Walsall return to league action against the Railwaymen tomorrow afternoon…
Saturday, 26th September 2015 (Kick-off 3.00pm)
Sky Bet League One
The Saddlers return to league action this weekend knowing a victory could send them top of League One, depending on leaders Burton’s result at Chesterfield. Walsall, who were knocked out of the Capital One Cup by holders Chelsea on Wednesday evening, have not beaten opponents Crewe in six attempts at the Banks’s. The Gresty Road outfit earned their maiden win of the season against Shrewsbury (1-0) last Saturday to climb off the bottom.
Walsall: 2nd – W5 D2 L1 F14 A5 PTS17
Crewe: 23rd – W1 D2 L5 F8 A15 PTS5
LAST FIVE LEAGUE MATCHES: (Most recent match first)
LAST TIME OUT:
Wednesday, 23rd September – Walsall 1-4 Chelsea – Capital One Cup Third Round
Goals from Ramires, Loic Remy, Kenedy and Pedro secured victory for the holders. James O’Connor scored the Saddlers’ consolation in first-half injury-time.
Team: Etheridge, Demetriou, Downing, O’Connor, Henry, Chambers (Flanagan 73’), Mantom, Morris, Sawyers, Lalkovic (Forde 73’), Cook (Baxendale 86’).
Saturday, 19th September – Shrewsbury 0-1 Crewe – League One
Adam King’s second-minute strike earned Crewe their first victory of the season to climb off the bottom of League One.
Team: Garratt, Turton, Davis, Nugent (Ray 60’), Atkinson, King, Inman (Guthrie 45’), Dalla Valle (Haber 66’), Fox, Colcough, Kingsley.
Walsall wins: 31
Crewe wins: 22
Saturday, 18th April 2015 – Crewe 1-1 Walsall
Tom Bradshaw’s deflected late strike cancelled out Marcus Haber’s first-half header at Gresty Road. A draw extended Walsall’s unbeaten run to five matches and kept Crewe in relegation trouble.
Steve Davis – The 50-year-old former Alex defender is set to take charge of his 200th Crewe match this weekend. He guided the Railwaymen to promotion via the League Two play-offs in 2011/12, and lifted the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy the following campaign. Davis, whose son Harry captains the Gresty Road club, has also managed Northwich and Nantwich.
CREWE STAR MAN:
Adam King – The Scottish midfielder is on loan from Premier League side Swansea. The 19-year-old, who netted Crewe’s second-minute winner at Shrewsbury last weekend, is the club’s four-goal leading marksman this term.
VIEW FROM THE CREWE CAMP:
Steve Davis (on playing Walsall) – “Walsall are technically good and they like to get the ball down and play. They have good players and it will be tough because they are brimming with confidence. Walsall are similar to us in how they try to produce good young players and give them a chance. It will be nice to catch up with Dean (Smith) and I am sure it will be a good, entertaining game for the fans.”
Walsall: Tom Bradshaw (groin strain) is Dean Smith’s only injury concern.
Crewe: Billy Bingham is out (hamstring). Ben Nugent is in contention after a similar injury.
James Linington (from Isle of Wight)
STAT OF THE DAY:
Five of the last six meetings between the two sides here at the Banks’s have ended in draws.
THIS AFTERNOON’S LEAGUE ONE FIXTURES: (3.00pm unless stated)
Barnsley vs. Gillingham
Bradford vs. Peterborough
Bury vs. Coventry
Chesterfield vs. Burton
Fleetwood vs. Port Vale
Millwall vs. Rochdale
Oldham vs. Wigan
Sheff Utd vs. Doncaster
Shrewsbury vs. Blackpool
Southend vs. Scunthorpe
Swindon vs. Colchester