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Club News

Since we last met...Walsall

6 May 2023

Club News

Since we last met...Walsall

6 May 2023

Rovers travel to the West Midlands on Bank Holiday Monday as they look to sign off the 2022/23 Sky Bet League Two season on a positive note Walsall.

Danny Schofield’s side will be looking to see out the season with back-to-back wins after beating Colchester United last time out.

The last meeting 

The Saddlers secured all three points when the two sides met on the first Friday night of December and the result took the visitors to within a point of the League Two play-offs. 

A great passing move almost gave Rovers the lead in the first half through Max Woltman but Tom Knowles turned home in the 52nd minute to put then-head coach Michael Flynn’s side in front. 

With just under 20 minutes left to play, Danny Johnson doubled Walsall’s lead to put daylight between the sides and saw the spoils make the return trip south. 

Walsall’s recent form 

Mat Sadler’s side are winless in nine Sky Bet League Two matches - a run that stretches back to the middle of March. 

More recently, in their last six games, the Saddlers have lost four, drawn two and only managed to score four goals in that time. 

That run started with a 4-2 loss at Rochdale, despite Jamille Matt and Knowles getting on the scoresheet, before they played out a goalless draw at home to play-off hopefuls Carlisle United. 

Two and three goal losses without scoring at Crewe Alexandra and Harrogate Town respectively followed, before they suffered heartbreak against Salford City in 97th minute and lost 3-2. 

Most recently, they drew 0-0 away at Crawley Town and saw themselves slip to 17th place on the league table. 

Key men 

Midfielder Isaac Hutchinson leads the way for goals scored this season with his seven finishes being complimented by a further seven assists to total 14 goal contributions – the highest of anyone currently at the club. 

The 23-year-old left Brighton’s youth ranks in 2018 to sign for Southend United before a move to then-Championship side Derby County came in 2020. 

Having only made one senior appearances for the Rams, Hutchinson enjoyed spells out on loan before making the move to Walsall last year to enjoy the most fruitful spell of his career so far. 

Striker Andy Williams will need no introduction for Rovers fans with the talisman turning out 92 times in the red and white between 2015 and 2018. 

In a career spanning almost 20 years, the forward has enjoyed goalscoring spells with the likes of Hereford United, Yeovil Town and Swindon Town, and was memorably part of the 2016/17 Rovers squad that achieved League Two promotion. 

Last summer, the 36-year-old left Cheltenham Town for the Saddlers and has combined three goals with an assist to make four goal contributions so far this season. 

Goal scorer in the return fixture, Tom Knowles has hit double figures for goal contributions this term having scored as many goals as assisted. 

The 24-year-old graduated from Cambridge United’s academy in 2017 and went out on eight different loan spells before joining Yeovil Town and scoring 16 goals over two seasons. 

In August 2022, Knowles joined Walsall for an undisclosed fee and picked up the number 10 shirt to play an integral part in the heart of midfield, featuring 49 times in all competitions. 

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