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Academy

Under-18s report: Walsall 2-0 Accrington Stanley

22 March 2018

On Saturday morning a dominant Walsall Under 18’s side brushed passed Accrington Stanley with goals from Dylan Parker and Dan O’Sullivan giving Graham Biggs’ side their second win in just over a week.

In a game that the young Saddlers side enjoyed the vast majority of possession, they were largely frustrated in the first half with visitors Stanley keeping themselves in the game despite some shaky defending. 

However, the Saddlers had to wait less than a minute into the second half to get their just rewards when Parker finished emphatically past visiting keeper Nathan Wolland giving the host a thoroughly deserved lead. 

And Biggs’ side extended their lead to two less than ten minutes into the second half when Parker played in O’Sullivan with a sublime pass from the left-wing and without rushing, the influential number seven bided his time before slotting the ball home to secure all three point in the EFL Youth Alliance fixture. 

After the game, Biggs spoke of his delight that his side were able to build off their 6-0 battering of Tranmere last week. 

He said: “Last week we won 6-0 and usually after a game we don’t have another one to follow it up the week after so our results look a bit scattered.

"So I was pleased for the lads to have something to follow up this week. 

“We beat Tranmere last week and we were excellent on the day and it was important for us to have this game today so the lads could carry their confidence over from that win and that was the message throughout the week and I thought it really showed in our win over Accrington. 

“Our philosophy with them is to make them a passing team and I thought we saw signs of just how good we are at doing that, especially in the first half, I thought we were terrific. 

“We did everything but score in the first half but the way we approached the goal, our distances, our football technique, it was excellent.

“At half-time we said to the lads not to get obsessed with scoring goals, just keep doing what you’re doing and it will come and funnily enough it came less than 60 seconds into the second half. 

“The better we got in the second half, the more frustrated Accrington got and that’s a testament to the lads, they were brilliant.”

With the appointment of a new First Team Manager this week in the form of Saddlers legend Dean Keates, Biggs was keen to keep things as normal as possible for his side, as well as trying to showcase them and their talents. 

He continued: “It has been a strange week at the club with the old manager leaving and the new manager being brought in but we have tried to keep things as normal as possible with our boys and they have trained very very well this week in the build up to this game. 

“We’ve now scored eight goals in two games and we’ve also kept two clean sheets and we just want to show Dean Keates that our boys are ready to learn and that they are ready to step in should an opportunity arise for them. 

“At the end of the day they are still young men and even though they may look fantastic on pitch, they certainly aren’t the finished article so even if they do make mistakes then they will learn from them.

"Hopefully with the performances they have put in in the last week and a bit it will show that some of them might be ready to take it to the next level.”


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