Walsall boss Mat Sadler was “gutted” that Rollin Menayese’s story book return had a sour ending in a 1-1 draw with Barrow.

Defender Menayese, recalled from his loan with Vanarama National League side Aldershot by the injury-hit Saddlers on the day of the game, made a swift impact by crashing home Taylor Allen’s inviting corner seven minutes before half-time.

The duo teamed up for the game’s other goal, though, Allen rolling back into his own penalty area with Menayese seemingly not expecting the pass and lunging into onrushing Emile Acquah as he attempted to deal with it.

Dean Campbell made no mistake with his 53rd-minute spot-kick, tucking low to Jackson Smith’s right to level.

“Clearly we are down to the bare bones in that area,” said Sadler.

“To have five centre-halves missing and to still have a back-three playing as well as they are, I can’t see many squads being able to cope with that.

“Rollin had a really steady, solid game. I was gutted for him that it didn’t end up with the headline he would have wanted in winning us the game.

“It was a wrench for him to leave Aldershot because he was having a really good spell with them.

“I could have recalled him earlier as I had no defensive cover in that area, but I wanted him to get games – I just couldn’t wait any longer.”

It was eventful either side of the goals with Walsall’s Mo Faal denied by James Chester’s point-blank block after half an hour.

The on-loan West Brom striker should have made it 2-0 just 40 seconds into the second half, but he fluffed his finish after Josh Gordon had robbed Chester and raced down the right to put it on a plate.

Barrow’s Kian Spence hit the base of the post from a half-cleared corner five minutes before the equaliser.

Rory Feely headed Sam Foley’s deep corner against upright eight minutes from the end as the visitors searched for a winner.

However, Walsall could have nicked it deep into added time, Douglas James-Taylor having a close-range blast deflected wide and then an effort from the corner that followed blocked amid an almighty scramble.

Despite hitting the woodwork twice, Barrow boss Pete Wild was happy with the hard-earned point and dedicated it to the travelling fans who endured traffic troubles en route to the Poundland Bescot Stadium.

“I got a text from the supporters’ trust saying they were going to get here at 8 o’clock,” he said.

“I used that in the pre-match talk, I told the lads the fans would be late and that we had to give them something to travel back home with.

“You can always just look at the last 10 minutes of the game, but it should have been 2-0 (to Walsall) one minute into the second half.

“You have to look at the context of the game as a whole and we had some really good chances. I was really impressed with how we played and any point on the road is a good one.”