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Pre-match: Sadler keen to see players take their opportunity

22 September 2023

Club News

Pre-match: Sadler keen to see players take their opportunity

22 September 2023

Walsall Head Coach Mat Sadler is pleased to have healthy competition in the squad and has challenged his players to stake their claim when opportunities open up.

The Saddlers will be looking to get back to winning ways when they take on AFC Wimbledon at the Poundland Bescot Stadium tomorrow afternoon.

Walsall will be without Tom Knowles, who will be serving a suspension, and Sadler is keen to see whoever deputises for the 24-year-old to grasp the opportunity.

It’s been a frustrating start to the campaign for Knowles and the Head Coach is hoping he can build some consistency after he serves his ban.

“Unfortunately, with Tom at the moment, he can’t get that momentum going into his game whether that be through illness, now suspension and the injury that he had so it’s been a really stop-start beginning to his season and he’s champing at the bit to be playing week in, week out,” Sadler said.

“But as I always state, opportunity knocks and there’s an opportunity for somebody else to stake their claim and I look forward to seeing what they can do at the weekend.

“There are opportunities everywhere for players to come in and say ‘I’m the one to go in there’ and that’s the way I’ve put the group together. That’s what I want the group to be like and there to be competition all over the pitch, which there is so healthy competition is good and it's a good opportunity for somebody else to go into the team this week.”

The Saddlers are back at home tomorrow after back-to-back away trips.

Sadler’s side have won two and drawn one of their three league outings at the Poundland Bescot Stadium and the Walsall boss is pleased to be back at home and eager to kickstart another positive run.

“We’re desperate to win every game that we play,” he commented.

“We won away at Salford then we wanted to back that up with another win at Swindon, it wasn’t to be on the day and we go into this week wanting to begin another run.

“It feels like we’ve been on the road a lot to start the season so we’re looking forward to being at home again and we want to continue the run we’ve been on at home so it’s another great opportunity to begin another run and continue the run of that home form.”

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