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Impressive

Walsall
1 - 1
Aston Villa

The Bank's Stadium

7.45 07/08/07

Attendance: 7,000

Referee:

Walsall survived an early set back and took a share of the honours against Premiership big boys Aston Villa. The Villians named a strong side, including powerhorse Marlon Harewood up front. It was the Premiership opposition that were faster out of the blocks, showing their class as they stretched Walsall with their pace and movement. It was no surprise when they took the lead early on and the goal seemed to indicate that this would be the start of many more. Darren Wrack dallied on the ball, possession was taken off him and a lower cross was fired to the far post, no one was there but Paul Boertian who stuck out a foot and sent the ball into the roof of his own net. Villa continued to press but the Saddlers got to grips with the game before the half time whistle. But the Saddlers looked overwelmed and unwilling to raise their game risking injury or tiredness for the season opener. Eddie Sonko was particulary impressive showing clever touches on the wing.

It was the Gambian International who was replaced at half time , Walsall were now a side willing to raise the bar in search of an equaliser. The Villa side struggled to adapt to the change in tempo of the play but did look dangerous on the break with Shaun Malonely ever willing to break away. The Saddlers kept coming, Hall looked determined to make something happen and Dobson and Sonner were fabulous in midfield, keeping possession and spreading the play.

It was former Northern Ireland International Danny Sonner who should have equalised, free at the back post he spinned his volley into the crowd. Canerio came on for Mooney, Ismael for Butler and then the Saddlers seemed to have a cutting edge. Canerio seems to be getting better every game and Ismael was the most skilled player on the park as the livefire winger cut through the Villa back line at will. The Saddlers were getting closer to an equaliser, McDermott came on for Dobson and a trialist came on for Fox, both impressed.

Ismael broke again, crossing to the back post and Paul Hall stabbed home a deserved equaliser for the Saddlers. The Walsall side survived a late free kick from Villa to hold onto an impressive but tiring draw, will this match be a help or hinderance for Walsall on Saturday?

Star Player

Ismael, the best player on the pitch.


Writer:Alsop Richards
Date:Wednesday August 8 2007
Time: 8:37AM

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League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
1 Sheff Utd 38 23 9 6 78 30
2 Bolton 38 21 9 8 72 26
3 Fleetwood 38 19 11 8 68 19
4 Bradford 39 16 18 5 66 16
5 Scunthorpe 39 18 10 11 64 20
6 Southend 38 16 12 10 60 11
7 Millwall 37 16 12 9 60 9
8 Bristol Rovers 39 15 12 12 57 0
9 Oxford 38 16 7 15 55 5
10 Rochdale 37 15 9 13 54 4
11 Walsall 39 13 14 12 53 -2
12 Peterborough 39 14 10 15 52 0
13 Wimbledon 38 12 15 11 51 3
14 Northampton 39 14 7 18 49 -6
15 Charlton 39 10 17 12 47 3
16 MK Dons 38 12 11 15 47 -1
17 Bury 39 12 9 18 45 -7
18 Gillingham 39 11 12 16 45 -16
19 Oldham 39 10 14 15 44 -12
20 Shrewsbury 38 11 10 17 43 -12
21 Port Vale 37 10 11 16 41 -17
22 Swindon 39 9 9 21 36 -19
23 Chesterfield 39 8 9 22 33 -26
24 Coventry 39 6 11 22 29 -28
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