September 22, 2012
Saddlers unseat Lilywhites
Walsall's young side came from behind to beat Preston 3-1 with a superb performance at the Banks's Stadium.
Striker George Bowerman, 21, was the star with two goals, one from the penalty spot, as the Saddlers climbed above North End in the League One table.
Preston took the lead in the 10th minute when Walsall lost possession in midfield and were opened up by a swift counter-attack. Nicky Wroe crossed to the unmarked Joel Byrom who headed past debutant goalkeeper Karl Darlow, on loan from Nottingham Forest.
After 18 minutes Darlow pulled off a brilliant save, tipping over a fierce header from Stuart Beavon who looked a certain scorer from close range.
Walsall then took control. Will Grigg had a shot blocked and Florent Cuvelier saw his deflected free-kick superbly saved by Steve Simonsen before the hosts equalised seven minutes before half-time when Grigg's knock back was chipped over the Preston keeper by the hard-working James Baxendale.
The Saddlers dominated the second half. Bowerman put them ahead with a 55th minute penalty after he had been tripped by Shane Cansdell-Sherriff, and he drove in the third with a cracking left-foot shot to clinch the points after 58 minutes.
|Walsall||Preston North End|
|27 Karl Darlow||23 Steve Simonsen|
|5 Dean Holden||6 Shane Cansdell-Sherriff|
|4 Andy Butler||4 Paul Huntington|
|14 Ben Purkiss||21 John Mousinho|
|26 Andy Taylor||3 Scott Laird|
|6 Nicky Featherstone||26 Bailey Wright|
|8 Florent Cuvelier||19 John Welsh|
|24 James Baxendale||8 Nicky Wroe|
|10 Jamie Paterson||13 Joel Byrom|
|9 William Grigg||24 William Hayhurst|
|17 George Bowerman||29 Stuart Beavon|
|1 David Grof||Thorsten Stuckmann 1|
|2 Richard Taundry||David Buchanan 16|
|22 Paul Downing||Chris Robertson 5|
|11 Ashley Hemmings||Jeffrey Monakana 17|
|16 Jake Jones||Jack King 22|
|12 Febian Brandy||Akpo Sodje 12|
|15 Connor Taylor||David Amoo 7|
|Richard Taundry for James Baxendale (86)||Akpo Sodje for William Hayhurst (35)|
|Jake Jones for Jamie Paterson (89)||Jeffrey Monakana for Paul Huntington (46)|
|Paul Downing for William Grigg (90)||David Amoo for John Mousinho (81)|
|Joel Byrom (16)|
|· Squads: Walsall | Preston North End|