Port Vale saw their game postponed last weekend due to a frozen pitch giving the squad a longer break than anticipated after their last outing against Huddersfield Town in the FA Cup.
Defender Nathan Smith spoke exclusively to Valiant PlayerHD about the postponement: “It’s one of them, it happens unfortunately. But we prepared for it and expected it to be on, and it is a bit of set back that we did not play especially when you look at the table now.
However, the defender was not slow to put a positive spin on the longer break: “On the other hand, it may help us out and make us a bit more fresh for the game on Friday, and hopefully we will perform well on Friday and get three points.”
However, despite the rescheduling, the squad did not have the weekend off: “We got called in. Everyone was down in the gym and we had a good session. I think it was definitely needed. We could not go away and have a weekend off, and everyone has come in Monday and worked hard again,” the 20-year old said.
Vale have used the extra break to their advantage with regards to their injury concerns says Smith: “Well we had a few injuries from the last game and it has given them an extra week to get fit for the game on Friday. Hopefully it will show and we will come out on top.”
With the fixture against MK Dons being cancelled, Vale now have two games in hand on a large portion of the league. However, Smith says that the teams focus is still on the next game, rather than their games in hand: “I don’t think that is something people think about. We look at the next game and think about what we can do to prepare for that one and get the three points.
He continues: “Towards the end of the season is when you start looking at the table and how many points you need. But for now it is all about concentrating on the next game.”
After a festive period filled with changes around the club, Smith feels confident under now boss Michael Brown and is sure that the team can now push on in the second half of the season: “I think everyone has settled in well, there have not been any dramas and I think everyone is buying into Brown’s ethos and methods of playing, which so far have worked from the results in the league.”
With more time than anticipated to prepare for the Bury game, Vale will be looking for revenge after the corresponding fixture earlier in the season: “It is something that is in the back of our mind, and we want to do the same to them when they come here. We are all working towards the same goal and we don’t care how we get there, as long as we do.”
January 2017 and will be looking to continue their improved league form under Michael Brown.thPort Vale host Bury on Friday 20