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Roberts pleased to be back in the team

28 April 2017

Centre-back impressed against the Valiants...

Young defender Kory Roberts was pleased to be back in the Saddlers’ starting XI for the League One match with Port Vale. 

The 19-year-old produced an assured performance against the Valiants, winning the majority of his aerial duels and making a crucial, goal-saving block to deny Billy Reeves. 

And while disappointing to be on the losing team, Roberts was happy with his own display. 

“Other than the result, I thought the game went well and I had a good game,” he said. 

“It was disappointing about the result but it was a good experience to be back with the first-team, playing at a high-tempo. To be back felt good.” 

With Celtic loanee Eoghan O’Connell suspended, Roberts was deployed on the left-hand side of a three-man central defence. 

And the teenager, who captained the Development Squad to the Central League North West Division title earlier this campaign, admits he enjoys playing in a back three. 

“I find it good in a three,” he added. “I think it’s easier to play out from the back as a three and get on the ball. 

“With defending, there are more bodies around the middle to get round the ball and break down their play.” 

The Vale match was Roberts’ third outing for the senior side – and the defender is hoping for more first-team involvement next year. 

“I didn’t expect to break into the first-team in my first year,” he commented. “I’ve come in and I think I’ve done well. 

“I’ve been playing with the reserve team, we won our league, and I was captain of that so it’s gone well this year. 

“For next season, hopefully I will get as many appearances as I can for the first-team, but I’ve got to keep working hard.”

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