Walsall: Shrewsbury old boy Tom Bradshaw out to impress at 'home'

Tom Bradshaw
Tom Bradshaw scored 17 goals in 98 appearances, including two on his debut, in five years at Shrewsbury

Walsall make their first appearance in almost five years without boss Dean Smith at the helm when they go to old rivals Shrewsbury on Tuesday.

Veteran boss John Ward, physio Jon Whitney and goalkeeping coach Neil Cutler take temporary control following Smith's departure to Brentford.

But top scorer Tom Bradshaw hopes to make it a special night as he goes back to his old club for the first time.

"If you score goals past them then they are going to jeer you," he told BBC WM.

Shrewsbury have another one to keep quiet . . .
Milan Lalkovic got the winner here for Walsall when they last triumphed at the Greenhous Meadow back in December 2013, one of his six goals while on loan from Chelsea. He is now up to five already for the campaign.

"But I know a lot of the fans. All my family are from Shrewsbury and I've got a lot of friends and I'm sure the vast majority will be happy to see me," the 23-year-old added.

Bradshaw, who is just one short of 50 career goals, bagged a brace when Walsall drew 2-2 at home to Shrewsbury in last season's FA Cup first round at Bescot. The second of them was a late equaliser to set up a replay at the Meadow, which he then missed through injury.

"It was special playing against them and to get two goals made it even more special," he added. "But I was forced to miss the away fixture through injury and it will be even more special to now go back to the stadium where I played for five years. "

Bradshaw, signed by Walsall in June 2014, should have had this reunion back on the originally scheduled date of 14 November. But it was the still-uncapped striker's first international call-up by Wales that allowed Walsall to ask to have the game called off.

Walsall could move back into the automatic promotion places with victory or if Burton Albion slip up at home to Millwall, and the Saddlers enjoy a four-goal away win against struggling Shrewsbury, they would go top of League One again.

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