Fitness & Availability

There are seemingly no new injury concerns for Argyle to worry about ahead of the visit of Walsall, with the 3 senior professional goalkeepers still out long-term. Jamie Ness is still working his way back to fitness and could feature somewhere in the matchday squad, while Aaron Taylor-Sinclair is still out with a hamstring injury and is likely to make a comeback very early in 2018.

Walsall were boosted by the return of striker Daniel Agyei to their side to face Rotherham, despite losing 2-1. Goalkeeper Liam Roberts also returned to the squad for this game, making the bench having previously spent 4 games out with a thigh injury. The match at Home Park is likely to come too soon for forward Tyler Roberts and midfielder Flo Cuvelier, although another forward in Amadou Bakayoko returns following a 3-match suspension.

 

Predicted Line-Ups

I can’t see Adams making any changes again from the side which is putting together some good form, and he will look for consistency to keep the good results coming. The only possibility I can see barring any late injury concerns is Jervis in for Lameiras, but I don’t think that is going to happen.

Argyle (4-3-3): Matthews; Threlkeld, Edwards, Bradley, Sawyer; Songo’o, Diagouraga, Fox; Carey, Taylor, Lameiras.

If judged fit enough, I expect Liam Roberts to return in goal and Amadou Bakayoko may start despite having missed the last 3 games with a suspension. Unless there is a sudden major shake-up, it is hard to see where Walsall would make many changes and therefore I expect their team to stay similar to how it has looked previously.

Walsall (4-4-2): Roberts; Devlin, Roberts, Guthrie, Leahy; Ismail, Chambers, Edwards, Morris; Oztümer, Bakayoko.

 

Head to Head

History has seen Argyle and The Saddlers clash a total of 65 times. Of those, Argyle have won 32 while Walsall have won 20, with a total of 13 draws.

The first ever game between the two sides came in September of 1927, where Walsall came out as 2-1 victors in front of 13,784 at Fellows Park.

Meanwhile, the latest game also saw a Walsall win with Daniel Agyei and Erhun Oztümer scoring before a late Graham Carey consolation penalty in front of 5,495 at Bescot Stadium.

 

Writer’s View

I think Argyle will have enough about them to see of a streaky Walsall side on New Year’s Day. In good form and starting to get some good performances together, it is important not to let the 94th-minute equaliser from Blackpool get into Argyle’s heads.

At home recently, we have looked like a changed side and seemingly are far more assured defending a lead than we are away from home. I will say 3-1 to Argyle, with Carey, Taylor and Jervis scoring before a Bakayoko consolation goal. It will be a happy New Year for Argyle fans though, I think.

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