Grew confident Vale can continue to hold their own
Mark Grew believes the manager’s willingness to change things around when he feels it is necessary, regardless of the personnel is something that will stand the club in good stead this season.
Chris Lines and Tom Pope have each experienced being left out of the side and have benefited from the manager’s decision and Grew believes the gaffer has got it just right.
He said: “At the moment everybody is looking over their shoulder because the gaffer livened everybody up at Crawley. There’s nobody there now that can guarantee a place.
“If you drop off your form, it doesn’t matter what you have done in the past, it’s what you are doing in the present and it has put everyone on their toes.
“The biggest shock to everyone was Tom Pope being on the bench at Crawley. I don’t think anybody could see that Tome Pope was going to be dropped at Crawley last week.
“I know when I came out with the team sheet, the radio people rushed up the stand and couldn’t wait to get in on air, so it was a shock to them, but as it proved, it was the right move.
“Tom has come out and said that he agreed that he wasn’t doing the business – he comes on in the second half on Saturday and sticks on in and he is back to his old self, so but was probably the kick up the backside he needed.”
It is an old cliché, but Vale’s assistant manager doesn’t see anything to be scared of in League One. Vale currently sit ninth in the table and although it is early days yet, he doesn’t see a lot of difference from the top of the league to the bottom.
He said: “I think this league is much of a muchness. We played Bristol City here and they hadn’t won a game and they played as good as anybody. The football they played against us was fantastic.
“We have played all the top guys now, Wolves, Leyton Orient and Peterborough etc and we haven’t been hammered or come off thinking they have been the better side by a million miles.
“I think every team can beat anybody on their day as it has been proved. I have been a little bit surprised – I thought we would have had more difficulties than we have had this season.
“At the start of the season the bookies had us down as one of the favourites to get relegated, now all of a sudden they are probably looking and thinking it doesn’t seem right and the bookies are not usually wrong.
“We were confident at the start of the season with the squad we had that we could compete in this league and to be fair we haven’t been overturned or overawed by this standard, the big crowds or anything.”