Saddlers blow Clarets away with superb second half showing...Three goals earned Walsall all three points against Burnley in a superb second half performance from the Saddlers. Ben Kendrick and Joe Cairns both netted for Walsall while the other came from an own goal.
Neil Woods’ side put in a shift in the first period but came out all guns blazing in the second half to romp home 3-0.
It was a real battle in the first half in difficult, wet conditions but it was Walsall who looked the better side.
The first real chance of the game came 20 minutes in when Shorrock and Vann both went close. Firstly, Shorrock was found at the back post but his side foot volley was blocked for a corner. Then Vann, who came up from the back, was inches away from scoring from a header.
Shorrock had another chance five minutes later. Quick feet from the clever midfielder gave him a yard around the edge of the area but his shot was pushed away from the goalkeeper.
Peters then went close as the young striker robbed the ball from the Burnley defender and played a one two with Shorrock which allowed the shot but it was saved by King in net.
Then it was Burnley’s time to test the keeper as Wood smashed a low volley which was destined for the bottom corner but it was brilliantly saved by the palm of Ganley.
The final chance of the half dropped to Peters as he burst through the Burnley defence to be one on one but his low strike was well saved to keep the scores level at the break.
Half-time: Walsall 0-0 Burnley
The second half was when Walsall really turned it on and it took just three minutes of the second half to break the deadlock.
Captain Cockerill-Mollett advanced forward from left back and smashed a powerful shot at goal which stung the palms of the keeper and went out for a corner. Centre back Kendrick came forward from the resulting corner and showed more desire than anyone else in the box and fired home to give Walsall the lead.
It was then another centre half who doubled Walsall’s lead around 15 minutes later but it was to the misfortune of Burnley defender Clarke.
Walsall were passing and moving in and around the box as they looked to carve out a chance but the final ball fell to a Burnley defender and a panicked clearance cannoned off of Clarke into the back of his own net.
Burnley never really recovered from this and it was one-way traffic towards the away side’s goal.
Peters, who put in a shift all afternoon, dragged a shot wide while substitute Cairns put a first time volley just over the bar. However, Cairns made no mistake at the second time of asking as he smashed home to make it 3-0 five minutes from time.
The ball came to the feet of Cairns at the edge of the box with his back to goal, but his first touch gave him a yard away from the defender which allowed him to brilliantly fire past the keeper from range.
Full-time: Walsall 3-0 Burnley
Team: Ganley, Tonks, Cockerill-Mollett, Maddocks, Vann (Fisher 76’), Kendrick, Mason (Cairns 46’), Cela (Candlin 88’), Peters, Shorrock, Freemantle (O’Sullivan 50’).
Subs not used: Jones.