Match Report: Walsall 0 Aston Villa 4 Match Report: Walsall 0 Aston Villa 4
Match Report: Walsall 0 Aston Villa 4

Match Report: Walsall 0 Aston Villa 4

Here is our Match Report from the Saddlers' pre-season clash with Steven Gerrard's Aston Villa.
Walsall welcomed Aston Villa to Poundland Bescot Stadium as they opened their pre-season campaign with a clash against well-fancied opponents as they continue their preparation for the 2022/23 campaign.

Aston Villa began the game brightly, and just eight minutes in, they took the lead as Leon Bailey found himself free at the far post and connected with an Anwar El Ghazi flick-on and fired the ball into the top corner.

Walsall looked to respond quickly to falling a goal behind, but Diego Carlos positioned himself well to thwart Issac Hutchinson. Unperturbed, the Saddlers continued to press, with Douglas James-Taylor firing over the crossbar in the twelfth minute.

Villa went close to securing a second goal in the seventeenth minute, as Bertrand Traore saw an opening, but his effort from distance was denied by Walsall 'keeper, Owen Evans, who did well to parry the ball. Traore continued to test the Saddlers shot-stopper, forcing him into a one-handed save just two minutes later.

The game settled into something of a midfield battle as it continued, with little action of note before the sides paused for a drinks break in the twenty-fifth minute.

There was little further action of note as the players settled back into the contest, until a mistake from trialist Ben Richards-Everton allowed Cameron Archer through on goal, with the Villa man chipping the ball past Evans to double his sides lead.

That would be the final action of note before the sides headed off to enjoy their half-time refreshments. Aston Villa leading by two-goals-to-nil at the break.

HALF-TIME SCORE
WALSALL 0-2 ASTON VILLA

The teams returned for the second-half, with a raft of changes for both sides. Walsall resting Evans, Richards-Everton, James-Taylor and Brandon Comley, as their places were filled by Adam Pryzbek, Hayden White, Manny Monthe and Andy Williams, whilst Aston Villa opted to replace their entire outfield team.

The visiting side almost extended their lead just three minutes into the second-half, as Ollie Watkins burst through on goal, but substitute 'keeper, Pryzbek positioned himself well to make the save.

Villa 'keeper, Viljami Sinisalo was tested three minutes later, as Joe Riley combined with trialist, Timmy Abraham, but the shot-stopper was equal to the goal-bound effort.

With fifty-four minutes on the clock, the visiting side scored their third goal of the game as Tommi O'Reilly played in Watkins, who fired into the far corner.

Walsall opted to make two further changes to their line-up in the sixty-third minute, as Donervon Daniels and Liam Kinsella made way for Peter Clarke and trialist, Aneurin Livermore.

With seventy minutes on the clock, Aston Villa added to their tally, as Douglas Luiz fired home direct from a corner-kick.

Moments after the change, the Saddlers made another change to their line-up, with Liam Bennett making way for Ronan Maher.

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

The Saddlers chose to make two further changes to their team in the seventy-eighth minute, with Taylor Allen and Timmy Abraham making way for trialists, Cameron Green and Jonas Mukuna.

Maher went close for the Saddlers in the eighty-sixth minute, but his effort was deflected behind, and the resulting corner saw the youngster denied again, this time by Sinisalo who produced a fine save to ensure the hosts would not alter the scoreline.

That would be the final action of note, and the game was brought to it's conclusion with Aston Villa winning by four-goals-to-nil.

FULL-TIME SCORE
WALSALL 0-4 ASTON VILLA




BAILEY (8')
ARCHER (38')
WATKINS (54')
DOUGLAS LUIZ (70')
AT POUNDLAND BESCOT STADIUM
ATTENDANCE 9,409 (4,027)
REFEREE TOM NIELD (WEST YORKSHIRE)
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