Those travelling from Leeds tomorrow night will have a 107 mile journey down the M1 to the 11,300 capacity Banks Stadium in Walsall.

Walsall were founded in 1888, as one of the founding members of Division Two and have spent their entire existence in the lower leagues of English football, never once playing in the top flight.

Currently managed by former Chelsea defender, Chris Hutchings, Walsall have made a good start to their League One campaign, beating Brighton 1-0 away on opening day, and drawing 2-2 with Southend United at the weekend.

After winning the League Two title in 2006/07, Walsall have finished their two League One campaigns so far in mid-table (13th last season).

Head-to-head, Walsall have beaten Leeds just once in the fourteen competitive matches between the sides, which came in this same fixture last season which we lost 1-0. In the reverse fixture at Elland Road last season, Leeds beat Walsall 3-0 with two goals coming from Fabian Delph.

Walsall fanzine, upthesaddlers.com is expecting a tough game tomorrow night and offers the following prediction I’m one of those who think we played well on Saturday prior to the sending off, in that Southend didn’t present any real threat. However, with a weakened midfield, I think we’ll do very well to preserve our undefeated home record against Leeds since their last relegation.”

Personally, I’m not sure what to expect from the match. It all depends on which Leeds United turns up. The one that played Wycombe in the second half will beat Walsall with ease, however the one that faced Wycombe in the first half would struggle to beat my local pub team. One of the major issues is left-back. I don’t rate Hughes in that position and would hope it’s not him that starts. He’s a benchwarmer at best in my opinion, and I’d sooner see Aidy White given a chance to impress.

When Leeds’ passing game came into play at Wycombe we looked like the Champions we’re being touted as. With that in mind, and despite my reservations I think we can grind out a result here and maintain our 100% record so far.

  • West Stand Rebel

    I know we have had a good start and I am pleased with that. If Ken Bates has done anything right it was to appoint Simon Grayson….mind you this is his fourth manager so surely even he can get it right sometimes. What really worries me and seems to have gone on the back-burner is why our Club is being and being allowed to be run in such a underhand way.The football league seem to be toothless and I can’t understand why.Are they scared to take on Mr. Bates again after all they succeeded last time despite the Court case threatened by Bates to get the 15 points back ? The Club let me remind you is owned by a parent company called Leeds City Holdings to which LUFC owed £1.215m to at June 2008. This company in turn is owned by FSF Ltd. That company is registered in The Cayman Islands and is owned by persons unknown.It is not therefore inconceivable that the ultimate owners have interests in other football clubs in the football league.You can see the problem here. If the owners have clubs drawn together in a league or cup match who is to say that the outcome of that fixture has not already been decided in the Cayman Islands. What do others think? And what can be done about it?

  • Grumpy Older Man

    All of us, including me, tend to overcomplicate sometimes. This Walsall game is very simple, we are playing a team that has frustrated us at their place in L1 and is slightly on the decline, can we beat them and show development or will the old issues remain?

    Wonder if WBA are sending a scout!?

    • TSS

      You expecting Beckford to get an hat-trick if that’s the case?

      All seems to have gone quiet on the Beckford front since the season started. I’m still sitting on the fence ’til September the 1st, or he signs a new contract.

      • Grumpy Older Man

        Full page story in yesterday’s Football League Paper saying WBA put in second bid last week, Bates waiting for bidding war to start….I’m still inclined towards believing he will go (and you will take down Beckford watch ;-) ).

        • TSS

          I’ll change it to ‘Showumni watch’ and have a running count of how many times he’s sliced the ball wide.

          • Grumpy Older Man

            Becchio watch, with a count of his runs would be more positive.. ;-)

          • TSS

            There’ll be no optimism left in me if Becks goes.

          • Grumpy Older Man

            Role reversal it is on that one then…

  • Peter Kris

    Let white and grella play.

  • musiclover

    I’d also like to see some competition for the central midfield places, with Kilkenny now available if not fully match fit. Doyle being the manager’s latest recruit and Howson wearing the armband it’s hard to see this happening unless someone picks up a knock.

  • I always look forward to the Walsall game as its only 15 mins down the road, however I hope this time we can finally get a result as they seem to have a bit of an indian sign on us at their place, and without Ricketts to laugh at this year it could be a long night if we don’t turn up.