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Swift downfall or ever-rising?

Swift downfall or ever-rising?

Since November, there has been a massive turnaround. Fifth in League One, supposedly £2m better off (unless you Ian Dowie)and yet there is still a little bit of uncertainty about the rest of the season. Don't get me wrong, I am a very happy Saddler at the moment, my expectations have been exceeded, but after the departure of Danny Fox and Scott Dann to Coventry you start to ask a few questions. It's all very well cashing in on your best players, but it's only a good thing when you re-invest the money back into the squad - which so far has brought us an nowt (at least one player)! Why?

I'm not going to blabber on about Jeff Bonser this, Jeff Bonser that because he may like to have a tight ruling over the pennies, but we are in a more positive situation than we have been. At least he has been man enough to admit his mistakes over the last few years (not leaving being one of them...damn, it slipped out, I was trying to be impartial!). We have had, allegedly a lot of income from the January Banks's sale with Foxy and Dann the man departing to the Ricoh, however I am yet to see players such as Michael Ricketts become permanent. It's all very well signing players on loan, and as a smaller less fortunate club in a financial sense, we have to. However, when you get some money in, it needs to go back into the playing budget, funding player's of Ricketts mould. Walsall don't do this. We would rather see the opportunity slip through our butter fingers.

Where does this leave the club for the rest of the season? Well, the Play-Offs, as I have already pointed out earlier in the season, are a distinct possibility, especially as we have seen one of the most in-form Saddlers sides in a long while take to the pitch this season. However, will the sales of key players harm those chances? I think it may hinder them a little, but with Ropes entering the frame and we have talent in the wings in the form of Mannie Smith, who gives a stuff? One thing's for sure - we are moving in the right direction.

Writer:Richard Pugh
Date:Friday February 15 2008
Time: 10:50PM

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# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Sheff Utd 27 17 5 5 56 21
2 Scunthorpe 27 16 7 4 55 27
3 Bolton 26 15 5 6 50 16
4 Bradford 27 11 12 4 45 11
5 Rochdale 26 14 3 9 45 9
6 Fleetwood 26 12 7 7 43 10
7 Southend 27 11 9 7 42 5
8 Millwall 26 11 6 9 39 2
9 Bristol Rovers 27 11 6 10 39 -1
10 Peterborough 25 10 8 7 38 8
11 Charlton 26 8 12 6 36 7
12 Wimbledon 26 9 9 8 36 5
13 Oxford 26 9 7 10 34 0
14 Walsall 26 8 10 8 34 -4
15 Port Vale 25 8 7 10 31 -10
16 Northampton 27 8 6 13 30 -7
17 Gillingham 26 8 6 12 30 -9
18 Swindon 27 7 8 12 29 -13
19 MK Dons 25 7 7 11 28 -5
20 Bury 27 7 4 16 25 -12
21 Shrewsbury 27 6 7 14 25 -14
22 Chesterfield 27 7 4 16 25 -17
23 Oldham 25 4 10 11 22 -14
24 Coventry 26 4 9 13 21 -15
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