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16 January 2021 Venue Banks's Stadium Attendance

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

Walsall vs. Latics

Sky Bet League Two - Matchday 23

15 January 2021

Latics travel to the Bescot Stadium just off the M6 to take on Walsall in Sky Bet League Two (3pm KO).

Last time out, Harry Kewell’s men were unable to improve on their home form and fell to a 3-2 defeat to Mansfield Town at Boundary Park.

The away form has been significantly better, and the lads will be hoping to further extend the unbeaten league run on the road.

Form Guide

Walsall come into this game on the back of a three-game losing streak, with the last of those coming in a 2-0 defeat to Carlisle United in their only game of 2021 so far.

However, prior to the last three outings, Walsall had gone six games without a loss with the last four of that sequence all being victories, including a 3-2 win at Boundary Park.

The Saddlers are three points and five places ahead of Oldham going into the game but Latics know that they will leapfrog their opposition if they can return with maximum points.

Kick off 19:00 (UK)

Visit the Live Match Centre to access form guides, live text commentary and live access to the match on iFollow

The Saddlers’ last six:

  1. Walsall 0-2 Carlisle United
  2. Walsall 1-2 Scunthorpe United
  3. Salford City 2-0 Walsall
  4. Walsall 4-3 Port Vale
  5. Oldham Athletic 2-3 Walsall
  6. Walsall 2-1 Bolton Wanderers

Head-to-Head

Meetings: 61

Latics wins: 23
Walsall wins: 24
Draws: 14

For: 83
Against: 94

This is the second time that Latics have met Walsall this season.

When the sides met at Boundary Park, it was the Saddlers who took all three points in a match with five goals.

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The visitors went in at the break with a single goal lead courtesy of a Josh Gordon penalty kick and matters were made worse not long into the second half, with Latics captain Carl Piergianni scoring an unfortunate own goal.

Kewell’s men did show a spirited fightback and goals from Dylan Fage and Piergianni saw Latics level after 68 minutes.

Unfortunately, it was Walsall who scored the decisive goal at Boundary Park, wrapping the game up in the 73rd minute.

Team News

In terms of selection Head Coach Harry Kewell may have Zak Dearnley unavailable due to injury as they await scan results.

It is expected Brice Ntambwe will return, whilst Bobby Grant has served his suspension but is unlikely to make a return to the side straight away.

Kyle Jameson continues to be part of full training as he increases his fitness to become match ready.

George Blackwood is still a couple of weeks away after a setback in his recovery.

Watch Out For

Latics will have to watch out for Elijah Adebayo.

Elijah Adebayo.jpg

Oldham fans will recall that it was the 23 year-old who scored the winning goal at Boundary Park to earn his side maximum points.

The forward showed good movement and a cool head in his winning strike, two very important attributes for any attacker.

That goal was the third goal in as many games for Adebayo, but he has not found the net since.

In The Dugout

Darrell Clarke is the man in the dugout for the hosts still.

Darrell Clarke.jpg

Clarke took over at the Bescot Stadium in May 2019 and it his third posting in management following spells with Salisbury City and Bristol Rovers.

The 42 year-old’s most notable achievement to date is guiding Bristol Rovers from the Conference to League One with back to back promotions.

As a player, Clarke represented; Mansfield Town, Hartlepool United, Stockport City, Port Vale, Rochdale and Salisbury City.

Stadium

Well known for being that ground everyone passes in the midlands onto an awayday down South, Walsall was a trip Latics missed out on last season due to the curtailment of the campaign.

Walsall Stadium.jpg

Also known as the Banks's Stadium for sponsorship purposes, the Bescot was built in 1989–90, has a capacity of 11,300 and replaced the club's previous ground, Fellows Park, which was located a quarter of a mile away and was the club's home for 94 years.

Match Officials

Referee: Christopher Pollard

Christopher Pollard Referee.jpg

The man in the middle this weekend has taken charge of 14 games so far this season, handing out 58 bookings and six red cards.

This will be his first fixture involving Oldham during two seasons in Sky Bet League Two.

Assistants: Chris Isherwood & Paul Stonier
Fourth Official: David Rock

Sky Bet Odds

Walsall have been favourites for the game at the Bescot stadium and are priced ay 23/20.

Latics are 2/1 to pick up another win on the road whilst 13/5 is the price offered for a draw.

Please gamble responsibly by clicking here. For more information visit: www.begambleaware.org 

How To Follow The Game

Because the game is classed as behind-closed-doors, supporters can tune into a live match stream with commentary available for all subscribers on iFollow Latics, as Roy Butterworth and Michael Brown you through the action.

This match is available as a live stream for the fee of £10 by clicking here.

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In the current environment, there is a greater dependence on match streaming than ever before. 

As a result iFollow generates one of the only revenue streams available to clubs through these financial challenges. 

Piracy - and illegal streaming of matches - does not only carry the risk of potential criminal action, but also has a greater financial impact on clubs while supporters are unable to attend matches. 

The EFL's campaign would like to not only convey the message that piracy is immoral and illegal, but that it is also financially damaging club's across the divisions.

For more information on the campaign and iFollow, click here.

Alternatively, supporters can also follow the game with live updates on the club's official Twitter account: @OfficialOAFC.

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Match Reports

Walsall 1-1 Latics

16 January 2021

Davis Keillor-Dunn’s second-half goal earns Latics a point on the road in West Midlands.

Harry Kewell named seven changes to his side after the mid-week defeat against Mansfield Town with Coventry City loanee Marcel Hilssner being handed his Latics debut.

The first opportunity of note occurred in the 18th minute and it fell to the hosts when Jack Nolan’s free-kick eluded everyone in the box forcing Ian Lawlor to palm the ball back into the crowded area. The ball landed at the feet of Josh Gordon and the forward smashed his effort towards goal, looking destined for the back of the net, the goalkeeper managed to recover and produce a smart save with his legs.

Following that, Wes McDonald picked the ball up inside the Latics half before dribbling and cutting inside from the left-wing to shoot, but he couldn’t direct his attempt on target.

Latics’ best chance in the first-half arose when Danny Rowe tried his luck from around 35-yards from goal, but his powerful strike went over Liam Roberts’ crossbar.

However, Darrell Clarke’s side managed to take the lead just before the interval when a cross in from the right landed to Zak Jules and the defender drilled his attempt goalwards, Harry Clarke cleared the ball off the line, however, the linesman had adjudged the ball to have crossed the line to the frustration of the Latics players.

Shortly after half-time, new boy Hilssner nearly got on the scoresheet in his first game of English football when he took a short corner with Danny Rowe and received the ball back to curl a cross into the area which nearly caught the goalkeeper off guard at the front post, but Roberts managed to collect the ball in time.

The Saddlers came close to doubling their lead when Nolan delivered an in-swinging cross from the right which was met by Gordon inside the area and he succeeded in making contact with the ball to flick goalwards, however, Lawlor produced good footwork to catch the effort.

In the 63rd minute, Kewell made a double change with the introduction of Ben Garrity and Davis Keillor-Dunn which proved to change the game in Latics’ favour.

Once again, Hilssner caused the hosts problems and, this time, the midfielder received the ball around 30-yards from goal and put his foot through it, swerving on its way to goal, but Roberts did just about enough to keep it out before McAleny pounced on the rebound, trying to play it across goal except it was blocked by the defender.

Latics found an equaliser with 75 minutes on the clock through substitute Keillor-Dunn. Rowe’s heavy touch made its way to the midfielder, clean through inside the penalty area, and he kept his cool and slotted past the goalkeeper to give his side the hope of going on and getting all three points.

Walsall nearly responded within a minute when Alfie Bates crossed onto the head of former Oldham defender Mat Sadler’s head, but he couldn’t steer his attempt on target.

With the clock running down, there only looked like one winner with Kewell’s men dominating. The closest his side came to taking all three points happened in added time when the ball was floated over the backline with McAleny racing onto it, but his half-volley flew way over the crossbar.

This point is the first point Latics have picked up at the Bescot Stadium since August 2015 when Jonathan Forte netted a late equaliser in Darren Kelly’s first game in charge.

Walsall XI – Roberts (GK), Jules (Cockerill-Mollett 80’), Sadler ©, Scarr, Kinsella, Gordon (Lavery 80’), Adebayo, Bates, McDonald, Nolan (Osadebe 65’), White.

Subs – Norman, Sinclair, Perry, Wright.

Goals: Jules 45’

Oldham Athletic XI – Lawlor (GK), Clarke, Borthwick-Jackson, Jombati, Rowe, Fage, Ntambwe (Garrity 63’) ©, McAleny, Hilssner (Jameson 83’), McCalmont (Keillor-Dunn 63’), Hamer (Bahamboula 46’).

Subs – Bilboe (GK), Piergianni, Badan.

Goals: Keillor-Dunn 75’

Referee – Christopher Pollard

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