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WHITNEY RELISHING END-OF-SEASON RUN-IN

1 April 2016

The Saddlers visit Sheffield United tomorrow...

Head coach Jon Whitney says he is relishing Walsall’s busy end-of-season run-in and has challenged his players to make it a campaign to remember.

The Saddlers are third in League One, six points off the automatic promotion places, albeit with two games in hand.

Whitney’s men return to league action after a two-week break tomorrow afternoon with a trip to Sheffield United – the first of nine games in just 37 days.

And the 45-year-old, who has won all three of his matches since taking charge, is looking forward to what promises to be an exciting end to the season.

“I’m relishing this April schedule,” said Whitney. “The sun’s out, we’ve got our training ground back and we’ve got nine games to make it a memorable season.

“If we win our two games in hand we’re one point off top so we’re in a great position.

“We deserve that chance (to win promotion) because we’ve been in and around the top four the whole season and that is because the players have been consistent in what they’ve done.

“I’ve told the players that I don’t want them to do anything different. Let’s keep doing what we’ve done day in, day out all season and let’s see where it takes us.”

Walsall take on Nigel Adkins’ mid-table Sheffield United at Bramall Lane this weekend – and Whitney is predicting a tricky test.

“I’ve watched them play a few times this season so I know a lot about their players and how they play,” he said.

“They’re a strong team, particularly at home. They’re nine points off the play-offs now and I know Nigel will have been disappointed with their recent result at Southend (a 3-1 defeat).

“They had some good chances to win the game and had they taken those it would have been a different story.

“They’ll be a real danger but we’ll be a force to be reckoned with at Bramall Lane on Saturday.”

Whitney also confirmed that the Saddlers’ enforced break due to internationals has helped his squad on the injury front.

"Everything over the past fortnight has gone to plan,” Whitney added.

“We had a couple of lads who had a few little niggles but they are now back up and running, so we have got a fully fit squad to pick from.

“That gives me a really nice problem. The players are all fighting for places and we are really looking forward to the game.”

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