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Club News


22 October 2015

The Saddlers have conceded just two goals in seven away games...

Walsall manager Dean Smith has paid tribute to his side’s ‘remarkable’ away defensive record.

The Saddlers have accumulated 17 points from a possible 21 on the road – the best return in League One – and have conceded only two away goals.

Smith’s men secured an impressive 2-0 victory at Barnsley on Tuesday evening - and the boss wants to keep the away run going at Colchester this weekend.

“I don’t think I’ve ever gone through a period where we’ve had seven away games and only conceded two goals,” said Smith.

“It’s remarkable.

“One of those was a disputed penalty against Peterborough and the other was a ‘ghost goal’ against Rochdale.

“So we could have conceded no goals in the seven games.

“It’s a tremendous record and the lads deserve a lot of credit for our play off the ball.

“The players are in a positive frame of mind and we feel we can trouble and score against any opponent.”

Tony Humes’ Colchester survived relegation on the final day of last season but have enjoyed a solid start to this campaign.

The U’s are 12th in League One with 19 points from 14 matches and recorded a 2-1 victory over Port Vale in midweek.

“They’re building something at the club,” said Smith.

“The chairman has backed the academy and they’re looking to get players through.

“They’ve got a young, energetic squad and are full of attacking intent as their ‘goals for’ column shows.

“They won four on the spin at one stage, then they lost three straight games, but they won again on Tuesday.

“It’ll be a tough game down there because they’re playing really well and have a lot of pace in their side.”

On the injury front, Smith is hopeful that James O’Connor (tight groin), Andy Taylor (knee) and Rico Henry (ankle) will all be fit.

He confirmed that Neil Etheridge (knee), Sam Mantom (ankle) and Isaiah Osbourne (knee) are out.

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