MATCH REPORT: Shrewsbury Town 2 Walsall 0 MATCH REPORT: Shrewsbury Town 2 Walsall 0
MATCH REPORT: Shrewsbury Town 2 Walsall 0

MATCH REPORT: Shrewsbury Town 2 Walsall 0

Here is our Match Report from Saturday's League One clash between Shrewsbury Town and Walsall.
Walsall were back in action on Saturday afternoon as they made the short trip to Montgomery Waters Meadow where they took on title-chasing Shrewsbury Town in their latest League One fixture of the season. We were in attendance, and you can read our match report below.

Shrewsbury started the game brightly, seeing much of the ball in the opening moments and just four minutes in, created a good opportunity to score, but Carlton Morris was just unable to reach a cross from Luke Hendrie as it flashed across the box.

With only six minutes played, Alex Rodman opened the scoring, meeting a delightful low cross from Shaun Whalley at the far post to turn the ball home. The Saddlers looked to respond quickly, doing well to get the ball up to the other end where Julien Ngoy crossed a neat ball in for Kieron Morris, but Dean Henderson was alert and tipped the headed effort over the bar, with the resulting corner coming to nothing.

The hosts were unlucky not to grab a second in the ninth minute as Whalley again played a lovely ball into the box which was met by Carlton Morris, but the striker clattered the ball off the post granting the Saddlers a reprieve. The Shrews continued to dominate, and soon had the ball back in shooting range, winning a free-kick in a dangerous position twelve minutes in, but Liam Roberts was alert to beat Whalley's effort away, before Jon Nolan sent the ball sailing over from twenty yards.

Walsall were awarded a free-kick in the thirteenth minute for a foul on Nicky Devlin. Erhun Oztumer whipped the ball into the box, but his teammates were unable to get to it and it sailed harmlessly wide.

The early frenetic pace slowed a little as the sides settled into the game, until, eighteen minutes in, the Shrews were awarded a free-kick for a foul on Nolan, which Whalley whipped in towards the back-post where it was met by Aristote Nsiala, who turned the ball wide.

The Saddlers soon had the ball back at the other end, thanks to some great work from Oztumer, who played in Jon Guthrie with a neat cross, but the defender was unable to beat Henderson with his header.

Twenty eight minutes in, Luke Hendrie became the first player booked, picking up a yellow card for a foul on Oztumer. The resulting free-kick was swung in by Oztumer but curled harmlessly wide.

The pace slowed considerably after the half hour mark, with both sides enjoying spells of possession without creating any further chances of note. One additional minutes was added to end the half, but neither side was able to make use of them and the teams headed for the dressing rooms with a Shrewsbury one-goal lead intact.

1 - 0

The teams returned unchanged after the break, and the match got back underway. The Saddlers started the second half brightly, with Kieron Morris firing a decent effort in from outside the box just a minute in, but his shot sailed inches wide of the upright.

Six minutes into the half, Walsall captain, Adam Chambers became the second player entered into the referee's notebook for pulling Whalley down.

The hosts began to see more of the ball as the game progressed and looked like doubling their advantage in the fifty third minute, but their captain, Abu Ogogo was just unable to get his head to a Carlton Morris cross into the box. Walsall soon had the ball back at the other end, thanks to some good work from Amadou Bakayoko who collected the ball in his own half and carried it towards goal but the big striker sent his eventual effort sailing over the crossbar.

Sixty two minutes in, Shrewsbury thought they had found their second as the ball hit the back of the net following a corner, but a shove on Liam Roberts by Omar Beckles caused the referee to disallow the goal.

The hosts continued to press, with a lovely team effort from Ogogo, Hendrie and Whalley culminating in the later playing the ball into the path of Nolan who looked almost certain to score, but his scuffed effort was poor and the Saddlers were able to clear the danger.

In the seventy first minute, the Saddlers opted to make the first change of the afternoon, replacing Kieron Morris with Flo Cuvelier for the final twenty minutes.

The action became largely confined to the midfield area as the game progressed, with neither side able to create anything of note going forwards, but seventy-five minutes in, a neat move from the Saddlers saw George Dobson set up Devlin, but Devlin's twenty yard effort sailed wide.

Shrewsbury opted to make their first change of the afternoon in the seventy sixth minute, with Carlton Morris making way for Stefan Payne.

Four minutes later, Town made their second change of the day, replacing Shaun Whalley with Nathan Thomas for the final ten minutes as they looked to hang on to their slender lead.

The Saddlers won a corner in the eighty second minute, which was half-cleared by the Shrews, but only as far as Chambers who lifted the ball back into the box for Luke Leahy whose headed effort slammed into the crossbar. Unlucky for the visitors who looked certain to equalise.

In the eighty sixth minute, Walsall opted to make their second change of the game, introducing Justin Shaibu for the final few minutes as Julien Ngoy's afternoon came to an early end.

Two minutes from time, Ogogo put the game to bed as he got on the end of a cross from Rodman and turned the ball home from close range.

Following their second goal, Shrewsbury opted to make their third and final change, introducing Lenell John-Lewis in place of Jon Nolan as the officials indicated three additional minutes would be played.

Neither side was able to create any further chances of note, and the referee called an end to the game with Shrewsbury still two goals to the good. Another disappointing afternoon for the Saddlers, who despite creating a few half-decent chances, were once again unable to convert their opportunities.

2 - 0
Rodman (6')
Ogogo (88')

Attendance: 7,633 (970)
Referee: Stephen Martin
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