Smith heaps praise on Hemmings

Smith: Hemmings showed class

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Walsall manager Dean Smith praised winger Ashley Hemmings after his goal earned his side a 1-0 Capital One Cup win over Brentford.

Released by neighbours Wolves, Hemmings lashed home a fine left-footed shot after Will Grigg's drive had been blocked by Brentford skipper Kevin O'Connor.

That proved to be the only goal, while the Bees' Jake Reeves was shown a straight red card in the 25th minute for his foul on Adam Chambers.

Smith, who included four new men in his starting line-up, said: "It was a really good finish and that's why we brought Ashley in. We know he can score and create chances as well. He is a bag of tricks.

"I thought we were excellent in the first half, played some really good stuff and deservedly took the lead. They [Brentford] changed their shape in the second half and that caused us a few problems.

"It was a typical first game of the season, with both teams tiring in the second half and we got a bit loose on the ball, but we created enough chances. I was a bit concerned with the chances they created, though. We could have scored a second, but Brentford gave it a go in the second half."