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Norwich (a) - League - 21st December 2002

Reports and reaction from the 2002-03 season as Walsall finished 17th in Division 1
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Norwich (a) - League - 21st December 2002

Tue Dec 07, 2004 4:35 pm

By stat man ( on Saturday, December 21, 2002 - 06:27 pm: Edit

Ainsworth sent off after first "touch" of the ball? some type of record...

By SheffieldSaddler ( on Saturday, December 21, 2002 - 06:44 pm: Edit

Yes. Send him back to Wimbledon if that is all he can do. 2 minutes on pitch and he is sent off. I have no time for people like this.
It really p*sses me off.

By andy ( on Saturday, December 21, 2002 - 07:12 pm: Edit

i think he was trying to hard to impress? hes been without first team football for a while. and i think he will be missing out on first team football for a while too.

By hullsaddler ( on Saturday, December 21, 2002 - 07:40 pm: Edit

From listening to the commentary it sounded like the Norwich keeper had an outstanding game preventing us from going in at half time with a healthy lead.The comments about "not regreting our missed chances' obviously came true in 2nd half.Still we will spend xmas day in a lot healthier position than many would have thought at start of season,if not quite as high as some of us hoped from some of our performances.
Has Colin Lee bought Ainsworth a Xmas present yet?
Hopefully a bright boxing day.

By Chris Owen ( on Saturday, December 21, 2002 - 11:16 pm: Edit

It wouldn't surprise me if Ainsworth was on his way after this. What use is a loan signing who can't play? Especially when we are quite capable of winning without him.

Merry Christmas one and all by the way.


By bournemouthsaddler ( on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 12:18 am: Edit

Ainsworth miss timed a tackle. Should have been yellow. Another goal from a near post corner.Will we ever learn. The best team lost again. I am sick of hearing it. We should be chasing play offs,not looking over our shoulders. Sort it out Colin !!!g

By CreweSaddler ( on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 09:57 am: Edit

I was listening to the phone-in programme on BBC Radio Norfolk on the way home, the studio team didn't think Ainsworth's tackle warranted a sending off.

I thought the referee was inconsistent, but think we have only ourselves to blame for missing at least three excellent chances and allowing Mackay to score from a near post corner. We could easily have been three goals up by the time they equalised

I thought Roper and Hay were superb. Sonner worked hard and did well,almost got the equaliser after going past three defenders in the penalty box, let himself down (again) by getting booked for overreacting to a foul by a Norwich player.

Overall a very good performance. No points though.

By Shifnalsaddler ( on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 12:21 pm: Edit

But my mom told me when I called in after the game that WM (presumably) had said it was a deserved red, which is what I thought as well. No complaints about this sending off from me.
Good performance, no points, for such a talented squad we are under performing and need to sort it out.

By jay b coalpool lad ( on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 02:27 pm: Edit

how many frans did walsall take on saturday to norwich?can someone plz tell me

By SaddlerSteve ( on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 02:42 pm: Edit

You what CoalpoolLad?


I doubt anyone went round asking people their names! lol

Anyway Fran is a typical Scots name. You might get a better response if you ask Cags from the Accies!!

By Jorge14 ( on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 03:05 pm: Edit

Sheff, hold your horsesmate. Weren't you one of the people singing "Wild Things" praises 2 weeks ago? You're as inconsitent as the referee was yesterday.

I thought we played pretty well yesterday. It was never a sending off, Holt went down like he'd been shop by a sniper.

By Jorge14 ( on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 03:08 pm: Edit

Coalpool lad, we took about a thousand I think.

And unless he owns a corner shop, Holt went down like he'd been shot.

By SheffieldSaddler ( on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 08:22 pm: Edit

A thousand to Norwich. I am amazed if this is the case, are you sure?
Last Saturday before christmas for a start. And we didnt even manage to take a 1000 to places such as Sheffield United and Burnley.
I would be astonished if we took even 500 neveralone 1000.

By SheffieldSaddler ( on Sunday, December 22, 2002 - 08:25 pm: Edit

Jorge14 - Yes I was singing Ainsworth praises. I think he is an excellent player who can take on a player, cross the ball and score the odd goal.
However, I have no time for players who are on the pitch for 2 minutes and then get sent off.
Just hope he can cope better on Boxing Day as he will get a terrible reception from the Sheffield United fans.

By Tim Wilkes ( on Monday, December 23, 2002 - 11:16 am: Edit

Crowd -it didn't look like 1,000.

Ainsworth - Poor 1st touch, then lunged in to try and win it back. It was a bad foul but Holt's audition for Casualty and the crowds reaction did him no favours. I'd have thought a yellow card and a very harsh warning would have sufficed.

O'Connor- not at his best.

Sonner - very good game, stupid, stupid booking.

Corica-ever since I said he was a 'shoe-in' for player of the season, he's been playing poorly.

We missed a fair few chances in the 1st half, and their MOM was the goalie. Deserved a point at least...hmmm, where have I heard that before?

By Stu ( on Monday, December 23, 2002 - 12:10 pm: Edit

As per usual, good performance, a defensive lapse (or two), lousy finishing and another away defeat.

Where was the marker for their first goal? Where was the man on the near post? And, although their free kick was good, Phil Mulryne implied that Walker could have done more, quoted as saying "I've scored better free kicks. Their keeper gave me a lot of room and made it that bit easier."

Offensively, if your going to fluff chances as simple as Wracks and Bazeleys, then you'll never win a match. Great saves they might have been, but the keeper should never have been allowed to save them. Wrack should belted his into the roof of the net and Bazeley hit his shot back across the goal towards the keeper, rather than slot it into an empty back post. Although its easier said than done, but its still an area we must improve. Norwich didn't have a glut of chances, but did take what came their way.

As for the sending off. Very harsh I thought, he slid in, yes. No malicious intent in the tackle, he didn't lunge in from a height he slid in along the floor. Add to that, Roper made a virtual identical tackle in the right back position not long after and got a yellow card. Then you have to wonder why Easton didn't get a 2nd yellow for his his lunge from behind on Jorge on the edge of the box. Its the inconsistency from the Ref that was most annoying. Very harsh to blame Ainsworth as I didn't warrant it a red card offence.

And the following, 500 tops by the looks of it.

Norwich fans on the train on the way back said they thought it was "daylight robbery" that they'd won.
I do think we need another striker if Driller is going to suffer from a constant stream of injuries. Birch really struggles to make an impact and Makay chewed him up and spat him out during the brief time he was on the pitch (which is to be expected really)

By SheffieldSaddler ( on Monday, December 23, 2002 - 02:16 pm: Edit

Perhaps if we started to play terrible we might win a few more! :o)

By Shifnalsaddler ( on Monday, December 23, 2002 - 07:19 pm: Edit

The sending off was fair, I thought, but I also wondered why Easton didn't get a card for getting Sonner (that's the one I'm thinkimg of Stu, can't remember the Jorge one) from behind.
I wouldn't criticise Bazeley for not scoring, he was charging in at top speed, all you can ask is to get it on target and he did that, hard and low, another good save.
Thought it was a fantastic free kick, best I've seen against us since David Eyres five or six years ago. It was so good I don't think Jimmy could have done much, although I haven't seen it from behind the goal.
Following, 300 I thought, but I'm terrible at estimating, so could have been 4,000 for all I know.
Should have got something, didn't, that's happening too often.

Why will Ainsworth get stick from the blunts, Sheff? What's the connection?

R.I.P. Joe Strummer.

By SheffieldSaddler ( on Monday, December 23, 2002 - 09:44 pm: Edit

Shifnal - I think I mentioned it a bit ago on another thread. According to my mates who are mostly Sheffield United fans, they once had a pretty decent player in the form of Dane Whitehouse. Sheffield lad born and bred who had come through the system at Sheffield United.
When Ainsworth used to play for Port Vale he made a career ending tackle on Whitehouse and he never recovered and as since retired from football.
Thats how I understand it anyway.
Since then Ainsworth as always had what you call a "unwelcome" reception from Blades fans. I think it got that bad that he has required a police escort when coming to Bramall Lane!

By RushallSaddler ( on Monday, December 23, 2002 - 10:16 pm: Edit

Should be interesting then if Ainsworth gets on in the second half on Thursday, anybody got any idea how the ticket sales have been going, I've heard that Sheff Utd have sold their 2,500 ticket allocation, cos Whalley was hoping to break the attendance record, more chance of doing that against the Dingles I think, around 9,000 on Boxing Day is my estimate.

By SheffieldSaddler ( on Monday, December 23, 2002 - 11:06 pm: Edit

I think Sheffield United have sold out as well. I reckon we stand a chance of setting a new attendance record to be honest. Especially with tickets cheaper than normal and Boxing Day fixtures always seems to bring a lot more fans out than normal.

By Sad Saddler ( on Tuesday, December 24, 2002 - 01:10 am: Edit

Cmon Me Babbies &

Rock In Peace Joe Strummer

By Sharky61 ( on Tuesday, December 24, 2002 - 08:25 am: Edit

Bought the missus a half season ticket yesterday and the girl in the shop said Purple upper is sold out for Boxing day, few left on the terrace, and Banks's and sleepy hollow selling well.Merry christmas to you all, hope your all in good voice Boxing day, come on me babbies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

By Stu ( on Tuesday, December 24, 2002 - 10:23 am: Edit

Shifnal, maybe it was Sonner. The one where we got a free kick on the edge of the penalty box nearest to us in the 2nd half. Thats the one I was thinking of anyway.

At least we can be guranteed to see total football from Sheff Utd, with those delicate skillful players such as Wayne Allison and Iffy Onoura(although I haven't seen his name on the scoresheet for a while). Plus that well mannered quite Micheal Brown in the middle!

By Pompey Yellow ( on Tuesday, December 24, 2002 - 03:27 pm: Edit

From a Norwich fan:

I thought we were lucky to get three points on saturday, it was by far the most inept paerformance we've put in at home for over 2 years and yet we won so maybe we're finally getting a bit of luck.

I think you are now finding out what the rest of the division is staring to grasp, that Greeno is the best keeper outside the premiership.

As for Walsall i thought you were better than your league position suggests but that without a striker to stick chances away you are destined to remain in the bottom half. Still easily good enough to stay up tho!

At the back Walsall looked organised and got men behind the ball, going forward at times they looked dangerous at others lost. As for Norwich a magnificent performance by Greeno, a sloppy performance by the back 4 and a creativeless performance from the front 6. To conceed a goal was probably the best thing that could have happened for us. Malky did what Malky does best, getting on the end of corners and Mullers freekick was top draw although Walker gave him a lot of room and seemed to cover the same side of the goal as the wall as in expecting an Easton's left footer! Lack of research perhaps?

You'll play far worse and win and we'll play far better and lose, i canlt argue with the comments further up the board to that effect!

As for away attendance, 450ish which is a bit disappointing and the sooner the club start limiting away allocations to clubs that are never going to sell out the away end the better. The second lowest attendance of the season and 1500 empty seats meant that yet again home fans were turned away for the 16th consecutive game at Carra Rud.

Happy Christmas to all board users and keep hating those Wolves Scum!

On The Ball City

Pompey Yellow

By Shifnalsaddler ( on Tuesday, December 24, 2002 - 07:14 pm: Edit

Thanks for that explanation, Sheffield.
At least I'll understand if the blunts are going mad on thursday.

By jay b coalpool lad ( on Tuesday, December 24, 2002 - 08:35 pm: Edit

there's only one gareth ainsworth

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