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Wally on the key to victory at Walsall

Manager's reaction after important win on the road

12 February 2019

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Wally Downes was delighted with Wimbledon’s overall performance at Walsall tonight after a much-changed side kept alive the club’s League One survival hopes.

The manager made six changes to the side that started against Burton and the decision to freshen things up paid off with a much-deserved victory.

Our manager said: “I’ve been saying to the players all along that it’s a squad game now, it’s not a team game. I thought on Saturday that we were a little bit too open and putting the extra defender in there today blocked up the openings that were happening against Burton. It was important that we were in the game for as long as we could be today. Going in at half-time at 0-0, I was really pleased with the performance, and it gave us something to build on.

“The key to the victory was that we put two sides of a performance together. We’ve played well on occasions with the ball and not defended well. We’ve also defended grittily away from home and not played that great, but tonight there was a consistency in our performance. We created chances going forward and when we had to defend we did that solidly. The important thing was that we played to our shape and we played to instructions. We worked for each other, which was the critical thing. I’ve told the boys that we have to show promotion form now if we want to stay up this season.”

On-loan Birmingham City defender Steve Seddon was Wimbledon’s match-winner at Walsall and his all-action display was no surprise to Wally Downes.

“Steve is terrific, he is a great athlete," added Wally. "He is a player I’ve admired for a while. I’ve known about him for a long time. He scored a couple of goals at Stevenage, but from set plays and it was great to see him get on the score-sheet in free play tonight.”

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