W 2-1 vs Stockport County (H) - League Two, Sat 12th August, 3:00pm

Walsall’s first home game of the season comes against much-fancied Stockport County.

The Opposition

Beaten play-off finalists and arguably the best opposition we saw at the Bezla last season, Stockport will have ambitions for automatic promotion this time around.

They’ve retained much of their core squad and added what would appear to be leading quality for the division in the form of Nick Powell and Louie Barry. Their season has started with a 1-0 loss at home to Gillingham and pelanty defeat in the League Cup following a score draw at Sheffield Wednesday.

The Proposition

A first home game of the season and an opportunity to impress against a team expected to finish top seven. There were positives and negatives to take from the midweek defeat at Blackburn, with Foulkes and Tierney both staking a claim for a starting place. Freddie Draper is available for selection following suspension, injured Priestley Farquason is yet to feature this season.

The First Time

A thumping 4-1 away defeat at in September 1900. The game was played at Green Lane, Stockport’s home for a couple of seasons at the turn of the century before relocating to Edgeley Park.

The Worst Time

Though our 50 competitive games against Stockport have tended to be close-run affairs, a 5-0 away loss on Boxing Day 1932 stands out as the largest margin of defeat. Just weeks later, Walsall would defeat Herbert Chapman’s Arsenal in the greatest giant-killing feat in the history of the FA Cup.

The Last Time

January 8th 2023. A stoppage-time pelanty from Andy Williams secured a late away win and a place in the FA Cup 4th Round. A home tie against Premier League Leicester was the prize, but Walsall wouldn’t win again until March 18th.

Played For Both

A product of the renowned Wallsend Boys Club, Tony Dinning began his professional career at Stockport where he played more than 200 games over a six season period, four of those in the second tier.

He joined Wolves in 2000 for £750,000 but could bare just a single season before moving to Wigan, who he would captain to the Division 2 title in 02/03 in a team featuring Mike Flynn. It was from the Latics that he would spend an uneventful loan at Walsall in the second half of the following season, making seven appearances as he linked up with former-manager Colin Lee.

A dominant midfielder, Dinning would play League football until his mid-thirties (including a second stint at Stockport) before dropping down the pyramid, finishing his playing career in 2011 following spells at Hednesford, Stafford and Bridgnorth Town.

Also: Tom Bennett, Brett Angell, Aaron Lescott, Jabo Ibehre, Joe Edwards, Mat Sadler…

Lump On

Walsall have a fine head-to-head record against Stockport since 2000: P13/W9/D2/L2

Lump Off

Walsall have won two competitive games since beating Stockport in January…

Vaguely Interesting Fact

We’ve lost our opening home League game just once in the past ten seasons. (W6/D3/L1)

UTS Match Poll

  • Walsall Win
  • Draw
  • Stockport Win

0 voters


Very well presented match thread mate. Top work.
Im going for a score draw a Desmond. Looking forward to being back at the Bescot should be a good attendance 6k plus


Forest Green under Taylor?

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That’s the one.

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Loss for me.
I don’t think our awful defence who will be low confidence already will handle there on paper amazing attack
3-1 Stockport

And Alf Dolphin of course.

Sorry to be a pedant but Stockport is in Cheshire, as well as being historically a county borough in its own right (hence the name of the football club). Bits of it were originally in Lancashire but that was a long time ago, and didn’t include the bit where the football club is.
Of course its also in “Greater Manchester” and simultaneously on geographical rather than in metropolitan “Merseyside”.


4-0 Walsall.

DJ, Oteh, Foulkes, DJT

Lets face it, its the only result possible.

6893 att.

Got a really good feeling about this one, Stockport are a high quality side of that there is no doubt but I think this is the perfect time to play them, given their opening result they may well be suffering a hangover from last seasons play-off heartache. A couple of sensible changes from the Morecambe game in the light of impressive performances from the likes of Foulkes and Comley and also with Freddie Draper to give their defence nightmares. Looks like it will be a bumper audience too, well in excess of 6,000 with another impressive looking travelling gate from Stockport. Atmosphere should be electric.

It’s the perfect time to play them but without a shadow of doubt they have a formidable team.
First home game of the season, bumper crowd we have to be at them from the off.
I’d love to say a win for us but I think it’s probably a draw.

Owen, DD and DJ are automatic write-ins for the starting XI. But based on what we’ve seen in the first 2 games, I think there is a real debate about the other 8.

Presuming MS starts with the default 5-something-2, Riley or Foulkes at RWB (or Knowles if he’s fit in time)?

Gordon or Allen at RWB?

2 out of Hussey, McEntee, Williams - and even Allen (plus Farky if fit)?

1 DCM or 2? Choice of Stirk, Comley and Riley.

Has Hutch done enough so far to grab another start? Tierney looked decent supporting a lone striker - replace Hutch, or play alongside? Maher is knocking on the door but probably still only a bench player at the moment.

Oteh or DJT as the second striker? Guessing Draper won’t start but could be a used sub. Does Matt even make the bench?

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If I were Matt, i’d be worried. Barely got 5 minutes against Morecambe and none last night. Came with a reputation for our level, which for one reason or another he hasn’t lived upto. Shame really as he looked really good the year Forest Green won the league.


I can’t see us winning this one. I’d take a score draw now.

3-1 walsall a brace for DJ and one from Daniels.

I think we’ll win this one. Hopefully Foulkes starts at RWB and Maher comes on as sub. I’d love us to keep a clean sheet as I think the defence has been rubbish so far this season - but I doubt it! 3-2 Walsall.

I think that there are goals in this squad (even apart from DJ) - the question is over the defence though. In particular, should it be 3+2 or 4? And which personnel give us the best chance of stopping the opposition scoring while also allowing us to get on the front foot?

If we try a 4 (like a lot of people have been asking for) then DD + 1 of Hussey (not as quick as Monthe and looks a bit vulnerable, but has good delivery and likes to get forward to support our attacks), McEntee (still young and relatively untested both as a CB and in that formation), Williams (even more raw than McEntee but had a steady debut), Farky (when fit), or possibly even Allen (MS pleased with him as part of a 3 during pre-season). Which combination gives you the most confidence?

I like hussy got a good footballing brain , good feet and passing ability. I do think however he could be the root cause for us conceading a few goals this season with his lack of pace .
Was just thinking could he do a job in centre mid ? which would allow us to get a bit more control in there .


Gordon is as automatic choice as anyone at this point, especially with his competition. Obviously Evans, Daniels and Johnson. As for the other 6 … :man_shrugging:

Tierney should start, don’t think he will. Hussey will probably start, as will McEntee, I’m not sure they should (not in midfield anyway). Riley or Foulkes is much of a muchness at RWB in a very good way, I rate them both. Hutchinson will play, that leaves one more spot that is probably Oteh’s.


Williams (Farq if fit)




Would be my guess, but it wouldn’t be my 11.

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Hasn’t got the legs for Centre back … so stick him in midfield :thinking:

Whatever the debate is regarding OM best position ie cb or dm doesn’t matter as Sadler obviously likes him no matter what after listening to his praise of him post Blackburn.