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Brian Dutton: "The Lads Left it All Out on the Pitch"

Brian Dutton spoke to the media after the Saddlers' EFL Trophy defeat to Oxford United.
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Speaking after Tuesday evening's EFL Trophy - Southern Group D defeat to Oxford United, assistant manager and development coach Brian Dutton admitted he was disappointed as the Saddlers exited the competition.

Walsall went into the match knowing that only a win would guarantee them a place in the Second Round as Bristol Rovers and Chelsea Under-21’s, who are currently tied on two points - one point behind the Saddlers - meet next week.

The match saw the Saddlers continue their recent spell of disappointing form in front of goal with striker Caolan Lavery's crossbar-hitting header being the closest thing to a goal for the men in red.

Walsall's failure to make the most of their few chances at goal was punished three minutes from time as second-half substitute Derick Osei Yaw slammed home for the edge of the area to see the U's safely through as group leaders.

Speaking to the assembled media, Brian said; "We’re really disappointed to concede so late in the game. The lads left it all out on the pitch, there wasn’t a bad performance out there.

"They really dug in for us and it was a sucker punch at the end. It was a strong defensive performance, we kept them relatively quiet and Oxford are a top team.

"They finished in the Play-Offs last year and were really unlucky not to progress into the second tier.

"It was a really solid performance and then that one lapse of concentration towards the end and with the quality Oxford have on the pitch they’ve punished us. It’s a big learning curve for us."

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