novak with Ritchie Humphreys. Walsall also took the opportunity to make a change, bringing on Anthony Forde in place of Andy Taylor.

With chants of "Who needs Mourinho? We've got our physio!" ringing out from the travelling supporters and the team looking dominant on the pitch, Walsall opted to make their second change of the day, Milan Lalkovic coming on, Tom Bradshaw the man to make way.

The final few minutes of the half were a quiet affair, Walsall able to take their foot off the pedal and the Spireites unable to make much of their time on the ball.

Three minutes from time, Ebanks-Blake sent a shot in, which was cleared for a corner. Humphreys took the flag-kick but the ball was headed away, he managed to win the ball back but sent his shot wide.

With full time looming, Walsall made their final change, replacing the brace scoring Sam Mantom with Bryn Morris.

After a busy second half, four minutes of time were added. Little use was made of them, though Demetriou did see a deflected shot saved by Lee.

Full-time was called, the Saddlers taking all three points and scoring four goals in the process.

GOALS | O'Connor (OG 19') - Anderson (OG 35'), Mantom (57' & 75'), Hiwula (71')
ATTENDANCE | 6,938 (823 Walsall)
REFEREE | Mr. Ross Joyce | Cleveland

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