Youth Alliance: Walsall 3 Port Vale 1 Youth Alliance: Walsall 3 Port Vale 1
Posted by: Bescot Banter

Youth Alliance: Walsall 3 Port Vale 1

The young Saddlers' EFL Youth Alliance campaign continued on Saturday morning.
Walsall Under-18s returned to action on Saturday morning as they welcomed Port Vale to Ray Hall Lane for their latest EFL Youth Alliance - North West outing of what has been a challenging campaign.

Reaching the match on the back of a disappointing 2-2 draw with Shrewsbury Town, the Saddlers allowed Salop to rebound from two goals down to secure a late point, they were looking to earn their first win since they defeated Vale back in October.

Kilroy; Wilkes, Poskitt, Chakki, Cox, Pawlowski, Delaney-Cator, Webb, Wragg, Preece, Leydon
Substitutes: Beckford, Hetheridge, Straw, Uchenna, Teesdale

Moseley; Trapasso, Sadiq, Besford, Francis, Walters, Malbon, Agnero, Fisher, Brazier, Buah

Substitutes: Lake; Trowers, Bradbury, Barrett

Port Vale started the game well but the first goal of the game went the way of the Saddlers and saw Jaiy Leydon and Charlie Wragg combine with Wragg rounding the 'keeper and applying the finish after Leydon's long, lofted pass saw the defence at sixes and sevens.

Sadly for the Saddlers, their lead didn't last forever as Calyton Malbon levelled for Port Vale shortly before the game reached the half-hour mark, Saddlers stopper Jenson Kilroy unable to retain his clean sheet after a neat pass breached his backline.

Unbowed by their visitors' leveller, the Saddlers went on to put themselves back into the lead on the stroke of half-time as Wragg, after receiving a long ball from Kilroy, once again rounded the 'keeper before placing the ball into the back of the net.


The second half began with a couple of changes for the Saddlers as Cailen Beckford replaced Louie Webb before Tom Cox made way for Stan Straw.

Walsall's changes didn't disrupt their momentum as they went on to add to their lead as the Vale defence was once again hounded and harrassed with Jackson Preece's attacking drive seeing a Vale man put the ball in his own net just before the hour mark.

The game reverted back to the pattern in which it began with the teams making changes, Vale looking for a way back into the game, whilst the Saddlers were hoping to protect their advantage,

Walsall's substitution saw Brooklyn Delaney-Cator and Charlie Wragg making way for Will Uchenna and Finn Teesdale, whilst Vale, who had been forced into an early sub in the first half, rang the changes as Edward Lake, Marques Trowers, and Cameron Bradbury took the places of Clayton Malbon, Ale Trepasso, and Callum Besford.

The visitors produced a couple of goal-bound efforts in the latter stages of the contest with Liam Brazier creating an opening for Lake, the second-half sub unable to find the target, before the former also saw an effort drift wide of the post.

More chances went the way of Vale, with Zayn Sadiq forcing Kilroy into a save before Eli Fisher's well-placed header once again called the Walsall stopper into action.

The Saddlers looked to quell their opponents' tempo late in the game as Jackson Preece made way for Will Hetheridge, the home side unsurprisingly showing signs of fatigue following a hard-working defensive display.

There were no further goals as the young Saddlers secured their first Alliance win of 2024 and, with several games in hand, have given themselves something to build upon heading into the final stages of the season.

WRAGG (10')
WRAGG (45+6')
OWN GOAL (58')
MALBON (28')

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