Tom Pope has fond memories of his time with the Alex
Tom Pope will line up against his former club on Saturday with one thing on his mind and that is a win for the Vale.
He still has fond memories of his time there and says he is still full of respect for the club, the fans, and perhaps most of all one particular member of the Crewe coaching staff.
Pope said: “There have been some great games between the clubs over the years and it means a lot to the fans. Earlier on in the season when we took over two thousand with us to Gresty Road so that shows how much it means to the fans.
“You are not going to see any negative comment from me, they are a nice club with great fans who get behind their team and I wish them all the best.
“I still speak to a few of the lads at Crewe – I still speak to Bakes (Neil Baker), he’s a top man, so it is not a club that I look back on with any bad feeling, it is a club that I appreciate and I loved every minute of my time there.
“When you have got coaches like Dario or Steve Holland at the time, they are great managers and “coaches but they weren’t the ones who gave you the hair dryer treatment.
They would try and do things tactically rather than give you a kick up the backside and Bakes was the one who wouldn’t allow you to do anything wrong.
“He was in your face and I think Dean Ashton once said a hair dryer off Neil Baker was the turning point of his career and he appreciates bakes for what he did, and it is the same with me.
“He is a top man, he knows the game and he is still somebody who I speak to on a regular basis. He is what Crewe needs, somebody who isn’t scared to tell the young lads what they are doing wrong and what they have got to do to have a career in the game.
“He is there to keep the young lads hungry and I think he does a good job of it.”
And if Tom Pope scores in Saturday’s derby match at Vale Park, how is he likely to react?
“I am not going to do an Adebayor when he did it for Man City against Arsenal.” he said. “It is about respecting a former club and I wouldn’t want to rub anybody’s nose in it.
“Steve Davis is in charge and he is a manager I respect and I don’t hold anything against him, and the fans were great with me.
“So out of respect, if I was to score I don’t think I will go too wild about it, I would just get on with the game and try and get another.”