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FLASHBACK FRIDAY: WALSALL 3-2 CHESTERFIELD

7 April 2017

Goals from Ledesma (2) and Mantom...

Saturday April 7th 2012 - Walsall 3-2 Chesterfield

Walsall entered the game looking to extend their unbeaten run to ten games, fantastic form that would help the Reds in their bid to retain League One status. 

Chesterfield, on the other hand, were in deep trouble, 13 points from safety at the bottom of the table. The away side needed a miracle in order to turn their form around. 

Representing the Saddlers in this pivotal game were Hungarian back-up keeper David Grof - making one of his 23 appearances for the club - well-travelled current Lincoln full-back Lee Beevers, ex-Blues and current Shrewsbury man Mat Sadler, with club captain and legendary centre-back Andy Butler partnered by the indomitable current Gateshead defender Manny Smith. 

The midfield featured recent crowd favourite Sam Mantom, current Guiseley wide man Kevan Hurst, Belgian Florent Cuvelier - in his first spell at the Banks’s on loan from Stoke - along with local lad Alex Nicholls, playing in a wide role.

The mercurial Argentinian Middlesbrough loanee Emmanuel Ledesma was supported by experienced ex-Manchester City striker Jon Macken. 

Current skipper Adam Chambers and popular current Bristol City wide-man Jamie Paterson made appearances from the bench. 

The Spireites took the lead in the first half when current Walsall midfielder Franck Moussa expertly headed home Liam Ridehalgh's left-wing cross. 

Shortly after, Macken displayed fine footwork before finding Ledesma, who received the ball on his right foot and placed a shot past Chesterfield ‘keeper Tommy Lee and into the back of the net.

Five minutes later the Saddlers took the lead. After some fantastic passing play, the energetic Cuvelier drove the ball into Ledesma, who finished as cool as you like from the edge of the box for his second goal of the afternoon. 

The visitors equalised after the interval, Mark Randall finding the scoresheet with a close-range shot that beat Grof at his near post. 

But the Saddlers retook the lead almost instantly on 57 minutes. Cuvelier provided his second assist of the match, slipping in Sam Mantom who drilled a shot into the bottom left corner from just inside the area.

Come the end of the season, Walsall would finish in 19th place in League One on 50 points, just avoiding the relegation zone, whereas Chesterfield came 22nd.

Other notable fixtures on this day:
2007 - Torquay United 1-2 Walsall
1998 - Fulham 1-1 Walsall 
1990 - Swansea City 3-0 Walsall 
1987 - Walsall 3-0 Carlisle

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