nPower League 1
Tuesday 18th September
The Lamex Stadium, Stevenage
Kick Off: 7.45pm
Weather Forecast: Sunny, 13°c
Referee: J Adcock (Nottinghamshire)
After the drama of Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Crewe, Stevenage are back at home again this Tuesday evening as they host Walsall at The Lamex Stadium.
The club is repeating the “Bring a mate through the gate” offer for this game which proved so successful against Carlisle towards the end of last season. This offer enables season ticket holders the chance to bring a friend to this fixture free of charge. For more information click here.
Despite flirting with relegation last season Walsall have made a mightily impressive start to this new campaign, picking up 11 points from their first six games and beating a number of sides perceived to be the bigger teams in the division. They therefore provide a serious threat to Boro this Tuesday evening and the hosts will need to be on top form if they are to grab that elusive first home win of the league season and stop Walsall’s unbeaten run.
Last time we met:
Boro and Walsall shared the points on both occasions they met last season, with the most recent being the 1-1 draw at Walsall back in March. The Saddlers took an early lead when Andy Butler controlled a knockdown and fired an angled shot past Chris Day. But Boro grabbed a spectacular equaliser as a Jennison Myrie-Williams cross was not cleared and Michael Bostwick fired home from 25 yards. Walsall had a chance to take all three points late on, but Emmanuel Ledesma shot wide.
Boro: Day; Henry (Long), Ashton, Roberts, Charles, Wilson, Byrom, Bostwick, Laird, Reid (Freeman), Agyemang (Myrie-Williams)
Subs not used: Julian, Shroot
Stevenage could recall Robin Shroot for this game after the midfielder notched his fourth goal of the season to claim a point against Crewe. Greg Tansey could also come into contention after appearing as sub in that game but Robbie Rogers and Filipe Morais are both doubts with hamstring injuries.
Walsall are likely to be unchanged from the side which won 2-1 at Portsmouth on Saturday. That will mean Northern Ireland international Will Grigg will start on the bench, whilst James Chambers (knee) remains on the road to recovery following injury.
The Walsall Scout Report
Walsall currently sit in fifth place in League 1 after picking up 11 points from their opening six games. After starting with a 3-0 home defeat to Doncaster and then picking up a point at Oldham, the Saddlers really kick started their season with a 1-0 win at Notts County, a 2-2 draw with high-flying Brentford and a superb 1-0 win against MK Dons and an even better 2-1 win at Portsmouth on Saturday. They also beat Brentford 1-0 in round one of the Capital One Cup to earn a tie with Premier League big spenders QPR, who ran out comfortable 3-0 winners in the second round fixture.
Possible Walsall line-up for Tuesday (4-3-3 formation)
David Grof; Ben Purkiss, Dean Holden, Andy Butler, Andy Taylor; Nicky Featherstone, Florent Cuvelier, Ashley Hemmings; James Baxendale, George Bowerman, Jamie Paterson
Subs from: Will Grigg, Richard Taundry, Paul Downing, Richard Jones, Connor Taylor, Aaron Williams, Jake Jones
If Walsall are to maintain their excellent run of form then they will need players like Will Grigg to find the back of the net on a regular basis. The 21-year old striker has hardly been prolific since coming up through the ranks, with only nine goals in over 60 appearances, however he continues to impress for the Saddlers and make his international debut for Northern Ireland in the 6-0 friendly loss in Holland earlier this summer.
• Founded in 1888 as Walsall Town Swifts, the club has spent its entire existence outside of English football’s top division.
• The club’s nickname, The Saddlers, reflects the town’s status as a traditional centre for saddle manufacture.
• Famous fans of the Saddlers include music impresario Pete Waterman.
• The highest transfer fee received by Walsall was £1m for Scott Dann when he moved to Coventry City in January 2008. In contrast, their largest transfer fee paid was £175,000 for Alan Buckley from Birmingham City in June 1979.
• The referee for this game will be James Adcock from Nottinghamshire. This will be his first time in charge of a Boro game, however he last refereed Walsall in August 2011 in a 2-1 victory for the Saddlers against Shrewsbury in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy.
• The next appearance for both Bondz N’Gala and Robbie Rogers will be their 5th for the club respectively.
• Should Patrick Agyemang make an appearance in this game then it will be his 20th overall for the club (15 starts, four sub appearances, one goal).