Walsall "What Ifs?" #1: Adam Chambers

There may be mileage in a series of threads here, if this scenario takes off. Let’s tweak a little bit of WFC history, and see what we think the knock-on effects might have been…

In your own mind’s eye…. Might the 2018/19 season have panned out differently, had Adam Chambers not hobbled off at half time in the opening game, abruptly ending his League career? Given that we were ultimately relegated by 3 points, what effect might one final full season from Chambers have had on our fortunes, and current place in the pyramid?

Perhaps not being captain may have lessened the pressure on George Dobson?

Would the signing of Russell Martin still have happened? Was it purely an intended defensive “improvement”, or was Keates also looking for more on-field experience and leadership, in Chambers’ absence?

How would the tenured and respective Chambers’ presence around the dressing room, pitch, and training ground have impacted the… erm… alleged attitudes and behaviour of some of the squad?

Would Liam Kinsella still be a WFC player, or might he have been released the following summer, with opportunities that season more limited?

The floor is open…

IMO the signing of Russell Martin was a significant factor in our relegation. The loss of Chambers’ experience may have meant an experienced pro was needed, but Keates playing Martin when it was obvoius to all he didn’t fit cost us too many points.

Regarding Chambers, I am surprised and disappointed the club has done nothing to recognise his service and contribution.


There were many games we lost to lesser teams that we would probably have drawn with Chambers in the side

I thought Chambers was an outstanding servant for the club. Deserved to captain the club to the championship.

That said I thought he was slowing up a bit in 17/18 which isn’t surprising considering he was nearly 38 by then. Him and Dobson as a central combination was a bit too one paced for me, not enough mobility there. The results from January 2018 with him in the team every week were pretty poor let’s remember.

I think around that time the injury to Joe Edwards was just as crucial. A trio of him, Chambers and Ozzy was still a pretty good league 1 standard midfield but it got broken up and replaced by more mediocre options.

Echo what Enniskillen said, hopefully when crowds return the club can get Chambers back and give him a good send off, odd he didn’t get one before although I don’t think he actually retired until recently.


Chambers’ last season with us was pretty average, but he was still one of the better performers. Not sure if that speaks more for his quality or how poor the squad was

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There was a gradual deterioration in Chambers’ happening anyway so I’m not sure it made that much difference.

Unfortunately, I just don’t think Keates was up to it. He signed a lot of attitude which for a month or two worked in our favour but when it started to go wrong, that attitude became poison. Irreversible poison that even the presence of Chambers couldn’t have contained. Keates signed two experienced players in Martin and Jarvis but in the case of the former he added to the problems and the latter kind of signed out after his penalty miss at Blackpool.

The sale of Ginnelly and the weird stigmatisation and ostracism of Kieran Morris also added to the Shitshow.

It became an unholy mess that was irretrievable. Chambers wouldn’t have made any difference in my opinion.

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The sale of Ginnelly was a fatal blow I feel. His numbers weren’t anything special, but he played a key role in the team. I think we all know Leahy was a weak link, his positioning was awful, he always seemed to be too narrow when defending, almost standing on Guthries toes at times. Ginnelly covered that side so well.

The negativity in the camp was as bad as it gets by the end of the season. Accrington away is the most embarrassed I have ever been to be a Walsall fan, I can’t ever remember a team surrender like that, probably the biggest game of the season, and they were plodding round like they would rather be anywhere else. Chambers was more of a lead by example captain, and that lot had no desire to follow any kind of professionalism.

We started to look a bit like a team when Cook got sent off, against Bradford I think ? Gordon played the lone striker so well even if his finishing left a bit to be desired, we were creating chances. Unfortunately we had a tough run of fixtures, and once those fixtures were over, Keates went back to Cook up front and we looked so poor again. I feel a bit sorry for Keates, even if he brought a lot of it on himself.


Does anybody know that Chambers is up to now? I thought he was fantastic for us in regards to breaking up the play. Had he stayed fit we might of just stayed up.

last I saw on companies house he was one of the main directors in the community programme.
He also owns few btls in birmingham

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What are they?

Buy to let houses

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James Chambers set up a business called ‘My Farewell’ when he retired … allowing people to record messages for their family for when they died. Somewhat niche https://www.facebook.com/MyFarewellUKOfficial/

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