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Page last updated at 10:01 GMT, Monday, 2 March 2009

Hutchings delighted for Nicholls

Alex Nicholls
Nicholls headed home Walsall's second in the 2-0 win over Yeovil

Walsall forward Alex Nicholls has earned plaudits from his manager Chris Hutchings after scoring the second goal in the 2-0 win over Yeovil.

Nicholls is playing wide on the right, which is not his favoured position, and that has impressed the new boss.

"Well yeah, we know he's a striker, but he's got a shirt and he's doing a job for the team," Hutchings told BBC WM.

"Individuals have got to sacrifice themselves at times - I was really delighted for him."

Nicholls was far from the only player buying into the team ethic during the win over Yeovil.

We've had some good set plays - we haven't got on the end of them. It's something we need to work on

Walsall boss Chris Hutchings

Former England striker Michael Ricketts dropped back to play in the centre of defence when Anthony Gerrard tweaked his hamstring, and went on to help his side to a clean sheet.

"We had no-one else to play there, it's as simple as that," noted Hutchings.

"As I say it's not about individuals, it's about the team, and if they've got to do a job for 90 minutes or 30 minutes or whatever then we expect them to do it.

"He was quite happy to do the job for us and we came through with a clean sheet."

The Saddlers' recent form has seen them close to within eight points of the play-off places in League One with 13 games still to play.

Hutchings is still keen to target a sixth-placed finish, and feels the one thing they really need to improve is the goal-scoring record outside the strikers.

"Obviously you want everybody to contribute," said the former Bradford and Wigan boss.

"You see teams that are promoted, and it's not just their strikers and wide men, midfielders contribute, centre-backs contribute.

"We've had some good set plays, we haven't got on the end of them. It's something we need to work on and hopefully one or two will go our way."

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see also
Walsall 2-0 Yeovil
28 Feb 09 |  League One
Hutchings thrilled with away win
23 Feb 09 |  Football
Forward options please Hutchings
23 Feb 09 |  Walsall

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