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12:08 21st August 2011


A 41st minute goal from Gavin Williams earned Yeovil Town a useful point against Walsall at the Banks's Stadium this afternoon.

The Welshman netted his first goal since returning to Huish Park after Saddlers striker Jon Macken had given the hosts a 19th minute lead with a curling finish into the top corner. In an entertaining affair both sides had chances to take all three points with the Glovers especially indebted to Luke Ayling who saved his side with a brilliant clearance off the line.

Manager Terry Skiverton made three changes to the team that started in the 1-0 defeat against Milton Keynes Dons. Nathan Jones' fractured shoulder kept him out and the assisted manager was replaced by Bondz N'Gala. Alan O'Brien came in for the injured Kerrea Gilbert while upfront Jon Obika started in place of Steve MacLean as the Glovers started with a 4-4-2 formation.

The game sparked into life after just ninety seconds when the Glovers should have been awarded a penalty. Mat Sadler handballed in the penalty box but referee Darren Drysdale waved away the appeals. They had another half shout for a spot kick when Andy Williams, put through byGavin Williams, tangled with a defender as he got his shot away but again no penalty.

In between Kevan Hurst stung Yeovil keeper Jed Steers hands with a low firm shot before a three minute stoppage occurred when the assistant referee pulled a muscle and was replaced by the fourth official.

Although Yeovil forced two corners and Obika fired over Walsall took the lead on 19 minutes through Jon Macken. Claude Gnakpa, impressive all afternoon, broke down the right and squared to Macken and the former Man City striker curled a beauty into the top corner.

Yeovil were still the better side possession wise but Walsall came closest to scoring next with two rebounded clearances testing Steer. Hurst then headed over for the home side but with four minutes before half time Yeovil finally scored. Ed Upson found Ayling on the right; he in turn fed Wotton and his ball into Obika was left by the front man to Gavin Williams to run onto and tuck under the advancing James Walker.

The second half began the same way with the Glovers on the offensive but they had to reshuffle six minutes in when N'Gala limped off and was replaced by Curtis Haynes-Brown.

Walsall then enjoyed their best spell of the match putting Skiverton's men under pressure. A flowing move down the right flank created a chance for Macken to add a second but he was denied by a last ditch clearance off the line from Ayling that smacked off Max Ehmer's face and away for a corner.

Haynes-Brown's long throws were creating problems in the home defence and Gavin Williams' spectacular volley from thirty yards came directly from one of them.

Steer then turned a Richard Taundry shot away for a corner while at the other end, Obika fired way over before he then turned in at the second attempt from substitute Anthony Edgar's saved shot but was ruled out for offside.

Edgar, who had come on for Alan O'Brien, was looking lively again and following another good team move invloving five players, Andy Williams headed straight at Walker.

Rory Fallon came on for Andy Williams up front with fifteen minutes left as the game opened up even further. Walsall sub Alex Nicholls was proving a real thorn in the visiting defence and he had two chances inside a minute to grab a winner with long range efforts but one went wide and Steer held the other.

In the closing stages, Edgar was denied by Walker and another Walsall sub, Ryan Jarvis, volleyed a Sadler cross over from the back post.
    Data provided by Press Association


    For the first 50 years of their existence, England played their home matches all around the country.