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2-1
02 September 2017 Venue Banks's Stadium Attendance

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English Football League - League One

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Banks's Statement

Derek Keen to Show Argyle's Worth at Walsall

1 September 2017

ARGYLE are back on their travels this weekend, seeking their first away victory of the Sky Bet League One campaign but content with their performances on the road.

Banks’s Stadium, home of perennial League One side Walsall, is their next waypoint en route to Gillingham in May. The match follows a narrow opening-day defeat at unbeaten divisional leaders Peterborough United and a draw at Southend United. 

“We have played against a lot of the top sides this season already,” said Argyle manager Derek Adams, “and we are going to do that against Walsall, as well, because they are an established League One side. 

“They have done exceptionally well over the years; they’ve kept themselves in League One. 

“They had a really good result last week at home to Bradford, to be 3-0 down and to get back into it to be 3-3

Club News

Special Sarce

31 August 2017

“They have made a solid start to the season, like ourselves. 

“Peterborough was a very good game for us; they’re at the top of the league now, so to play so well there was good. 

“Against Southend, they were the dominant in the first half but we became the dominant team in the second half.” 

The Green Army, who will be travelling in their usual impressive numbers to what is one of Argyle’s nearest away matches this season, will be looking with interest on how the Pilgrims react to the 4-0 home defeat by Scunthorpe United in their last match.

They should have nothing to worry about. Derek said: “The players have already put the Scunthorpe result behind them, as they always do. We are just looking at getting as many points as we can now.” 

Saturday's game goes ahead despite Walsall being without five players who are away on international duty, manager Jon Whitney opting to build on a three-game unbeaten run, rather than ask for the game to be postponed. 

Ireland trio Shaun Donnellan, Liam Kinsella and Callum Cockerill-Mollett are away, as are Tyler Roberts, of Wales, and Maz Kouyhjar, of Afghanistan. 

West Bromwich Albion loan players Donnellan and Roberts are the Saddlers’ main misses. Defender Donnellan has started the three unbeaten games, while Roberts scored their second goal in the draw with Bradford after coming on as a substitute.

Argyle are missing key players in the shape of midfielder Antoni Sarcevic, who is suspended for three games after being sent off against Scunthorpe, and injured pair Ryan Taylor and Oscar Threlkeld. 

Derek said: “Ryan Taylor will be back mid to end of October and Oscar Threlkeld will be back mid to end of September. They are both progressing as expected.”

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Match Reports

Walsall 2 Argyle 1 - Report

Argyle Saddle Sore After Defeat at Banks's Stadium

2 September 2017

Walsall 2
Agyei 23, Oztumer 81 

Argyle 1
Carey pen 87 

IT was a case of déjà vu all over again as Argyle suffered another Sky Bet League One setback despite enjoying a share of the game large enough, and containing much that was admirable, to have merited better.

A debut goal from on-loan Burnley forward Daniel Agyei, Walsall’s deadline-day transfer signing, and a late strike by diminutive midfielder Erhun Oztumer gave the home side a grafted 2-0 lead which was slashed in half by a penalty from Graham Carey that was the least Argyle deserved from a match which saw the balance of power shift several times. 

The Pilgrims, now with one win and one draw from their opening five matches of the 2016-17, were splendid until Agyei pounced midway through the first half. 

After that, they lost their way a little, but, assisted by manager Derek Adams’ acute tactical awareness, again enjoyed a period of ascendency until late on, when Walsall took advantage of their opponents’ pressing to add a late second that rubbed salt into wounds that not even Carey’s even later spot-kick could salve. 

The Pilgrims had showed one, enforced, change from the side that started the previous week’s 4-0 home defeat by Scunthorpe United. 

Antoni Sarcevic’s first-half dismissal for violent conduct which had played a part in the heaviness of that loss saw him begin a three-match suspension, allowing Joel Grant to be recalled. 

Walsall were also obliged to tweak their initial 11 from the team that had come from 3-0 down at home to Bradford City seven days earlier to draw 3-3, with West Brom’s on-loan Irish centre-back Shaun Donnellan on international duty. Kory Roberts took his place in a three-man defence. 

Grant was soon in the thick of things as Argyle began, yet again, with real purpose. Manager Derek Adams had talked before the game about his Jamaican international being a potential goal-threat and only a lunging block by Nicky Devlin prevented him from straightaway living up to the billing. 

The Pilgrims were not backward in going forward early on and their attacking intent had Walsall scrambling to hold a line; the home side conceded five corners in the opening ten minutes as Argyle dominated them.

The more they pressed, the more they left themselves vulnerable to the sort of break from which Scunthorpe had crafted their opener the previous week and a couple of home-side raids needed dealing with. Hearts were in mouth’s when Gary Miller’s block to thwart the lively Amadou Bakayaro wrong-footed Luke McCormick, but the ball lollopped wide of the goal. 

Walsall were more on the defence, than offense, though, and a Pilgrims’ breakthrough seemed in the offing. It nearly arrived when the pivotal Carey picked up the ball 20 yards from goal, but his shot was wide.

When the opening goal came, it was, therefore, against the run of play and came from nowhere. Argyle had everyone behind the ball as Walsall probed for an opening which they found possibly a little too easily and Agyei had no problem heading home Luke Leahy’s left-wing cross, close in, centre of goal. 

Although the Pilgrims had a chance to reclaim parity when Carey’s free-kick picked out Sonny Bradley for a header that did not trouble goalkeeper Mark Gillespie, the goal signified a huge momentum-shift. 

For ten minutes, Argyle were second-best in the middle third, outnumbered and unmatched. This following their impressive opening spell. Adams did not wait until half-time to remedy the imbalance, sending on Yann Songo’o as substitute for the unlucky Grant and rearranging his side’s formation to match Walsall’s five-man midfield.

The switch immediately had the desired effect and Argyle again played with potency. Gary Sawyer was unfortunate not to win a penalty when referee Robert Jones declined to view raised red hands as illegal, and Jamie Ness, arriving late, fired a shot just wide.

Adams honed his reformed side further at the interval, bringing on one Black Countryman, Nathan Blissett, for another, Jake Jervis, on home territory, pairing him with Nadir Ciftci up front. 

The shape-shift further shifted the emphasis of the ebb-and-flow game towards the Pilgrims and they took their corner-count into double-figures within five minutes of the re-start, but without troubling Gillespie unduly. 

Ciftci seemed to benefit from having Blissett’s not inconsiderable presence alongside him and the Turkish striker played in Ness for another shot from long range which this time obliged the Walsall goalkeeper to make a save. 

Again, though, Walsall weathered the storm, soaked up the pressure, and appeared to have put the game beyond doubt when Oztumer fired home in the 81st minute. 

There was still time for one more swing of the pendulum, however, when Blissett was fouled by Jon Guthrie to win a penalty that Carey smashed into the roof of the net to open his account for the season.

Walsall (3-5-2): 1 Mark Gillespie; 14 James Wilson, 24 Kory Roberts, 5 Jon Guthrie; 6 Nicky Devlin, 7 Adam Chambers (capt), 10 Erhun Oztumer, 2 Joe Edwards, 3 Luke Leahy; 20 Amadou Bakayoko (11 Kieron Morris 75), 32 Daniel Agyei (9 Simeon Jackson 62). Substitutes (not used): 8 Florent Cuvelier, 13 Liam Roberts (gk), 17 Reece Flanagan, 19 Zeli Ismail, 36 Mitch Candlin.

Booked: Wilson 70.

Argyle (4-2-3-1): 23 Luke McCormick (capt); 2 Gary Miller, 5 Ryan Edwards, 15 Sonny Bradley, 3 Gary Sawyer; 24 David Fox (11 Ruben Lameiras 74), 6 Jamie Ness; 14 Jake Jervis (13 Nathan Blissett half-time), 10 Graham Carey, 16 Joel Grant (4 Yann Songo’o 38); 9 Nadir Ciftci. Substitutes (not used): 1 Robbert te Loeke (gk), 8 Lionel Ainsworth, 17 Aaron Taylor-Sinclair, 21 Gregg Wylde.

Booked: Carey 82. 

Referee: Robert Jones. 

Attendance: 5,495 (1,525 away).

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Ticket News

Walsall Pay on the Day

Extra Option for Green Army Heading to Banks's Stadium

1 September 2017

WALSALL have confirmed to us that the Green Army will be able to pay on the day to watch Saturday's game at Banks's Stadium.

Details of the pay on the day facilities can be found below. You can still purchase from Argyle on Friday, via the Ticket Office or eticketing.co.uk/pafc

Ticket News

Walsall Ticket Information

24 August 2017

Pay on the Day
Through turnstiles 1 & 2
Adults - £24
Over 60s - £18
Under 18s - £16
Family Ticket - £26 (One adult, One Under 18)
The family ticket is only available from the ticket office at Walsall.

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