Walsall Midfielder Speaks On Successful Loan Spell

Walsall midfielder Ronan Maher has admitted he is enjoying his loan spell at National League North strugglers Rushall Olympic.

The 19-year-old has played 20 times across two separate loans for the Midlands-based side, scoring three goals, including two during Saturday’s win over Darlington. He also has six assists during that time. The only blight on his loan so far has been the red card he received while playing against Gloucester City.

He rejoined Olympic in January having had a previous loan spell between August and November. The Irishman had also appeared three times for his parent club before heading to his temporary home. Having also represented his nation for the under-19s, Maher is highly thought of and is expected to go onto better things in the future.

His parent club haven’t faired too badly this season and sit in 10th position in League Two at the moment, only three points from the play-offs. He could potentially return to a League One club, depending on how the run-in to the end of the season plays out.

Speaking to the Express and Star, Maher said:

“I had a brilliant weekend. It was probably the best performance I’ve had in a Rushall shirt. It was a big day for Rushall. We needed to win the game because if we lost then we would’ve been eight points adrift.”

“They were two very good goals but the most important thing was the three points because we feel we’ve got the upper hand. After winning, we’re thinking it’s still possible that we can stay up.”

“Fighting relegation has been an important experience for me personally. There’s more pressure but I relish that and hopefully we can stay up. It’s all about adding experiences to your CV. I’ve nearly had 1,500 minutes in the National League North now, which is a good amount of minutes at senior level football.”

“The highs and the lows will only put me in good stead for the future. Saturday was probably the highest of the highs for Rushall with a big win and two goals. Then the red card last month against Gloucester was the lowest of the lows but those wide variety of experiences will only help me”

Rushall face a tough Easter double-header against play-off chasers Alfreton Town and Boston United as they look to gain enough points to escape relegation this season.

Writer’s View

Loans like this are a prime example of a player kicking on for their ‘second’ club, with Maher currently being taught the game at somewhere with not as much pressure as the Football League and he seems to be thriving as a result.

He will go back to Walsall in six games time a much more rounded and mature player than when he left. With this being his second loan for them this season he will know a lot of the squad as well.

Rushall fills a gap in the team, Walsall gets their man some experience and Maher gets to play consistently, everyone wins in this scenario.

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