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City slump to disappointing defeat

Walsall Wood were the visitors to Westwood Road and they returned home with a well deserved 3 points. Coming into the game off the back of 2 draws and 2 wins there was optimism amongst the City faithful that the unbeaten run could be extended against a team who have been in similar form but right from the kick-off, the opposition looked to be the busier team and were quick to close down in the midfield, thwarting any attempts that City had to build any kind of momentum in the game.

Walsall thought they had taken the lead in the first half from a corner when Kevin Montiero cleverly spun off his marker and found space at the back post to fire in from close range but the referee had already blown up for a foul on City keeper Joe Welch.

As if the game wasn't going badly enough, losing Taylor Parr on 21 minutes after landing awkwardly on his ankle was a real blow. However, Ed Tassel, who had been recalled from Haverhill, came on and did a really good job in difficult circumstances.

It was then Cities' turn to come close after Stefan Broccoli was brought down 25 yards from Goal, Daniel Cotton stepped up and fired narrowly wide from the resulting free kick.

The opening goal came on 40 minutes when Alex Bradley found himself in acres of space in the 18-yard box, his clinical first time volley finding the corner of the net and giving Welch no chance and it wasn't long before he did it again. City lost possession in midfield, and Walsall worked the ball out to the right to get a cross in, and again that man Bradley was in space to tap home, this time from closer range.

It was a killer blow just 4 minutes before half time. City did have an opportunity to pull one back when Broccoli was brought down again, this time on the right side of the box giving Mikey Davies the opportunity to take aim from 20 yards but unfortunately in a replica of Cottton's earlier effort, he just missed the target with the keeper struggling to get anywhere near it.

The shot took a slight deflection and from the resulting corner, Davies swung the ball in and it beat everyone including Ed Tassel who was coming in at the far post, narrowly missing out on his first goal for the club.

City came out with renewed vigour, enjoying some good spells of possession, and they were handed a lifeline on 56 minutes when Walsall Centre back Tyreace Brown was shown a second yellow card for a foul on Stef Broccoli.

The Lilywhites thought that they had pulled one back from the resulting freekick. Daniel Cotton floated the ball in that beat everyone and rebounded back off the post to Richard Black who steered the ball back across the goal for a tap-in for Stan Leech, unfortunately, the City striker was fractionally offside and the goal was chalked off.

That was as close to a goal as we got and despite having the man advantage it was actually Walsall who killed off the game on 69 minutes when Owen Watkins got to the by-line and pulled the ball back to Jai Verma who slotted passed Joe Welch.

Definitely a game to forget for City but the good news is that Taylors injury may not be as bad as first thought and he could well feature next week as we move on to our next trip away to Coleshill Town.

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