S a l f o r d
C i t y
F o o t b a l l
C l u b

View Team Sheet

Team Sheet

Walsall
1
Liam Roberts
4
Mat Sadler

Bates 56'

5
James Clarke (c)
6
Dan Scarr
7
Stuart Sinclair
10
Josh Gordon
11
Elijah Adebayo
15
Rory Holden
25
Wes McDonald

Hardy 56'

26
Gary Liddle
33
Zak Jules

Cockerill-Mollett 68'

Salford City FC
12
Kyle Letheren
2
Scott Wiseman
3
Ibou Touray
1 goals for Ibou Touray
7
Luke Armstrong
1 goals for Luke Armstrong

Whitehead 87'

8
Lois Maynard
9
Adam Rooney (c)
Yellow card for Adam Rooney (c)

Dieseruvwe 80'

15
Cameron Burgess
Yellow card for Cameron Burgess
23
Nathan Pond
25
Joey Jones
Yellow card for Joey Jones
32
Jake Jervis
1 goals for Jake Jervis
44
Craig Conway

Threlkeld 76'

Substitutes
13
Jack Rose
2
Cameron Norman
8
Liam Kinsella
14
Kory Roberts
17
James Hardy
20
Alfie Bates
21
Callum Cockerill-Mollett
Substitutes
33
William Evans
4
Oscar Threlkeld
6
Carl Piergianni
10
Danny Lloyd
18
Danny Whitehead
20
Mani Dieseruvwe
34
Alex Doyle
Managers
Manager - Darrell Clarke
Managers
Manager - Graham Alexander
Match Officals
Referee - Trevor Kettle
Assistant Referee - Darren Wilding
Assistant Referee - Christopher Kidd
Fourth Official - Christopher Ward

Close Team Sheet

Match
Report

Football, as we all know, is an odd game. Walsall came into this game on the back of 4 straight league and cup wins while Salford were nursing back-to-back heavy defeats. On paper this looked likely to be another difficult afternoon for Graham Alexander and his side yet in the event they inflicted a comprehensive defeat on their in-form hosts. Goals from Luke Armstrong, Jake Jervis and Ibou Touray would secure a 3-0 win that could well prove a springboard for the Ammies’ season.

It was back to a 4-4-2 formation today in the aftermath of last week’s Forest Green Rovers mauling.Previously ever-present Carl Piergiannin being the defender to miss out as Cameron Burgess and Nathan Pond retained their places. In midfield Jake Jervis and new signing Craig Conway patrolled the flanks, with Joey Jones and Lois Maynard in the middle.

Adam Rooney returned to claim one of the strikers’ berths alongside Luke Armstrong, with Mani Dieseruvwe among the substitutes.

Summer signing Armstrong’s season has got off to a slow start, thanks to injury, but he would be influential today. As early as the 2nd minute the former Middlesbrough man curled a ball into the box, just a little bit too far in front of Rooney.

Walsall’s best period of the game would come early on and they could have gone ahead just a minute later. Rory Holden’s free-kick from the right dropped to the edge of the six-yard box where Elijah Adebayo got in a powerful header. Salford keeper Kyle Letheren was equal to it, tipping over for a corner that was cleared without too much fuss.

The Saddlers’ neat football failed to make too much more impact on a robust looking Salford defence and the visitors began to see more of the ball. A Conway free-kick from wide on the left had to be touched behind by a defender at the far post and the corner, from Salford’s right, fell for Armstrong beyond the far post. A low, angled drive followed with home keeper Liam Roberts needing a second attempt to gather the ball.

Salford had settled into their stride and there was no sign of the uncertainty that marked last week’s shaky performance. On 17 minutes Rooney played a pass out to the right and Scott Wiseman’s cross was a decent one. Jervis had managed to find a bit of space and although his header dropped over the bar, this was encouraging for the once-again vocal travelling support.

Walsall’s very early promise had dissipated somewhat but the Ammies looked increasingly confident, taking the lead on 21 minutes. Jervis’s cross from the left wasn’t cleared by the home defence and Conway did well beyond the far post, digging the ball away from Roberts before squaring a neat ball back inside.
ARMSTRONG was on the end of that pass and kept his cool to stroke a low finish inside the keeper’s left-hand post, recording his first Salford City goal.

Walsall looked to find a quick response and Holden tried his luck, 22 yards out and right-of-centre, but Letheren was able to make a comfortable stooping save. Just before the half-hour Josh Gordon’s snap-shot from distance was dealt with by the keeper and soon after that James Clarke failed to get his effort on target.

Thirteen minutes before the interval Wes McDonald cut in from Walsall’s left but his attempt to find the far top corner didn’t dip anywhere near enough to trouble Letheren.

A handful of half chances for the Saddlers but Salford were defending well, closing down effectively and looking to break whenever the opportunity presented itself. In the 35th minute Maynard’s driving run was followed by a pass to the right for Wiseman whose cross almost dropped for the lively Armstrong.

As half-time approached Walsall upped the tempo a little as they searched for a leveller. Clarke found time and space on the right to deliver a cross and Adebayo met it with an 8-yard volley. This was dangerous for Salford but Wiseman had tracked his man, getting in a crucial block that spun the ball over the crossbar for a corner.

The Saddlers went close again within a couple of minutes after Zak Jules’s pass inside from the left picked out Gordon’s run into the box. Momentum was with the home forward as he went past one challenge and almost to the line before dragging a low ball back into the middle. Cameron Burgess got their first, hoofing the ball clear from the edge of the 6-yard box with Adebayo just a little too far away to challenge.

The Ammies had a chance during the first half’s penultimate minute as Conway’s ball from the right found Jervis, whose effort was blocked. At the other end a long ball into the Salford area dropped eventually for Dan Scarr, but it was a difficult one and he could only nod an effort straight at Letheren.

HALF-TIME: WALSALL 0 SALFORD CITY 1

A very satisfactory first half from Salford’s point of view, although the Saddlers had created a couple of good opportunities. The second would be much more straightforward for the Ammies, helped in no small part by a goal scored within 4 minutes of the restart.

A throw-in on Salford’s right gave Armstrong the chance to push into the area. He almost made the most of it, slamming in a low shot from the angle that Roberts did well to stretch and palm away to his right. JERVIS was in prime position to take advantage of the loose ball, tucking a low finish inside Robert’s right-hand post. The keeper, to his credit, got something on it but not enough to prevent The Ammies from doubling their lead.

A great start to the half for Salford and in truth they would rarely look uncomfortable for the rest of the game. Jervis’s goal seemed to take the wind out of Walsall’s sails and although they would have spells of possession, there would be relatively few genuine threats to Letheren’s goal.

In fact, it was the visitors who looked more likely to add to the scoring. In the 55th minute Touray swung in a left-footed corner from the right that glanced off the head of Burgess and behind at the far post.

Saddlers’ boss Darrell Clarke made a couple of changes in an attempt to breathe life into his team’s attacking efforts but Salford would continue to dictate the play. On the hour Conway’s ball down the right was picked up by Jones, who darted past a couple of defenders on his way to the line. The cross was a cracker, dropping to the left-hand side of the box where Jervis hit a low 16-yarder that was saved and held by Roberts.

Walsall had done relatively little up front since the restart but Alfie Bates tested Letheren with a 30-yard free-kick that the keeper did well to push away to his right. A couple of minutes later Gordon moved inside from the left before hitting a tremendous rising shot that scraped past Letheren’s fingers only to come back of his right-hand upright.

A goal at that point might have meant a nervous last 20 minutes for Salford City but that would be prove to be Walsall’s last clear-cut chance. There were shouts for a penalty from the home fans (but not the players) after Gordon went to ground in the box, but Burgess’s muscular challenge had been a fair one.

Any lingering doubts over the destination of the points were swept away in the 72nd minute as the Ammies scored a 3rd goal. A fine one it was too as Conway picked up a short pass from Wiseman on the right before moving possession inside for Jervis. With the home defence watching, the Luton loanee nudged the ball to his left where TOURAY arrived on cue to hit a thunderous low shot that beat Roberts at his right-hand post.

A great finish to put the cap on an impressive Salford performance and even though there was significant time left to play, the game was in effect over.

Walsall would have more possession during the closing stages but the Ammies were in no mood to give anything away. Twelve minutes from time Scarr played in James Hardy but his rising shot was too close to Letheren.

The home side huffed and puffed as the whistle approached but their consolation goal would not materialize. In the 86th minute another spell of possession ended as Hardy’s pass found Cameron Cockerill-Mollett who was handily placed yet could only drag a low left-of-centre shot outside the far post.

The Saddlers’ frustrating afternoon was summed up in the 89th minute as Adebayo’s cross from the left was met by Gordon at the far post. His header appeared to clip off a defender on its way behind but the assistant referee upset the home fans by indicating a goal-kick.

Deep into injury time Bates hoisted one last ball into the box only for Scarr’s header to be collected by Letheren.

That was that – Walsall’s good run had come to an end and Salford City had responded in the best possible way to those two disappointing results.

FULL-TIME: WALSALL 0 SALFORD CITY 3

This was much more like it – the sort of performance away from home that was a regular feature of the 2018-2019 promotion season. Well organized, determined, strong, hard-working and with a dollop creative flair dropped into the mix.

Three good goals and a clean sheet is never a bad return, and Salford City’s first EFL win on the road was thoroughly deserved. The satisfaction and relief were plain to see at the final whistle and the challenge now is to show this sort of form on a consistent basis.

Everyone played their part today and it was good to see recent signing Conway slotting in to the side to such good effect. The Scottish international looks as if he will be a valuable addition to Graham Alexander's squad.

We’re back on the winning trail and confidence should be high for the visit of Cambridge United next Saturday – more of the same please lads…

ATTENDANCE: 4,751 (218 Salford City)

https://salfordcityfc.co.uk