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Exeter City 2-1 Walsall

Exeter City 2
2 - 1
Walsall 1

St James' Park

22/1/11 15:00

Attendance: 4,853

Referee:

Exeter City survived a nervy last few minutes to claim a narrow 2-1 victory over bottom of the table Walsall.

Richard Duffy`s close range finish gave City the lead inside 5 minutes and Daniel Nardiello`s first time shot doubled the lead in the second half.

Nardiello then had a penalty saved before Julian Gray`s late goal set up a tense finish but City held on for their first win of 2011.

Paul Tisdale opted to ditch the 4-3-3 system used last time out against Brentford, reverting back to his favoured 5-3-2 shape. Billy Jones coming back into the side in place of Nardiello.

David Noble`s recent form has seen him playing an increasingly effective role in City`s midfield and in just the fourth minute his clever ball inside the full back to Steve Tully lead to the opening goal.

Tully`s low centre found its way to Duffy who calmly slotted low to the keepers left from close range.

In-form Jamie Cureton had a golden chance to double the lead he was put through on goal by Liam Sercombe but Cureton`s low finish across the keeper flashed the wrong side of the post.

Trying to kill the game off Paul Tisdale threw on forwards Nardiello and John O`Flynn on the hour mark.

A move that paid dividends when Nardiello swept the ball home first time from Noble`s quickly taken free kick to double the Grecians lead with fifteen minutes to go.

Aaron Lescott then tripped O`Flynn in the box leaving Nardiello the chance to put the game beyond doubt from the penalty spot, but his weak effort was saved.

When Julian Gray scrambled the ball home to half the deficit with 5 minutes remaining it looked as though Nardiello`s miss could have been costly but City held on to claim their first victory of 2011.

City: Hamer, Duffy, Taylor, B Jones (O'Flynn), Tully, Golbourne, Dunne, Sercombe, Noble, Logan (Nardiello), Cureton


Writer:Kithson Bain
Date:Sunday January 23 2011
Time: 2:59AM

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League Table

# Team P W D L Pts. GD
C Portsmouth 46 26 9 11 87 39
P Plymouth 46 26 9 11 87 25
P Doncaster 46 25 10 11 85 30
4 Luton 46 20 17 9 77 27
5 Exeter 46 21 8 17 71 19
6 Carlisle 46 18 17 11 71 1
7 Blackpool 46 18 16 12 70 23
8 Colchester 46 19 12 15 69 10
9 Wycombe 46 19 12 15 69 5
10 Stevenage 46 20 7 19 67 4
11 Cambridge 46 19 9 18 66 8
12 Mansfield 46 17 15 14 66 4
13 Accrington 46 17 14 15 65 3
14 Grimsby 46 17 11 18 62 -4
15 Barnet 46 14 15 17 57 -7
16 Notts County 46 16 8 22 56 -22
17 Crewe 46 14 13 19 55 -9
18 Morecambe 46 14 10 22 52 -20
19 Crawley 46 13 12 21 51 -18
20 Yeovil 46 11 17 18 50 -15
21 Cheltenham 46 12 14 20 50 -20
22 Newport 46 12 12 22 48 -22
R Hartlepool 46 11 13 22 46 -21
R Leyton Orient 46 10 6 30 36 -40
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