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Keates hails Saddlers' defensive resilience

21 August 2018

Dean Keates hailed his side’s defensive resilience after the Saddlers made it three straight wins by beating previously unbeaten AFC Wimbledon.

Kieron Morris’ first goal of the season, Will Nightingale’s calamitous own goal and Andy Cook’s fortuitous effort earned the Saddlers a battling 3-1 win.

Kwesi Appiah scored a late consolation for Neal Ardley’s Dons, who put the Saddlers under intense pressure towards the end of the first half.

But Keates was pleased with how his team - now unbeaten in five games - stood up to the task.

“We’re delighted with the result,” he said.

“We’ve been tested to the max and full credit to the players – they stood up to it.

“First 20 minutes, for me, was the best we’ve played.

“For the next 25 minutes they battered us; they had a couple of chances from distance, flashing past the post.

"But the lads defended well, stood up to be counted and that’s all you can ask for.

“A lot of times we won the first header and the second header. For all the possession and shots they had, Liam’s not had a shot to save.

“We had a bit of good fortune for the two goals but we’ve earned that over the five games.

“If you’d said we’d have ten points from 12 before the first game we’d have taken it – but we’re disappointed we haven’t got 12.”

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