Match Preview: v Stockport County (H) Match Preview: v Stockport County (H)

Match Preview: v Stockport County (H)

Here we take a look ahead to the Saddlers' League Two meeting with Stockport County.
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 play their first home game of the 2023/24 campaign.

PRE-MATCH VIEWS

After opening their campaign up with a defeat to Morecambe, and following that up with a Carabao Cup exit at the hands of Blackburn Rovers in midweek, attention turns to WS1 and the visit of Stockport County.

Despite the duo of defeats, there are plenty of reasons for optimism amongst the faithful, with the likes of Joe Foulkes, Ross Tierney, and Ronan Maher more than staking a claim for a place in the starting eleven with fine performances during the narrow loss to Rovers.

It's far too early to be concerned with results, and the midweek defeat to Blackburn probably produced more positives than negatives, so long as results do begin to go our way, we're still cautiously optimistic.

WALSALL TEAM NEWS

The Saddlers could hand a debut to on-loan Lincoln City man Freddie Draper after the striker completed the remaining two games of his three-match suspension which he brought over from his time in the League of Ireland.

The aforementioned Foulkes, Tierney, and Maher are also pushing for starts as Mat Sadler suffers something of a welcome selection headache.

OPPOSITION NEWS

Visitors Stockport County, who featured atop many pundits' pre-season prediction tables, have also started the new season with a duo of defeats as they were narrowly beaten by Gillingham on opening day before losing to Sheffield Wednesday in the EFL Cup in midweek.

Despite their defeats, County will provide the Saddlers with a tough test and will be hoping to live up to much of the hype which has surrounded them over pre-season.

HEAD-TO-HEAD

Walsall and Stockport County have met on fifty previous occasions, and it's the Saddlers who hold a Head-to-Head lead having tasted victory on twenty-three occasions, compared to County’s eighteen. There have also been nine stalemates.
 
The two sides first met on Saturday, 22nd September 1900 in a Division Two clash that took place at County's Green Lane ground and saw the hosts win by four-goals-to-one.

The 1900/01 campaign was Stockport's first in the Football League after gaining admission earlier in the year.

THE LAST TIME WE MET

The most recent meeting between the two was an Emirates FA Cup - Third Round clash which took place at County's Edgeley Park on Sunday, 8th January 2023, and saw the Saddlers secure a place in the next round by two-goals-to-one.

After playing out a goalless first forty-five, the Saddlers opened the scoring via Danny Johnson with sixty-four minutes on the clock only for Paddy Madden to level with just two minutes of normal time remaining.

However, the drama didn't end there as veteran forward Andy Williams was able to put the Saddlers through with a well-taken penalty after Madden had felled Liam Kinsella inside the area.

MATCH OFFICIALS

The EFL has confirmed that Jacob Miles, who represents the Sussex County Football Association, will be the man in the middle as Walsall play host to Stockport County at Poundland Bescot Stadium this weekend.

This will be Jacob's first game in the EFL having progressed through various competitions including the National League, and Premier League 2.

Simon Shaw and Jake Topp have been named assistant referees whilst Declan O'Shea will act as Fourth Official.

CATCH THE MATCH

If you're not planning on going to the game you can catch the match via the club's in-house service - iFollow Walsall - which takes you through the highs and lows of every Saddlers game.

Not an iFollow Walsall subscriber? There are a range of options available, including monthly, annual, and gift subscriptions. For further information on the service, or to set up your subscription, click HERE.
Don't forget you can keep up to date with the latest Walsall FC news and views across social media, we're on 𝕏, Facebook, Threads, and Instagram. We also offer updates via Google News.
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