The Saddlers moved six points clear of the relegation zone with a hard-earned draw at fifth-bottom Oldham.

Oldham manager Richie Wellens named Anthony Gerrard back in his starting 11 for the game, whilst there was also a start for Nazon who started his first game since Bury.

But it was Dean Keates’ men started on the front foot and could have taken the lead inside five minutes.

The recalled George Dobson jinked his way into the box before teeing up Julien Ngoy but his side-footed effort was too close to Latics keeper Johny Placide.

Latics then threatened at the other end, as Nazon attempted a spectacular overhead kick from just inside the box, but the ball landed on the roof of the net.

Oldham had a couple of other half chances, but they couldn’t find the net and Walsall made them pay when they took the lead on 34 minutes (0-1).

Luke Leahy’s powerful header from Kieron Morris’ corner was turned onto the bar by Placide, with Jack Fitzwater reacting quickest to volley home the loose ball.

But Walsall’s lead lasted barely 11 minutes as Oldham levelled through the lively Nazon.

Nazon picked up the ball on the left, danced his way into the penalty area and fired into the bottom corner to draw Latics level at the break (1-1).

Half Time – Oldham Athletic (Nazon 45′) 1-1 Walsall (Fitzwater 34′)

It was a bright opening to the second half from Latics who created a number of chances to take the lead.

Oldham’s deflected shot looked to be heading for goal, but somehow Liam Roberts was able to superbly claw away the ball on the line and prevent the home side from scoring.

Athletic did all the pressing and again almost found themselves ahead on the hour mark.

Nazon swivelled on the edge of the box and unleashed a thunderous effort but Liam Roberts somehow managed to tip the ball around the post.

Both sides made changes as Wellens introduced Aaron Holloway and Tope Obadeyi into the action as they looked for a way back into the game.

Oldham continued to do most of the pressing, Eoin Doyle turning smartly in the box before shooting straight at a grateful Roberts.

The visitors offered little in the second half but could have retaken the lead late on when Placide made a smart stop to tip over Jon Guthrie’s header from George Dobson’s free-kick.

Oldham thought they won it late on from a corner but it wasn’t to be as the ball was somehow cleared off the line, with the game finishing 1-1.

Full Time – Oldham Athletic (Nazon 45′) 1-1 Walsall (Fitzwater 34′)

Oldham Athletic – Placide, Moimbe, Gerrard, Edmundson, Hunt, Fane, Gardner, Byrne (90’), McEleney (75’), Nazon (69’), Doyle.

Subs – De La Paz, Hamer, Nepomuceno, Pringle, Obadeyi (75′), Holloway (69′), Davies (90′)

Walsall – Roberts, Leahy, Dobson, Guthrie, Devlin, Chambers, Morris, Kinsella, Ngoy (68’), Bakayoko, Fitzwater.

Subs – Gillespie, Cuvelier, Oztumer, Flanagan, Roberts, Kouhyar, Shaibu (68′).

Attendance: 3,424 (237 visiting supporters)

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