Vale will play their first home game of pre-season tonight against Championship side Bolton Wanderers. We spoke to defender Richard Duffy about the prospect of playing tougher opposition than previously played so far.
Duffy believes that although fitness is the main reason for pre-season, matches against teams in higher leagues are also about practicing training routines in real game situations, before the season starts against Walsall on 9th Aug.
Duffy said: “The most important thing about pre-season is getting yourself fit and this game is no different with the lads getting another 90minutes under our belts. At this stage, we will also be putting in place what we have worked on in training, to get ready for the start of the season.
“The games that we have played before today have been more about fitness than getting a result, and we haven’t really been gauging the performance on the score line, but tonight will be the first proper test we’ve had.
“Bolton are an established Championship side and spent time in the Premier League a couple of years ago. This means it’s going to be a tough test, but we’ll go out there to try and stop them.
“It’s all about game time though because if we lose, nobody’s going to say we won’t do well in League One because these matches are about getting everything ready for the league.”
The experienced defender also admits he has one eye on next weeks match against a side he feels are even tougher opposition.
He said: “It will get even harder next week when we face Premier League opposition in West Bromwich Albion, but everyone wants to play against the best and that’s what we’ll get with Albion.”
Tickets for both pre-season home matches against Bolton Wanderers (Wednesday 30th July 7.45pm) and West Bromwich Albion (Tuesday 5th Aug 7.45pm) are available now from the ticket office, unfortunately there will be no .
Prices are as follows: