Three changes were made from the week before with Captain Craig Morgan, Jussi Jaaskelainen and Will Griggs returning to the starting line-up. That looked to give us the edge with the team hopefully having more going forward, and more experience at the back.
Over the course of the 90 minutes the change would possibly prove to reflect the decision worthiness, especially in the case of goalkeeper Jaaskelainen who showed his years of experience in a commanding goalkeeping display. Something that Richard O’Donnell has yet to fully attain since pulling on a Wigan shirt.
The pivotal point in the match would come late on in the second half as Wigan Athletic were starting to exert their dominance. A Walsall attack saw our defence crumble and Craig Morgan with a last ditch tackle tripped the attacker. Never mind that there was a covering defender or that the ball was about three yards in front of the striker, the official produced a red card and Wigan went down to ten men.
It would make for a tricky final twenty minutes, and for a period of time which Wigan managed to hold on to and get a much deserved point in the end.
It will be a case of what could have been for Wigan. With Jordy Hiwula making way at half time for new loan signing Yanic Wildschut. It would see a period of play where our new Dutch attacker, Michael Jacobs and Will Griggs linked up well to create some real tests for Walsall. If it wasn’t for their goalkeeper Wigan Athletic could have secured all three points.
At the other end it would come down to some last ditch defending and fine goalkeeping to keep the Saddlers out. With those final twenty minutes to go they applied the pressure and looked to open us up more. Donervon Daniels and Leon Barnett had to be on their toes to keep them at bay.
In the end a 0-0 draw was all that either side could get, in what was a fair result to a very evenly balanced game.