Ones to watch as Sheffield Wednesday battle familiar face, Caolan Lavery, in Carabao Cup
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Caolan Lavery was a key performer for Walsall last season, scoring 10 and assisting seven in all competitions for the Saddlers, as he finished top of the charts in terms of total goal contributions (17) and second only to Josh Gordon (12) with regards to goals scored.
Lavery, now 27, left the Owls back in 2016 for city rivals, Sheffield United, but has also spent time with Rotherham United and Bury before finding his feet with Walsall ahead of the 2019/20 season.
So the Northern Ireland youth international is no stranger for the likes of Liam Palmer and Tom Lees, both of whom played alongside him during his time at Hillsborough a few years ago.
Lavery won’t be the only player who could cause the Owls problems though, with last season’s top scorer, Gordon, scoring in last week’s 1-1 draw with Burton Albion, and the likes of Elijah Adebayo, Wes McDonald and Rory Holden having heavily contributed up front for Walsall in the 2019/20 campaign.
Speaking to the club’s website ahead of the Carabao Cup encounter on Saturday, Saddlers boss, Darrell Clarke, said, “I think the lads have a better understanding of playing together but there are still always going to be areas that we need to improve on.
“We’ve worked very hard on the counter attack and we didn’t quite look after that transition of the final ball, final shot at times because we pressed really well first half and had opportunities to punish them a little bit more so hopefully we’ll be able to tidy that up but in general I was pleased.
“It doesn’t look like we picked up any injuries which is important but we’ll start back training this week.”
The Owls, likewise, are thought to have pretty much a clean bill of health following their preseason camp in Loughborough, and Garry Monk will be desperate for their 2020/21 campaign to get off to a winning start in the West Midlands.