Match Report: Walsall 0 Barrow 1

Here is our Match Report from Friday evening's League Two clash between Walsall and Barrow.
The Saddlers arrived at the match on the back of a late defeat to Cambridge United, a result which saw the Reds stretch their recent run to just one win in thirteen games, giving them plenty to play for ahead of kick-off.

Walsall got the action underway, but just two minutes in, Barrow won the first corner of the match as Mat Sadler was forced to turn the ball out of play. Nothing would come of the flag-kick though as the Saddlers defences cleared the danger.

Barrow continued to look the brighter of the two sides, creating the first real scoring opportunity in the fifth minute, as Scott Quigley found himself in shooting range, however his effort lacked power and Walsall shot-stopper, Liam Roberts, easily gathered.

The visiting side continued to see much of the ball as the game continued, winning a second corner in the twelfth minute, which the Saddlers were again able to deal with.

With sixteen minutes on the clock, Walsall created their first chance of the game; Tyreik Wright firing wide from twenty-five yards out.

The Saddlers continued to enjoy a brighter spell, with Liam Kinsella looking to set up Max Melbourne in the twentieth minute. Unfortunately for the home side, the Barrow defences were on hand to clear.

There was little action of note as time ebbed away, both sides enjoying spells on the ball without troubling their opposition defences.

With twenty-nine minutes on the clock, Dan Scarr became the first player to see his name taken by the referee, as he picked up a yellow card for a foul on Scott Quigley.

Barrow were presented with probably the best chance of the game in the thirty-third minute, as a corner kick was swung in for Tom Davies, however, Roberts remained alert to the danger and tipped his looping header over the bar, with the resulting flag-kick coming to nothing.

There was a brief halt to proceedings in the thirty-ninth minute, allowing Brad Barry and Max Melbourne to receive treatment following a collision. Fortunately for the Saddlers, Melbourne was able to continue, however, Barrow were forced to make their first substitution as it was deemed Barry would be unable to play on. Neal Eardley the man to take his place.

In the forty-fifth minute, Emmanuel Osadebe became the second player to see yellow, as he picked up a caution for a foul on Patrick Brough.

Five additional minutes were added to end the first-half, but neither side was able to create anything further of note and the sides headed off for their half-time refreshments with the scores still tied.

HT
WALSALL
0-0
BARROW

The teams returned unchanged following the break, and Barrow got the second-half underway. The visiting side began the half brightly, forcing a fine save from Roberts in the forty-eighth minute as an Eardley cross was turned goal-wards by Luke James.

Barrow continued to enjoy a bright spell, winning a corner in the fiftieth minute as Melbourne turned the ball out of play, but the flag-kick ultimately came to nothing.

The Saddlers were forced to make a change to their line-up in the fifty-sixth minute as a knock forced Dan Scarr from the game, with Cameron Norman taking to the field to replace him.

The visiting side continued to look the brighter of the two sides as the match continued, with Quigley seeing an effort blocked in the fifty-eighth minute.

Walsall opted to make two further changes to their line-up just three minutes after Scarr was forced from the game. Emmanuel Osadebe and Josh Gordon making way as Wes McDonald and Derick Osei Yaw took their places.

The game settled into something of a midfield battle as it continued, with little attacking intent on display from either side.

With sixty-eight minutes played, Barrow opted to make their second change of the evening, with James Jones making way for Bobby Thomas.

The Saddlers won their first corner of the match, sixty-nine minutes in, as a Norman effort from distance was deflected behind, but the side were unable to make use of the opportunity with the flag-kick coming to nothing.

Walsall continued to show signs of improvement as the match continued, bringing Barrow 'keeper, Joel Dixon into the game in the seventy-fourth minute, as Wright fired a twenty-five yard effort into his waiting arms.

Mat Sadler became the third player to see yellow as he picked up a booking for a foul on James in the eightieth minute.

The hosts won their second corner of the game two minutes later, as Davies turned the ball out of play, but nothing would come of the opportunity as Sadler fired wide.

Seven minutes from time, Barrow opted to make a double substitution, with Jamie Devitt and Luke James making way for Ollie Banks and Josh Kay.

With eighty-seven minutes on the clock, Barrow all but secured the three points, as Quigley played the ball through to Josh Kay who snuck it past Roberts and into the bottom corner.

Five additional minutes were added to end the game, but neither side was able to create anything further of note. Barrow taking all three points with their late goal as Walsall struggled for chances again.

FT
WALSALL
0-1
BARROW

Kay (87')
VENUE
Banks's Stadium
REFEREE
Carl Brook
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