POSH: Walsall will provide a true test

Peterborough United caretaker-manager Grant McCann (right) celebrates the third goal against Oldham with the players. Picture: Joe Dent
Peterborough United caretaker-manager Grant McCann (right) celebrates the third goal against Oldham with the players. Picture: Joe Dent
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Forget the demolition of an out-of-sorts, confidence-free Oldham side, the new-look Posh team will find out where they really stand after hosting second-placed Walsall at the ABAX Stadium on Saturday (September 19).

Central defender Gaby Zakuani was as happy as anyone with the 5-1 scoreline from Boundary Park, but he isn’t getting carried away.

He might if they topple ‘The Saddlers’ though.

“Everything just clicked at Oldham,” Zakuani stated. “And it’s difficult to know why.

“The manager made some brave selections by including players who hadn’t been involved much this season and it paid off for him and us.

“It was a great performance and a great day, but you could tell while playing the game that Oldham didn’t have a lot of confidence.

“That won’t be the case this week as Walsall are flying. It’s going to be a tough test for us, but it’s a game we will fancy winning and if we do we could get on a roll and climb the table quickly.”

Zakuani was among the players to return from the wilderness at Boundary Park, but, unlike Lee Angol and Erhun Oztumer, his exile was self-inflicted.

The centre-back picked up his first red card for six years in the defeat at Burton Albion and a three-game suspension was followed immediately by an international call-up.

He was relieved to get the nod from new manager Grant McCann last weekend and he’s positive that he and Ricardo Santos can snuff out the threat of Walsall top scorer Tom Bradshaw, one of the deadliest marksmen in the division

“Bradshaw has turned into a very dangerous opponent,” Zakuani added. “But I’ve played against him before and I’m confident we can contain him.

“Me and Ricardo played well together last season and I’m sure we will repeat that form when we get a run of games together.

“We played a very attacking style at Oldham and scored five goals, but we also defended well.

“Oldham had a lot of shots on goal, but most of them were from outside the area. Even the goal they scored was from a good finish rather than bad defending

“I’m just glad I got back in the side. I’m not sure what I was thinking when I made the challenge that got me sent off at Burton. I’m blaming the wet conditions!”