Thursday, May 23, 2024

Mat Sadler wants his Walsall players to be driven by a sense of injustice

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 13 Apr 2024

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Walsall boss Mat Sadler says his side must use the injustice they are feeling to drive their play-off push after his 10 men lost 3-1 at home to Notts County.

The Saddlers went behind in 90 seconds to Sky Bet League Two top scorer Macaulay Longstaff’s 26th league goal of the season but Josh Gordon had an equaliser wrongly ruled offside.

Aaron Nemane’s brilliant solo effort doubled County’s lead and Walsall were denied by a goal-line clearance and the woodwork as losing midfielder Brandon Comley.

Mo Faal’s cool finish gave them a lifeline but the Magpies instantly restored their two-goal cushion through Sam Austin to leave Walsall three points off the top seven with three games remaining.

“I’m frustrated we conceded so early,” said Sadler. “But there were many frustrations – the goal that Josh scores is frustrating, disallowed for offside but it wasn’t. He’s definitely onside.

“Sometimes football is like that – we are at the whim of human decisions and human errors, and that’s the same for us, we are all fallible. But they didn’t go our way today.

“Chances came and went, we didn’t tuck them away in key moments. We hit the post in the first 30 seconds of the second half, those moments are pivotal in games.

“The good thing is that with how results played out elsewhere, it’s kind of ‘as you were’.”

He continued: “So we go into Tuesday night’s game [against Swindon] now wanting to feel like the world is against us, that the footballing gods are against us and we have to come out fighting.

“It’s right there in our fingertips to play for – an opportunity has been missed today and we know that but there’s another opportunity on Tuesday.”

County, meanwhile, registered back-to-back wins for the first time under boss Stuart Maynard but the play-offs are out of reach barring a miracle.

“I’m delighted with back-to-back wins for the boys, they deserve it,” he said.

“It kind of hindered us a little bit when they went down to 10 men because the game went a little bit chaotic and it took a bit of structure out of the game.

“If you look at our intensity out of possession today, it was outstanding from minute one, it started with the front two setting the press, getting after them early. I thought we were excellent today.

“Winning is a habit and that is something we want to install again. We are starting to see the results are coming with the performance levels.

“We knew that with the bad batch of results we’d had, the play-offs had been taken away from us but we will keep going to the end. It is disappointing that we are not closer to being in that race.”

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