Dean Keates: Walsall need to get back to basics
Walsall need to get back to basics if they are to turn around their disappointing form in League One, boss Dean Keates has declared.
The Saddlers made an impressive start to the 2018/19 campaign but they have now lost four of their last five league matches.
A 2-0 home loss to Charlton saw Walsall beaten at the Banks’s Stadium for the second time in four days after Burton ran out 3-1 winners at the weekend.
And with his team second best in both those games, Keates admits confidence amongst his squad is low.
“There is no point in me papering over the cracks, they are going to be low on confidence - one win in five is not great on the eye,” the boss said.
“We have got to strip it right back. Momentum in football is massive, we were on a good run at the beginning of the season - they were getting pats on their back.
“Now we have to take the rough with the smooth. We had a good start but now the table has balanced out and we are sat mid-table.
“We need to strip it back and get back to basics. First and foremost we need to get out there and put a shift in for the club.”
A Lyle Taylor penalty and a Krystian Bielik goal saw Charlton run out comfortable winners against Keates’ side last night.
Taylor’s spot-kick arrived following George Dobson’s foul on Tarique Fosu and means Walsall have now given away penalties in five of their last six home, league games.
But Keates felt his team should have been awarded a spot-kick of their own when Dobson was fouled by Josh Cullen in the first-half.
Taylor was also offside in the build-up to a corner which led to Bielik’s goal.
“We started okay but we’ve given a penalty away early on and it’s taken the wind out of our sails,” Keates continued.
“You could see a lot of confidence draining out the lads.
“It wasn’t a malicious tackle. George (Dobson) has slipped and they are the type of things that are going for us at the minute.
“For their second goal, we can strip it back and say he (Taylor) is offside, which he is because I’ve seen it again.
“And we should have had a penalty in the first-half. Anywhere else on the pitch he is going to to give it.
“Bits and pieces aren’t going for us at the minute.”