Matt Taylor was delighted with his new side’s 5-0 demolition of Kidderminster Harriers on Saturday, he told the Express and Star today.
The Saddlers are looking for their first sustained play-off push in their third season since relegation from League One this upcoming campaign, if their frontline can click like it did at the weekend they give themselves the best chance.
Taylor said: “What impressed me more than anything was our ruthlessness in front of goal, we had nine chances and scored five goals.
“I’m really happy, hopefully it allows the players to gain confidence.
“It was the first game since we started pre-season where we’ve dominated possession.”
The pre-season schedule has been testing to this point, the Harriers match provided a bit of respite from Premier League opposition.
Taylor’s men played out respectable defeats with Crystal Palace and Aston Villa prior to last Saturday’s fixture and welcome newly relegated West Bromwich Albion to the Bescot Stadium on Tuesday evening.
Taylor continued: “There’s lots for the players to learn and we’re talking a lot in training about being in the correct positions when building and rotations to create space.”
Taylor had an interim spell in charge of Swindon Town in 2018 but his permanent managerial journey begins with Walsall’s trip to Prenton Park to play 2020/21 play-off semi finalists Tranmere Rovers.
A baptism of fire for the 39-year-old, taking on one of the promotion favourites with his opposite number in the dugout Football League campaigner, Micky Mellon.
New attacking signings Brendan Kiernan, Conor Wilkinson and Kieran Phillips were all on the scoresheet against Kidderminster, a forward line with plenty of variety, capable of causing all kinds of problems at League Two level. Slipping under the radar as a potential surprise package to burst into the top seven is a nice place to be for the Saddlers as Taylor looks to cut his teeth in the hot-seat.
With Manny Monthe and Ash Taylor building solid foundations at the back, a potent frontline should see them comfortably achieve a top ten finish for the first time since relegation to League Two. The jury is out on Taylor’s ability at the level, but do not underestimate the squad at his disposal.