Walsall Under 18s bounced back from their weekend defeat to Preston North End with a comfortable win over Rochdale.
Luke Zona opened the scoring before an own goal and further strikes from Luke Pearce and Alex McSkeane saw the Saddlers wrap up the game by half-time in a dominant display.
The first chance of the game fell to the Saddlers. Alex McSkeane danced towards the edge of the box and let fly with a low shot that clipped the outside of the post on 11 minutes.
Six minutes later, Walsall took the lead when a corner was floated in and eventually found Zona who headed it into the back of the net.
The Saddlers dominated the first half and came close again on 33 minutes when Jayden Campbell skipped into the area and rifled in a shot but it was well saved.
Miguel Llera’s side doubled their lead four minutes before half time when Campbell’s cross was turned into then net by a defender.
Three minutes later, McSkeane did brilliantly down the right before he crossed for Pearce who applied the finish from close range to make it 3-0.
The goal of the game came right on half time when McSkeane found the net from 35-yards with an absolute beauty.
Morgan Moreland came close for Rochdale at the start of the second half but his effort from close range just trickled wide.
It should have been 5-0 on 56 minutes when Joe Willis’ powerful strike cannoned off the crossbar.
The second half proved to be a quiet affair as the Saddlers saw the game out.
Jordan Scanlon fired in a shot straight at Tommy Jackson in the Walsall goal before Jayden Allamby-John came close to adding a fifth in the dying seconds with a header but it flashed just wide.
In the end, Walsall had to settle for 4-0 but it was a resounding win for Llera’s side.
Team: Jackson; Coogan, J. Perry (Walton 81’), Zona, Mukadam; Campbell (Derry 74’), Willis, Moss (Sarvari 79’), Friel, McSkeane (Francis 74’) Pearce (Allamby-John 65’).