Boss more than happy with the performance against Gillingham
Micky Adams was understandably full of praise for his players after Vale came from behind to beat Gillingham more convincingly than the scoreline suggests.
He asked his players to get further up the pitch for the second forty five minutes. They just that and it soon paid dividends.
The Vale boss said: “I thought we were excellent today and we thoroughly deserved the win. I was disappointed to concede an early goal, but we showed great character after that and put in a tremendous performance.
“”We were toying with the idea whether we should leave Jordan Hugill on the bench or start with him but we decided to go with him again and he didn’t disgrace himself.
“He showed a little bit of potential there but I felt towards the end of the first half he was feeling the pace so we put Popey on and he scored the winner.
“He had a fantastic away performance but at home it is slightly different because the onus and emphasis is always on the home team to go and score and look attractive.
“I wasn’t too disappointed with our first half performance in terms of the way we attacked them. I was disappointed we didn’t push up the pitch, we were too deep.
“It was too easy for Danny Kedwell and Gillingham were playing off him and we needed to squeeze up the pitch because I couldn’t see a runner coming off Kedwell.
“There was no threat I behind from Gillingham, so we could squeeze up the pitch if we wanted to do it.
“In the second half we got that early goal and then we did everything right. We won that first ball off Kedwell, the two centre halves were excellent, we squeezed up the pitch, we got all the knock-downs and we played some good football as well.
“Everything I said to them at half time, they gave me, and that is all you can ever ask for as a manager, but I thought there was some good performances out there today and we looked a really solid team at times.”
Tom Pope was surprisingly left out of the starting eleven at Crawley in midweek and he had to settle for a place on the bench against Gilingham, but when he came on at the start of the second half it didn’t take long for him to stamp his mark on the game.
“People make a big thing out of it but since he’s come back to the Vale and I have been here he has been a regular and he carries an awful lot of the hopes and aspirations of the supporters on his back. Adams said:
“So we leave him out for a little bit and let somebody else take the pressure, but he’s come back and got his goal and I am so pleased for him and he deserves it.
Ben Williamson was terrific with little reward in terms of goals, but he certainly caused them problems. We turned them round when we had to and I thought we out-powered them today.
“Without a shadow of a doubt we looked strong and physically fit and we kept going and wore them down.”