Port Vale (3) 4 Stoke City 0
Port Vale go through to the last 16 of the Checkatrade by humiliating Stoke City’s U21’s with a men-against-boys performance. It revealed how far Stoke’s Acedemy players are from First Team standard. Could this be a springboard for Vale’s future?
Here’s the final score report by Dave Lee & Mike Stubbs:
Here’s how the game panned out in real time:
Yes, “You’ve only come see The Vale” sing the Vale fans at the Stokies. The City U21 side take on almost full-strength Vale. All eyes on strikers Tom Pope & Tyrese Campbell. Experience vs youth, looks vs…no, forget that one.
1.05 Vale’s Hannant tries his hand (well, foot) at shooting. Anywhere on target would have done, Haugaard wasn’t going to move. If this is anything to go by, Peter Coates is going to get a rude awakening as to where all those millions spent on the Academy has gone.
6.01 1-0 to Vale!! Cristian Montano breaks & crosses beautifully from the left for Pope to head home in the corner. Easy. Pope beat his defender like he wasn’t even there! Vale fans throw on a white flare. Bad children!
14.15 Vale have a throw-in their own half…but all the players walk away from it, leaving no one to take the throw! Ref has to whistle someone over to take it. #takingthemick
31.55 Verlinden shows Stoke’s first bit of skill, beating Vassell by the corner flag, only for Vassell to show his skill at pulling him down. Stoke fans start chanting inexplicably for Marc Muniesa.
40.05 Stoke fans ask if they can sing a song for Vale. Unwise move, as…
40.17 2-0 to Vale !! Haugaard can only parry the shot, leaving Mantano to blast home.
42.06 3-0 to Vale, as Vale pass their way through the chronic Stoke defence, with Montano finishing brilliantly. Red flare this time, probably from naughty Stoke fans. Vale stewarding as grim as ever.
44.01 Campbell completely misses the ball from a cross from the left as he tries to flamboyantly flick home. Out of his depth.
45+1 Jarvis’ free kick brings out a save in Scott Brown. Forgot either were here!
Half-time Vale 3 Stoke U21s 0
45.00 Stoke fans reckon they’re “Going to win 4-3”. Stoke missing giant defender Harry Souttar and generally any player with any clout whatsoever. Vale able to keep their shape with ease. Moussa Niakate on for Josh Tymon, an ex-fringe player not fit to continue…or play at this level. Niakate is beaten easily & immediately.
54.15 Inept to the extreme, as a Stoke free kick into the area is easily caught by keeper Brown.
56.59 As Stoke AND Vale fans throw on flares, the corner of the Hamil/Railway disappears in a puff of smoke.
57.40 Campbell has a clear header…straight at the keeper. Worth every penny…not.
58.50 Things so easy for Vale that they bring on Louis Dodds for Montana.
66.05 4-0 to Vale!!! and a thumping finish by Luke Hannant. Stoke’s defence torn to shreds. Vale fans hint helpfully that it’s “Time To Go”. Is this a reference to Stoke fans wanting to go home, or a clearout of the Academy players?
73.27 Stoke hit the side-netting! It’s as good as it gets for Stoke.
79.20 Haugaard actually makes a decent save at the feet of a Vale striker, showing that he’s not totally out of his depth at this level. Attendance: 7,940.
88.50 Man of the match is Luke Hannant, no complaints from anyone there.
90+3 Final score Vale 4 Stoke 0. Vale can be justifiable delighted with this, but Stoke should be looking closely at their Academy after this…