Port Vale fell to their fifth away defeat of the season at the hands of Bolton Wanderers on Saturday.
The home side started bright and scored their three goals within the opening 16 minutes, giving Bruno Ribeiro’s men a tall mountain to climb for the remainder of the game.
However, Vale came out strongly in the second half and they showed more resolve and grabbed themselves a goal through Liverpool-loanee Sam Hart.
First team coach Andy Smith spoke exclusively to Valiant PlayerHD about the teams performance after the match:
“We’re disappointed, extremely. The first half wasn’t good enough at all. We lacked enthusiasm and energy and basically gave them the first two goals.”
Smith wasn’t slow to comment on the lads’ character as they improved in the second half: “The second half was much better, and we showed people what sort of football we are capable of. But you need to come to these sort of places and start like that, otherwise you get a hammering in the first half.”
Also, the former Northern Ireland international was quick to identify the cause of team’s downfall: “In the second half we came out and played much better but you need consistency.”
Smith feels the Valiants are still within touching distance of where they want to be: “If you lose two on the spin, then win three on the spin, you’ll be up there or you’ll be down there, you just have to keep that consistency in this league.
“We have winnable games coming up in the next month and I believe we will be okay,” he added.
A positive to come from the game was the performance of Sam Kelly.
The winger made his first start for the club this season and Smith was quick to recognize this: “He did very well, he has been training very hard and he was probably our stand out player today. He looked to get on the ball and cause them problems, so that was pleasing.”
Coming up for Port Vale is the visit of Stevenage FC in the FA Cup on Saturday, as the Valiants look to progress through the competition: “We can’t wait for it. It will be a difficult game at home, but everyone wants to be involved in the competition and we are looking forward to it.”