Saturday 7th February 2015 (3pm), Sky Bet League One, Keepmoat Stadium.Friendships will be put on hold this Saturday as Doncaster Rovers look to get back to winning ways at home to Walsall on Saturday.
Former Rovers assistant manager Richard O’Kelly is now with the Saddlers, as are former players James Baxendale, James Chambers and James O’Connor; while Andy Butler – a former Walsall player of the year – is now a part of the Keepmoat Stadium furniture.
Paul Dickov’s side – who are unbeaten in their last seven league outings – were dealt a hefty blow by the Saddlers in September as they fell to a 3-0 defeat at Banks’s Stadium.
Though he wasn’t at fault for any of the goals, Slovakian goalkeeper Marko Marosi was thrown in at the deep end after 30 minutes due to an injury to loanee goalkeeper Jed Steer and conceded all the goals on a miserable first team debut.
Goals from James Baxendale, Tom Bradshaw and Anthony Forde ensured the three points stayed in the Black Country.
Walsall, who’ve reached this season’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy final, sit in 16th position in the League One table but are only five points off the play off places.
The Saddlers recent record against Doncaster is favourable, also, as they have only lost one of their last five outings against the South Yorkshire side.
Their last outing to Keepmoat Stadium was in the 2012/13 season – almost two years to the day exactly – when Billy Paynter’s 16th minute strike was sandwiched by goals from Butler and Fabian Brandy.
Attendance – 7013
Walsall 2 (Butler, 2; Brandy, 81)
DRFC 1 (Paynter, 16)
Last time out (9th February 2013):
DRFC – G Woods, J McCombe, P Quinn, T Spurr, R Jones, J Coppinger, D Cotterill, P Keegan (L Fowler, 65), J Harper, B Paynter (K Bennett, 76), C Brown
Walsall - I McLoughlin, A Butler, B Purkiss (J Chambers, 42), A Taylor, P Downing, J Baxendale (C Westcarr, 68), A Chambers, S Mantom, F Brandy (N Featherstone, 89), W Grigg, J Paterson
Head to head league results (in Doncaster):
Rovers – 14
Walsall – 8
Draws – 6
Rovers – James Coppinger is doubtful to make his 441st appearance for Doncaster, following an ankle injury suffered at Chesterfield. Abdul Razak is yet to receive international clearance. Uche Ikpeazu should make his home debut.
Walsall – Hotshot striker Tom Bradshaw will miss out (hamstring) and looks set to be replaced by Manchester City loanee Jordy Hiwula.
Fancy a flutter? Rovers 5/4, Draw 12/5, Walsall 5/2.
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