Scotia Smith's match report...
On a lovely, bright, October afternoon, the Saddlers welcomed their near neighbours to the Bescot for an important league match. A decent crowd of 4759 witnessed a very dramatic afternoon.
The game started slowly with both sides swapping possession. Then, a beautiful pass from Oztumer in the 22nd minute set Bakayoko free and the big man raced on to the ball and lashed it past the keeper to put us in front. GOAL!!
However, the lead didn’t last long and in the 29th minute ex-Saddler, Lancashire, nodded in an equalizer from a free kick. GOAL!!
Both sides created more chances and it looked like another goal was on its way soon……thankfully the home side got it just before half-time. Morris turned in a rebound from the keeper to put us ahead in the 41st minute. GOAL!!
As the players trudged off at the break, the second half looked like being a good one….it was!!
Shrewsbury started the half very well. They piled on the pressure and eventually Brown turned a loose ball in for their second equalizer in the 57th minute. GOAL!!
The game was bubbling up nicely now…..and in the 65th minute McGivern was sent off for Shrewsbury. Walsall sensed a weakness and really went for the winning goal.
The pressure paid off when Oztumer scored a dramatic late winner direct from a corner in the 88th minute – although it might have been an O.G. from Ebanks-Blake. GOAL!!
The ground erupted and poor Bakayoko got a second yellow for over celebrating the winner!
The manager was extremely chuffed in the press conference afterwards but felt that Baka’s sending off was a bit harsh taking into account the emotion of the game.
Walsall is up to 14th and Gillingham and Coventry are next for us…