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Match Report: Walsall 2 Leyton Orient 1

The Saddlers returned to action on Tuesday evening as they welcomed Leyton Orient to Banks's Stadium.
Arriving at the match on the back of last weekend's one-all draw with Colchester United, Darrell Clarke's Saddlers were looking to retain their unbeaten start to the league season as Ross Embleton's Orient came to town.

Leyton Orient got the match action underway, but it was Saddlers who enjoyed the brighter start to the game, seeing plenty of the ball before creating the opening chance in the fifth minute as Elijah Adebayo looked to play in Caolan Lavery, but O's 'keeper, Lawrence Vigouroux was alert to the danger and got to the ball ahead of the Walsall man.

The Saddlers continued to play well, going close again moments later, as Adebayo raced through on goal, only to be stopped by a last gasp tackle from Josh Coulson.

With nine minutes on the clock, Orient won the first corner of the match, as they began to see more of the ball, but the Saddlers defences ensured nothing would come of the flag-kick.

The visiting team continued to enjoy a brighter spell, and as we reached the quarter hour mark, they took the lead. A poorly executed back pass from Liam Kinsella allowing Danny Johnson a free shot on goal, which he duly slotted home.

Walsall looked to respond quickly to falling a goal behind, but Wes McDonald's sixteenth minute effort from outside the box failed to trouble the man between the sticks, as it sailed wide.

With twenty-five minutes on the clock, after a good spell of possession, the Saddlers equalised. A lovely one-two between Rory Holden and Lavery, seeing the former slot home to level the scores.

Orient soon had the ball back at the other end as they looked to re-establish their earlier lead, but Conor Wilkinson skied his effort and the Saddlers after some good work from Ousseynou Cisse.

In the thirty-fourth minute, the Saddlers were awarded a penalty as Holden was felled by Widdowson inside the box. Lavery stepped up to take the spot-kick, but Vigouroux guessed right and got down well to deny the goal.

Walsall continued to look the more likely to score as the game continued, winning a free-kick in the thirty-eighth minute, which Holden played in to Dan Scarr, whose headed effort looked destined for the back of the net, forcing Vigouroux to make another save.

That was the last real action of the first-half, and after two minutes of extra time had been played, the sides headed off for their half-time refreshments with the scores tied at one-goal-apiece.

TOWN
HT
WALSALL
WALSALL
1 - 1
ORIENT

The teams returned unchanged after the break, and Walsall got the action back underway. Orient started the second-half on the front foot, with Johnson seeing an effort hit the side-netting just two minutes in.

The O's continued to look the brighter as the action continued, but the Walsall defences continued to stand firm, denying their opposition any further chances of note.

There was a brief halt to proceedings five minutes into the half, allowing Lavery to receive treatment for a knock, but he was soon back to his feet and able to continue.

The Saddlers began to see more of the ball as the game continued, with Adebayo a little unlucky to be caught offside in the fifty-sixth minute, as a lovely through ball from Cameron Norman looked to play him in.

With sixty-one minutes on the clock, the Saddlers patience paid dividends, with Adebayo netting his third goal of the season to give his side the lead for the first time in the game.

A lovely long ball from Norman being played on by Elijah to McDonald, who saw his effort blocked, before the Brent born striker smashed the ball home.

Adebayo went close again just four minutes later, with a shot from a tight angle, but Vigouroux was alert to the danger and kept his side in the tie.

With sixty-seven minutes on the clock, Danny Guthrie became the first player to see yellow, as he picked up a booking for a foul on James Brophy.

Two minutes later, Orient took the opportunity to make their first change of the evening, as James Dayton made way for Jordan Maguire-Drew.

The visiting side almost drew level twenty minutes from time, with Wilkinson drawing a fine save from Walsall shot-stopper, Liam Roberts.

The hosts soon had the ball back up at the other end, as they looked to effectively put the game to bed, but McDonald's right-footed effort from outside the box was stopped by Vigouroux.

The action continued apace, with Orient winning a free-kick in a dangerous position in the seventy-third minute, but George Nurse got a head to the ball to nod behind. The resulting corner coming to nothing.

Nurse was involved again moments later, as, up at the other end, he looked to play in Holden, but the midfielders effort collided with the post, before Holden fired the rebound high over the crossbar.

Seventy-eight minutes in, Leyton Orient opted to make their final two changes of the evening, as Ousseynou Cissé and Josh Wright made way for Jamie Turley and Craig Clay.

Liam Kinsella became the second player to see yellow in the seventy-ninth minute, as he picked up a booking for a foul.

Ten minutes from time, the Walsall bench chose to make their first change of the game, with Danny Guthrie departing in favour of Stuart Sinclair.

The Saddlers soon had the ball back in the danger zone, with Kinsella playing McDonald in with a well-placed header, but Wes was unable to beat the O's defences with his effort from outside the box.

With eighty-six minutes on the clock, Walsall opted to make a second change to their line-up, with Caolan Lavery missing the final few minutes as Emmanuel Osadebe took his place.

A minute from time, Rory Holden joined those in the referee's notebook, as he picked up a yellow card for a foul on Clay.

Five additional minutes were added to end the game. Orient looked the more likely to score, but after wasting a corner, they allowed Walsall to counter. A move which almost resulted in Osadebe scoring, but his touch was heavy and allowed Vigouroux time to collect.

With ninety-four minutes played, Wes McDonald became the fourth Saddler to be booked. That would be his final contribution, as Walsall manager, Darrell Clarke opted to make his third and final change of the game, introducing Zak Jules in McDonald's place.

That was the final action of a busy evening, and the Saddlers took all three points, along with a potential fine for a fifth booking, which was given moments after the final whistle sounded.

Emmanuel Osadebe picking up a booking for a scuffle, for which Lawrence Vigouroux and Joe Widdowson also saw yellow.

TOWN
FT
WALSALL
WALSALL
2 - 1
ORIENT
Holden (25')
Adebayo (61')
Johnson (15')

VENUE
Banks's Stadium
REFEREE
Chris Pollard

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