Walsall V Lincoln City
Friday 16th Feb 2007
Since last saturdays defeat at the hands of Hartlepool, the doom and gloom merchants have been out in numbers. If the points raised are valid only time will tell. The facts are however simple, our recent form has allowed the chasing pack to catch up, true. The important part is our previous form has meant that this dip has allowed us to maintain our top position, and in fact we will still be top if we lose Friday.
However another fact is that defeat on saturday now puts us under increased pressure. Also confidence must have taken a bit of a bashing in recent games. There lies the real concern, you can't buy in confidence. Also those players who were with us last season buckled under relegation pressure, did they learn the lesson, or is it a character fault that will come back and haunt us.
Lincoln have also been on a bit of a doggy run away from home recently but are a decent team who will put us to the test.
There are usual pre match interviews around and about, with Dean Keates been high profile due to his played for both sides status.
The interesting thing from DD is let another rallying call for the fans to get behind the team and we are in it together etc. This however is in the same week that DD stated that Tony Bedeau has a problem playing at home, funny that the he has been target of some terrace verbals. Also he has spoken about the potential of Par Cederqvist, but again queries if he will fullfill that promise with the current weight of expectation off the terraces.........is there signs of DD losing patience with the vocal minority.
Walsall Team News:
It is hoped that some of our defensive injuries have cleared up of the missing centre halfs Alan Picken still needs reserve games.Whilst Anthony Gerrard and Ian Roper travelled but didn't make it on saturday so hopefully one if not both will make it. In which case Chris Westwood will move back to right back, Fox or Kris Taylor on the left.
In midfield Keates and Dobson look likely to start, but in what mixture and with what man power out wide, as DD will looking to recreate a winning midfield.
Up front last weekend it was Par and Martin, Hector Sam may force his way back especially if DD fears the pressure on the young Par.
Player to watch: Dean Keates
Tremendous goals for record so far this season and another against his former club would be most welcome.
Lincoln City Team News:
Lee Beevers picked up his fifth booking against Torquay on saturday However his suspension doesn't start until the 17th so he will play unlike hot shot Jamie Forester who sits out his second game. This leaves Stallard upfront with a new partner last week Spencer weir daley took the shirt. The other striking option former Boston striker/midfielder Danny N'Guessan only lasted 9 minutes in there last game and is rated 50/50
Otherwise it will be a very similar line up to the Torquay game I would expect.
Player to watch: Mark Stallard
When the experienced striker moved from Shrewsbury in the summer nobody battered an eyelid. Lucky for the Imps this shrewd piece of work has brought not only a rekindling of his career and goals for record but the partnership with Jamie Forester has been a real success story.
Match Facts & Stats
last 6 results of this fixture
Football League One Walsall 2-1 Lincoln City 10-11-1998
Football League Two Walsall 2-1 Lincoln City 20-08-1994
Football League Two Walsall 5-2 Lincoln City 20-11-1993
Football League Two Walsall 1-2 Lincoln City 27-02-1993
English Division 4 Walsall 0-0 Lincoln City 05-11-1991
English Division 4 Walsall 0-0 Lincoln City
Lincoln have struggled away from home failing to win in there last four away games.
Lincoln 1-0 Torquay
Notts County 3 - 1 Lincoln
Lincoln 1 - 0 Peterborough
Bury 2 - 2 Lincoln
Lincoln 1 - 1 Shrewsbury
MK Dons 2 - 2 Lincoln
Macclesfield 2 - 1 Lincoln
Mr P Taylor Ref of Walsall at Bristol Rovers and didn't upset too many people, has issues 77 yellows and seven reds in his 24 games this season.
First goal could be important to both teams in terms of confidence. However I will go for a close game with a Saddlers win,fingers crossed.
A trip to inform Stockport County on tuesday before welcoming Barnet to Bescot next saturday.