Walsall 0-0 Peterborough United
15/11/2014 - 15:00
The Saddlers kept their ninth clean sheet of the season and extended their unbeaten run to five games, but as is so often the case lacked the prowess in the attacking third to see off mediocre opposition.
On paper this may look like just another boring goalless draw, but it was anything but as Walsall played with a much higher tempo and greater confidence than has often been the case during 2014. Again there was a distinct lack of goalscoring opportunities with there only being two shots on target in the entire game, both for us, but the performance was a lot better and we did look more dangerous when we had the ball; a point emphasised by the fact that I can`t think of a single player who you would say had a poor game today.
There was plenty of hustle and bustle about the first half as Mathieu Manset did an able job deputising for the once again crocked Tom Bradshaw in what was the only change to the side that started the JPT game against Sheffield United less than 72 hours earlier.
The game didn`t really come to life though until six minutes into the second half when Jordan Cook put in what we will call a strikers tackle on Posh left back Kgosi Ntlhe. Sensing an opportunity to get an opponent sent off, Darren Fergusons side surrounded both Cook and the referee in a way that would have made the watching Sir Alex proud; while Ntlhe decided, somewhat belatedly, to go down feigning injury. A yellow card for Cook, and one each for Sawyers and Posh`s Joe Newell and the game continued.
Both sides had penalty appeals late on when first Almeida Santos seemed to handle when chasing a ball with Grimes, who had replaced Manset. Then the visitors had a similar appeal when Ben Purkiss handled having appeared to have been pushed. In truth, both would have been harsh.
If we can get, and keep Bradshaw fit then he, Sawyers, Cook and Anthony Forde have the potential to be a very useful attacking unit at this level. Manset was ok today but lacked a goal threat, but you do get the feeling things might just be beginning to click. With cup draws meaning we now have four away games on the spin (five if we win at Strawberry Town on Tuesday night) then they`re going to need too.