Darrell Clarke: "We WILL Turn it Around"

Walsall manager Darrell Clarke has spoken to the press following Saturday's disappointing defeat to Grimsby Town and called upon his squad to remain mentally strong as they continue to struggle for form.
The Saddlers were defeated as James Hanson's brace, coupled with Elliott Whitehouse's first-half equaliser saw Caolan Lavery's fifth-minute opener cancelled out as the visitors secured all three points in front of 4,812 fans at Banks's Stadium.

Clarke's side have now failed to win any of their last six all-competition outings, including a Carabao Cup - Round One defeat to Crawley Town, with their only win coming against Northampton Town on the opening day of the season.

And the Mansfield-born boss, who made several changes to his starting line-up heading into the clash with the Mariners, admitted that his players are still getting to know eachother and, given time, will begin to come good.

Speaking to the assembled media, Darrell said; "Like I’ve said to the players, it’s these moments you have to remember in football. I’ve been in the game plenty of years now as a player and a manager.

"It’s these moments where you have to stay mentally strong, when everyone’s questioning you, they are questioning the manager, they are questioning the decisions. You’ve got to stay mentally strong.

"I’m hoping that the majority of fans can hopefully see what we are trying to build, albeit the results haven’t come as of yet but it will change. We’ve had a bad start to the season with a new group of players, but we will dust ourselves down and we will turn it around."

Hanson, a frequent Saddlers tormentor, grabbed his first goal of the game against the run of the play as he headed home from Matt Green's well judged cross. His second then came from a dubious penalty, with the striker dusting himself down to score from the spot following a coming together with Cameron Pring - an incident which appeared to be more than a shoulder-barge.

Clarke admitted that, on the day, Hanson proved to be the difference between the sides, he continued; "The few opportunities they created we needed to defend better. Hanson was probably the difference.

"We gave them a couple of sloppy goals and we weren’t clinical enough in the final third, albeit creating more opportunities. We need braver players in the final third to take opportunities, to take things on, we didn’t do that enough.

"It doesn’t matter how you perform and how much possession you have, if you are going to give the sloppy goals away that we did today.

"At 1-0 we had a couple of fantastic chances to go 2-0 up, those chances are where you have to take your momentum.

"We bossed a lot of the game with possession but lost the game 3-1. We have to be braver in the final third, it’s not rocket science.

"We’ve created more opportunities today, had a lot of possession, a lot of the ball but not been clinical enough and not done our defensive duties as I expect us to do them. That’s the reason why we’re coming in on the back of another defeat."
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