Walsall 1-2 Daniel Nardiello
There is not a great deal to be said when it comes to describing last night`s performance. Desperately unlucky is something that jumps to my mind more readily than it does to a few fellow Saddlers I listened to on the radio phone-ins going home but, on another day, we would have beaten Exeter and there is no shame in admitting that we were beaten by the roll of the dice and the frame of the goal. 1st half we were by far the better team but you can`t argue with Exeter`s first goal and not even the big man upstairs could really understand just where the **** that strike came from.
I have to confess a soft spot for the Grecians and last night did nothing to dispel this hidden love. They are the southern equivalent of our good-selves and it is hard to find anything not to love. They have a poor team on paper, they have a small following and they are not going to ever be any higher than the standard they are at now; sounds familiar doesn`t it? Their fans are absolutely superb and you couldn`t help but smile at the sound of 14 blokes screaming "SIEGE" every time they went forward. Away followings are better than home followings, that is footballing fact, but their away following was by far my favourite that have visited the Banks` this season. Speaking of favourites to visit the Banks`, I think former Barnsley striker (which explains the picture of him in a Barnsley shirt) Danny Nardiello now fits into that particular bracket. Forgive me for making up words but the only way to explain his performance last night was onemanteamtastic. I`ve never seen anyone take it upon themselves to play both wings and up front at the same time but he did it and he did it pretty bloody well. He was a constant danger and really was the only man on the pitch who caught my eye in an Exeter shirt. Short of him, the Grecians two best players were the frame of the goals at each end and the only reason we didn`t take all 3 points is through our own (Will Grigg`s) failure to convert the few clear chances we had, a lack of creativity in midfield and some poor luck.
One positive to take is how good Nicho and Kevan Hurst looked. Nicho took his goal with real confidence and did not really get another chance all game. If he had, we have to assume the young man would have nailed it past Artur Krysiak in the same composed manner as he did in scoring the first goal. On the wing, Hurst really shone and he was so, so unlucky not to score. For the 2nd time in 2 home games he nearly broke the inside of the post and it is only a matter of time until one of his rocket-powered strikes finally flies past the helpless keeper into the bottom corner. Aside from those 2, and maybe Anton Peterlin, no one really impressed me and I am really unconvinced by Matt Sadler. He doesn`t fill me with confidence at all and I am still amazed by our lack of movement in the loan market thus far. We need a winger, because Paterson isn`t ready to play every week just yet, we need a full-back (or two) and we need a creative influence in midfield because Taunds, Chambo and Peterlin just don`t have the flair required to unlock defences at this level. Sort it out Deano.
It wasn`t a great game by any stretch of the imagination but I fully enjoyed listening to the travelling away support and now we`ve seen Danny Nardiello, all of us now have an answer the next time we`re quizzed on whether or not we`ve ever seen a siege before; albeit a one-man siege. Up the SADDLERS!!!