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Match Reports

Match Report: Grimsby Town 1-6 Walsall

1 January 2024

Match Reports

Match Report: Grimsby Town 1-6 Walsall

1 January 2024

The Saddlers continued their fine form over the Christmas period with a super showing on New Year's Day as Mat Sadler’s men came from behind to secure all three points against Grimsby Town at Blundell Park.

Goals from Douglas James-Taylor and Isaac Hutchinson completed a first half turnaround for the Saddlers after Danny Rose had opened the scoring for the home side. 

In what was a fairly laboured opening to the first game of 2024, it was the lively Tom Knowles who went close to opening the scoring with a near post effort but Harvey Cartwright was in the right place to protect his near post with a fine save. 

Just two minutes later and the home side themselves went close as Rose played a neat through ball into the path of Abo Eisa but the tricky winger was denied by Jackson Smith from close range. 

The home side did then take the lead after 29 minutes as Rose was left unmarked six yards out and he took one touch to control the fizzed pass before slotting into the bottom corner past Smith. 

But the Saddlers were back on level terms less than 10 minutes later as James-Taylor pinched the ball off Tobias Mullarkey before driving into the 18-yard box and smashing it into the top right corner of Cartwright’s goal. 

Five minutes later and the turnaround was complete when Hutchinson netted his tenth goal of the season in all competitions. 

A right-wing cross from Knowles was cleared only as far as James-Taylor who cushioned a pass into the path of Hutchinson who composed himself before finding the bottom corner with a superb finish. 

Into the second half and the Saddlers continued the momentum they had picked up at the end of the first half with two goals inside the first nine minutes. 

Danny Johnson, who came on in the first half to replace the injured Freddie Draper, waited patiently with the ball on the edge of the area before slotting the ball in behind the Grimsby defence for Jack Earing to run onto and fire low beyond Cartwright in the Town goal. 

Similarly to the second goal for the Saddlers, our second of the second half and our fourth of the game, came five minutes later as Earing was bundled over inside the penalty area and referee Ed Duckworth had no choice but to point to the spot.

Up stepped Hutchinson to calmly slide the ball into the bottom right corner sending Cartwright the wrong way. 

On 66 minutes, the Saddlers made it five when Taylor Allen swung in a right wing corner and Priestley Farquharson arrived right on time to bundle the ball home from no more than six yards out.

The travelling 215 Saddlers supporters had even more reason to celebrate in added time, as Johnson was in the right place at the right time to convert from close range following a cross from Hutchinson from the right-hand side.

The Saddlers would go on to see the game out comfortably, securing their third successive win in the league for the first time this season and making it the perfect start to 2024. 

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