Match Report: Walsall 0 Swindon Town 3 Match Report: Walsall 0 Swindon Town 3

Match Report: Walsall 0 Swindon Town 3

Here is our Match Report from the Saddlers' League Two meeting with Swindon Town.
It's the final day of the season and Michael Flynn's Saddlers went into the match with little to gain as they could only possibly move up one place with a win and other positive results.

However, opponents Swindon Town were looking to take maximum points as they hoped to retain their place in the Play-Off places, with both Sutton United and Tranmere Rovers hoping to take their place.

Walsall got the match underway, but just three minutes after kick-off, Swindon Town took the lead, as Mandela Egbo saw an early effort blocked, only for Harry McKirdy to pick up the loose ball and fire home, prompting rapturous celebrations from the travelling fans.

Swindon continued to press, winning a corner in the eighth minute, as Tyrese Shade was forced to turn the ball out of play, but nothing would come of the flag-kick.

The home side had soon worked the ball up to the other end, where they won a corner themselves, as Dion Conroy turned the ball behind. Another corner followed moments later, as Conroy blocked Shade's effort on goal following the first, but nothing would come of the second flag-kick either.

Walsall continued to enjoy a bright spell as they looked to restore parity, but Brendan Kiernan was unable to find the target in the fourteenth minute, after some good play from newly crowned, Player of the Season, Liam Kinsella set him up, as his effort sailed inches wide of the upright.

The game settled a little as it continued, but twenty-one minutes in, Swindon won a corner as Donervon Daniels turned the ball out of play, but nothing would come of the flag-kick, as Josh Davison's effort from the centre of the box was dealt with by Walsall shot-stopper, and freshly crowned, Young Player of the season, Carl Rushworth.

With twenty-five minutes on the clock, Swindon doubled their advantage, as Jack Payne spotted an opening and picked out the top corner, with a powerful strike from outside the area.

As we reached the half-hour mark, the Saddlers found themselves in shooting range once more, but Shade's effort from outside the box failed to worry Town 'keeper, Lewis Ward, as it sailed wide of the mark.

Walsall continued to press as they looked to get back into the game, but the side were unable to grab a goal back as Manny Monthe headed over following a corner, before Jack Earing saw an effort blocked for a second flag-kick, which George Miller fired over the crossbar.

The game settled into something of a midfield battle as it continued, with neither side creating much of note.

Moments after the board was raised to indicate that five additional minutes would be played to end the first-half, Swindon were awarded a penalty, as McKirdy was felled in the box by Donervon Daniels, who also received a yellow card for the foul.

Payne stepped forth to take the spot-kick, and duly converted, finding the bottom corner with ease. That was the last real action of note, and the sides headed off to enjoy their half-time refreshments with Swindon leading by three-goals-to-nil.

The teams returned unchanged following the break and Swindon got the final forty-five minutes of the season underway.

After a quiet start to the second-half, Walsall were awarded a free-kick in a dangerous position in the fifty-third minute, as Osadebe was fouled by Jonathan Williams, but nothing would come of the opportunity as Miller saw an effort on goal blocked.

With fifty-eight minutes on the clock, Swindon opted to make their first change of the afternoon, with Jonathan Williams making way for Ben Gladwin.

The Saddlers looked to pull a goal back moments after the change, but Kinsella's effort from outside the box, sailed high and wide.

Four minutes after the Town change, Walsall chose to use their first substitution of the game too, with Reece Devine making way for Sam Perry.

Walsall found themselves with another opportunity to reduce the deficit in the sixty-fifth minute, as some good work from Miller played Osadebe in, but his effort from the edge of the area whistled wide.

The Saddlers were awarded a free-kick in a promising position in the seventieth minute, as Miller was fouled by Ellis Iandolo. Before the set-piece could be taken, the yellow card was shown to Louis Reed, who kicked the ball away. Osadebe stepped up to take the free-kick, but his curling effort sailed inches wide of the target.

With seventy-three minutes on the clock, Manny Monthe became the third player to see yellow, as he picked up a caution for a foul on Payne.

Swindon opted to make their second change of the day, fifteen minutes from time, with Mandela Egbo being replaced by Akinwale Odimayo.

Walsall went close two minutes after the change, as Miller played the ball into the path of Brendan Kiernan, whose left-footed effort from the centre of the box was only denied by an alert Ward.

Swindon's third and final change of the game was completed in the seventy-ninth minute, as Mathieu Baudry was replaced by Jake O'Brien for the run-in.

The Saddlers continued to press late into the game, with Perry seeing an effort on goal blocked ten minutes from time, before Kiernan forced a save from Ward two minutes later. Kiernan then missing the target by an inch in the eighty-sixth minute, as his effort cannoned off the crossbar.

In the eighty-seventh minute, Walsall chose to use the second of their available substitutions, with Jack Earing making way for Jack Shaw.

Walsall made their final change of the season, in the eighty-ninth minute, as Manny Monthe made way for Mat Sadler, who was given two minutes of injury time to say farewell to the Saddlers faithful.

There was little further action of note, and the game was brought to it's conclusion with Swindon winning by three-goals-to-nil. The Saddlers ending their campaign with a whimper.


McKirdy (3')
Payne (25')
Payne [P] (45+3)
Sam Barrott
9,089 (3,590)
Banks's Stadium
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