League One managers and players full of praise...THE SADDLERS have received plenty of praise from managers and players of fellow League One clubs.
Speaking in the Matchday Programme for Sunday’s League One play-off Final between Brentford and Yeovil Town, MK Dons manager, Karl Robinson said:
“The best team performance against us came from Walsall on Boxing Day. Their front four were a real handful; Will Grigg, Febian Brandy, Jamie Paterson and James Baxendale annihilated us that day.
"If they had played like that every week they would have finished closer to the promotion places.”
Tranmere Rovers boss, Ronnie Moore was also wholesome in his praise for the job that Dean Smith has done.
“For me the League One Manager of the Season is between Russell Slade at Leyton Orient and Walsall’s Dean Smith.
“Walsall and us have the two lowest budgets at this level so for them to finish where they did was fantastic. It’s not easy when you haven’t got any money; you’ve got to be lucky with your players, keeping them fit because the depth of the squad isn’t as strong.”
Meanwhile, talented midfielder, Harry Arter, who helped AFC Bournemouth to promotion into The Championship, also expects big things from The Saddlers next season.
“Walsall outclassed us home and away,” he said. “They have a good group of young players and they’re all good on the ball. They try to play the right way and even though they had a slow start to the season, the fact that they narrowly missed out on the play-offs speaks volumes for the job that Dean Smith has done.
“They could challenge next season.
“Will Grigg gave us a tough time at their place in January. Our back four was brilliant all season, particularly the central defenders, and I would say they definitely had their most difficult afternoon against him.”