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Hughes: "We won our battles."

17 August 2013

Striker speaks to Valiant Player after win

Port Vale man-of-the-match Lee Hughes praised Vale for winning their battles across the pitch after his goal and assist helped Vale secure a 2-1 win over Bradford City and their first win in the SkyBet League 1.

Hughes scored Vale’s opening goal with a neat finish five minutes before half-time after rounding the goalkeeper.

Bradford striker Nahki Wells then levelled the match from close range on the hour-mark.

Captain Doug Loft sealed the points for the Valiants with a powerful drive six minutes later, with the assist coming courtesy Hughes.

The striker told Valiant Player: “It was always going to be a tough game, we knew they are going to be up there near the end of the season and they are a strong team but we knew we had to work hard and win our battles, and we did.

“They are a physical team and we had to match them, I think it showed out there, the fans knew they were in for a good game.

“I’m pleased with the all-round performance of myself and the team, everyone was working their socks off for each other and that’s what we need to do.”

Hughes was involved in an altercation with Bradford City defender Rory McArdle and Hughes is certain the incident stirred the team into action.

“I think it gave the team a lift, I mean you’ve seen the fans they’ve got behind it.

“There wasn’t anything about it, it was just a bit of banter, and if it gives the team a lift that’s the way it has to be.

“It shows that you are passionate and you want to win the game,” he told Valiant Player afterward.

Hughes believes Vale’s first win of the season has come at the perfect time and will hopefully spur them onto win in the coming weeks.

“You don’t want to lose the first three or four games, it’s a massive win, hopefully it’ll give us a lift to go on and win a few more.”

37-year-old Hughes was starting his first match of the season after beginning the previous matches on the bench and the striker is happy with his contribution.

The striker left the field to a standing ovation from the Vale crowd.

“We’ve got so many strikers, good quality strikers to pick from so it keeps you on your toes.

“You never know, Tomlin was unlucky not to start today, he’s (Micky Adams) given me the chance and I’ve scored one and set the next one up to Lofty.

“Any one of us could have started today, I was lucky enough to start and I scored.”

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