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YOUNG REPORTER: WALSALL 1-1 OXFORD

10 April 2017

Scotia Smith's match report...

On a beautiful Spring day, a crowd of almost 5,500 (1146 away fans) turned up to see if the Saddlers could end a run of three straight defeats against mid-table Oxford. 

The game started with the home side surging forward and piling on the pressure. Laird had the ball in the net after only 3 minutes ….but he was offside! Then Morris hit the post with a terrific low shot. 

After that, the game settled down and Oxford came into it more. Etheridge made his usual excellent save or two to keep it even. 

The only other thing that happened in the first half was that the Skip took a bash on the head and had to go off for a while with blood pouring out of a cut. Ouch! 

GOAL!! The second half was only a few minutes old when Makris scored an amazing volley from just outside the box. His left foot shot flew into the top corner for his first ever goal. The place went absolutely bonkers and he was mobbed by his team mates. 

Oxford now really came into the game. A big goalmouth scramble nearly led to an equalizer. The manager brought some subs on to stem the tide – Jackson and Dobson for Makris and Moussa. 

GOAL! The pressure told in the 73rd minute when Maguire’s long shot was deflected past a diving Etheridge. 

Cuvelier replaced Morris and both teams had chances to win it. However, at the final whistle, a draw was probably a fair result. 

In the press conference, JW said he was really happy for Makris and that he took him off because he was emotionally drained. He also wanted the team to stay focused and positive for the rest of the season.

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