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Match Preview: Walsall v Bristol Rovers
Here we take a look ahead to the Saddlers' League Two clash with Bristol Rovers.
Don't forget to join us across our social media channels where we'll bring you all the matchday build-up, in-game updates, and post-match reaction as the Saddlers return to action.

Pre-Match News & Views

After going four games without defeat, the Saddlers came back down to earth last weekend as Newport County secured all-three points as former Walsall captain James Clarke netted via Cameron Norman's cross to take all three points.
 
The match was not without its positives as on-loan Leicester City forward Tyrese Shade was able to grab his first professional goal, with a superb strike on the stroke of half-time, the goal hopefully serving as a major confidence boost has Tyrese continues to impress.

Sadly, the positive of Shade's strike has been dampened by the news that hard-working midfielder Liam Kinsella is set for a spell on the sidelines after suffering a knee injury during the clash at Rodney Parade.
 
Kinsella, who has made nine first-team appearances so far this season, is set to undergo an operation and will hopefully miss weeks rather than months of action as he has become one of the first names on the scoresheet following a string of solid displays.

Hopefully, the likes of Sam Perry and the soon-to-return from suspension Joss Labadie can fill the void left by Kins' as the team can ill afford weakness in midfield as the injury list continues to grow.
 
Opponents, Bristol Rovers, have won just two of their eight league outings so far this season and arrive at the match on the back of a 3-1 defeat to Leyton Orient, a result which sees them sit outside the dropzone on goal difference.

Head to Head

There have been one-hundred and four competitive meetings between Walsall and Bristol Rovers, and it's the Pirates who hold a small head-to-head lead having tasted victory on forty-two occasions, compared to the Saddlers' thirty-nine

There have been twenty-three draws over the history of the fixture. A history which began at the Eastville Stadium on Saturday, 27th August 1927 as Rovers and Walsall met in a high-scoring Division Three (South) clash, the home side winning 5-2.
 
The most recent meeting took place at the Banks's on Saturday, 7th November 2020 as the two sides met in the First Round of the FA Cup.
 
The match saw the Saddlers exit the competition at the first time of asking, as first-half goals from Jack Baldwin and Brandon Hanlan were enough to cancel out Caolan Lavery's 87th minute effort and take the Pirates thorugh to the next round.

Man in the Middle

The EFL has confirmed that Sebastian Stockbridge, who is based in Tyne & Wear, will be the man in the middle, whilst Greg Read and Ollie Williams have been named assistant referees. Declan Ford will act as Fourth Official.

GAMES
7
YELLOW
CARDS
RED
CARDS
23
1
PENALTIES
1

Catch the Match

You can catch the match via the club's in-house service - iFollow Walsall - which takes you through the highs and lows of each and every Saddlers match.

Not an iFollow Walsall subscriber? There are a range of options available, including monthly, annual, and gift subscriptions. You can purchase a subscription, or find further information on the service, by clicking HERE.
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