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Club News

PRE MATCH | Taylor looking forward to Exeter test

1 October 2021

Club News

PRE MATCH | Taylor looking forward to Exeter test

1 October 2021

Walsall Head Coach Matt Taylor is looking forward to the challenge of facing Exeter City and hopes his side can upset the form guide.

The Saddlers will be aiming to pick up their first away win of the campaign at St James’ Park tomorrow afternoon. 

Taylor insists his team will need to be clinical when presented with opportunities against the Grecians who will be looking to preserve their unbeaten home league record this season.

“You’ve got to earn the right to play because you’re going to their home ground, their home patch and every team in this division, up and down the country defends that with their lives,” he said.

“Therefore, if you look at the form Exeter are in at home, it’s positive. It’s a great challenge and a great game for us to have because I would say the majority of people would expect us to go there and not come away with anything.

“I, on the other hand, think completely differently – as do the coaches and the players. We have to match their intensity, we have to match their desire and if we do that, we have good players and we will 100 per cent create opportunities but we have to be more ruthless.

“We will hopefully have a period on Saturday when we’re on top – we’ve got to take our chances because we do know Exeter are a dangerous team and if we don’t take our chances then we always run the risk of if we have a slight lead or are drawing the game, of losing it.

“We’ve been through that in the last two games and I don’t want a reoccurrence of that, the players don’t want that and what we’ve got to do is make sure that doesn’t happen again.

“That doesn’t happen again through hard work and honest conversations at the training ground. That’s what we’ve done and that’s all we can do.”

The Saddlers will have captain Joss Labadie available having completed his suspension.

The midfielder is champing at the bit to return to action and Taylor is pleased to have him back into the fold.

“Joss is the captain of the football club. He made a mistake and he was severely punished for it but his attitude to this point, he’s missed three weeks of football so he’s itching at the bit to get back into the team,” Taylor commented.

“It will be great to have him back in and around the squad. The team hasn’t been picked yet; I must make that very clear.

“There’s competition for places, training today was very good. I thought the quality was high and there were a lot of things that we worked on to hopefully take into the game at the weekend.

“We’re still asking the players to be competitive and they have done this week so we’ve got the opportunity on Saturday away from home to do something we haven’t done this season which is try and win a game of football.”

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