HomeFeaturedLocal SportVale Earn Credible Draw Against League Leaders

Vale Earn Credible Draw Against League Leaders

When the League leaders come into town it provides a litmus test for your own promotion credentials. Port Vale certainly rose to the challenge and outplayed Forest Green Rovers in the first period of the game.

A combination of crisp passing, pressing and powerful forward play saw the home side on top at the break. They were unlucky to only have a slender lead provided by Ryan Edmondson having been denied a greater advantage through a fine performance from visiting keeper Luke McGee.

The visitors turned the tables in the second half and showed why many pundits have them as one of the favourites for promotion. A stout rearguard action seemed to have done enough to earn a valuable three points for the Vale but a late goal from Matthew Stevens dented the home side’s hopes and ensured that the spoils were shared.

An early counter attack saw Edmondson cut in from the left to unleash a fierce drive that was kept out by a top class save from McGee. David Worrall then had an effort charged down at the expense of a corner before the home side deservedly took the lead in the twelfth minute.

Rovers were forced to concede a corner when a low cross from Chris Hussey caused problems for the visiting defence and the lead was snatched from the flag kick. Hussey used the swirling conditions to his advantage to deliver a vicious inswinger and this provided the simplest of chances for Edmondson to hit home at the far post.

McGee was forced to pull out his second super save of the evening when he dived to his left to claw away an effort from Wilson and Vale almost notched their second when FGR struggled to deal with another Hussey corner. Unfortunately, Aaron Martin was only able to poke the loose ball over the bar.

Rovers came out for the second half in determined mood and quickly forced two corners. Tomas Holy denied Stevens at his near post and Jamille Matt headed powerfully over in a good spell for the visitors with Ebou Adams unsuccessful in his claims for a penalty when going down under pressure.

The screw was gradually being turned by the visitors. As the corner count mounted but the home defence stood firm with the visitors denied any clear chances.

The Valiants seemed to weather the storm and were happy for the game to become a midfield stalemate. A rare attacking moment saw sub Kian Harratt released but he could only deliver a tame shot that was easily pouched by the keeper.

But the tide of the game had turned and, to the home supporters’ dismay , the earlier work was all undone ten minutes from time. II was another corner that provided the equaliser. Martin was forced to put the ball behind and the ball was worked to Stevens who was stunned the vocal crowd into silence from close range.

Vale’s supporters left the ground deflated at not managing to hold on to their early lead but when they are able to reflect in a more sober fashion they will realise that this was a good game to watch with both sides deserving something from the game for their efforts

Dave Stringer
Dave Stringer
Sports Reporter and Theatre Critic

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