Saddlers Head Coach Matt Taylor was pleased to see his side keep a clean sheet and pick up all three points in the first group game of the season in the Papa John’s Trophy on Tuesday night against a well drilled Brighton and Hove Albion Under-23s side.
A solitary first-half goal from on-loan striker Kieran Phillips was enough to extend the Saddlers’ unbeaten record to four games in all competitions, backing up impressive results against Mansfield Town, Bradford City and Stevenage in recent weeks.
“I am pleased that we have won the game,” said Taylor.
“I think for the first 30 minutes we weren’t dominant enough out of possession. What I mean by that is that we probably gave Brighton a little bit too much respect.
“It was a different game for us tonight and a different game for our players because I spoke about before the game that they were going to dominate possession because of their style of play and I just thought it took us until 30 minutes to really get to grips with that.
“Once we did, we grew into the game and I think the sending off has helped us to see the game out.
“I was disappointed that we didn’t score more goals but overall I asked the players before the game to do the best that they could to win the game and that is what they have done so I am extremely happy and momentum is building at the football club.
“I knew Brighton would have a lot of possession early on because you see the talent that they have on show tonight.
“The way they handle the ball is good, they play in triangles, their rotations are exceptional. They were a back four but they build with a back three because of the midfielder dropping in and it just took us a while to get to grips with it but once we did and we were more aggressive and on the front foot, we managed to deal with it better.
“It’s really pleasing for Kieran to get another goal as well. The strikers are scoring goals, the forward players are adding in each and every game so from my perspective it was a really really exciting game. I would have liked us to score more goals but that is me being greedy.
“I am exceptionally happy that we have kept a clean sheet against a team that will have premier league players in that team, 100 per cent so let’s not take away from the achievement with the three points that we have won.”