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Nathan Smith Talks Pre-Season

10 July 2017

With pre-season still only being in its early stages, Nathan Smith has praised the work of the manager thus far.

Following a week at Mottram Hall and some intensive fitness sessions, the defender admits that it has been tough, but he knows that it will all be worthwhile come August.

He said: "Pre-season has been tough so far. We have been in every day working away, but it's only for our benefit.

"Overall it has been very good. Going to Mottram Hall is a fantastic experience and it has some great facilities, everything you need really. It's nice to get plenty of different things crammed in so it doesn't become repetitive.

"When we come to the season we hope to be better and fitter than every other team and it's all about doing what we've got to do on a Saturday or a Tuesday."

Tyrone Barnett scored a brace versus Kidsgrove on Saturday afternoon and Smith has been delighted with the way the latest recruit and the other new players have settled in.

He said: "At the moment it's all happy days, we are having a laugh and getting to know each other.

"Tyrone has come in and settled into things quickly. He's a lively lad and he has added to the group so I'm sure he will do well for us this season."

Another player who found the net on Saturday was Tom Pope. Already quite a cult hero at Vale, the striker didn't take much bedding back in according to Smith.

He said: "It's like he never left! He's come back in, taken it all by storm and there's never a dull moment when he's here.

"He has been there and done it too, helping us gain promotion from League Two before so it's another good signing to strengthen our squad."

Fellow defender Joe Davis also returned to Burslem earlier in the summer and Smith is relishing linking up with his former youth team partner once again.

He said: "I think we could form a solid partnership throughout the season if we are to play together. We played alongside each other before in the youth team and he's a good player - we know what we are both about."

Michael Brown's men are in action again on Tuesday night as they face the short trip to Newcastle Town.

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