10 man Walsall in dramatic defeat
Walsall's hearts were broken tonight after coming away pointless in a dramatic clash at the Galpharm. Mark Hughes was sent off for the 2nd time in 6 games for a professional foul.
The Saddlers played the first half all over the place, as Huddersfield ran rings around them and Byfield and Deeney were virtually redundant up front.
It was on minute 21 that Huddersfield got their breakthrough. Mark Hughes brought down Jordan Rhodes in the area as he was on target for goal. The defender was instantly shown red and Theo Robinson put the penalty neatly past Gilmartin.
Walsall just about kept the score at 1-0 as Huddersfield showed their 6th place quality for the rest of the half, but on 46 minutes that Jordan Rhodes made it 2 for the Terriers. The striker put the shot away from the left on the edge of the penalty area.
A firm ticking off by Chris Hutchings no doubt ensued in the dressing room at half time, and it must have worked to bring a Walsall fight back.
Nicholls came on for Byfield as the action resumed.
Huddersfield let 10 man Walsall into the game and the play was more balanced, but the Saddlers still had a hill to climb.
Deeney gave hope to the Walsall side on the 63rd minute, as he fired the ball from low into the back of the net. He had to wait just 6 minutes to amazingly bring the score level, putting the ball into the top left of the net.
On 74 minutes another good Walsall chance came when a corner taken by Julian Gray found the head of Clayton McDonald, but the defender put the ball to the left of the goal.
It was on 82 minutes that Alex Nicholls made the score 3-2 Saddlers. The striker put the ball past keeper Smithies from inside the penalty box. The travelling fans could only look on in disbelief on how the game was now going their way.
However, the party did not last for long. This time Huddersfield pulled the score back to make it 3-3 7 minutes later. Anthony Kay put a close range header past Gilmartin.
But it was not to be Walsall's night. Lee Novak grabbed a a late winner in the 92nd minute, firing his shot into the back of the net.
This may be another away defeat for the Saddlers, but they can take away positives from the game. Hopefully they will put their spirited second half performance into their game at Swindon on Saturday.