A late header from Tom Pope secured a solid point at Field Mill as The Valiants enabled a point against play-off chasing Mansfield Town Neil Aspin’s men will leave Nottinghamshire knowing that they are safe in the Football League courtesy of Pope’s 89th minute equaliser.
Mansfield threatened to counter The Valiants with a quick snapshot through Danny Rose who let fly from around 25-yards, eventually it being easily caught by Sam Hornby on six minutes.
Vale’s best chance so far came from Michael Tonge who tried a 30-yard effort following Tom Pope’s knock down. The ball was bouncing as Tonge’s attempt flew just over the bar.
The Stags kept coming as Mal Benning whipped in a delightful ball for Kane Hemmings, only to drive across Hornby’s goal by inches on 16 minutes.
Hornby continued to be the man of the moment, saving efforts from Hemmings and MacDonald as Michael Tonge had to come off due to injury.
Ben Whitfield came on, as the second half was underway.
Alfie Potter continued to impress down the Mansfield’s right-hand side as he got on the end of MacDonald’s cross to shoot just wide. Much to the relief of the Valiants supporters.
Hornby was once again called into action, pulling off a magnificent save from Paul Digby. His first-time effort was smashed towards his near post. But still, somehow, it remained 0-0.
The game continued to get tense with both sets of supporters making excellent noise. Ben Whitfield and Kyle Howkins were given yellow cards for dissent, with just under half an hour to play.
Vale had a chance through Nathan Smith as his storming run frightened the Mansfield defence, he tried to slip the ball through to Whitfield – but he couldn’t quite get the necessary touch needed.
Neil Aspin’s men soon came alight as Luke Hannant tried his luck from 15-yards. His left-footed effort forced Conrad Logan to a good save on 66 minutes.
The Stags got their goal, after a failed clearance managed to trickle to the feet of Howkins who put the ball in his own net. The opener started with MacDonald’s shot which was pushed into the area by Hornby when the goal occurred.
It was ‘Danny for Danny’ as Turner replaced Pugh, in hope of an equaliser for The Valiants.
It could have gotten easily worse for Vale as Howkins nearly managed a brace of own goals. The cross came in from the left-hand side as the on-loan defender’s clearance almost managed to go into his own goal.
Hannant was next to go in the referee’s book after bringing down the oncoming counter attack from David Flitcroft’s side. Shortly after, Worrall was next as five minutes remained.
Turner made an instant impact by making an excellent run to set up Tom Pope’s header as he finalised the result on the 89th minute.
After five minutes added on, the full-time whistle was blown as The Valiants kept their place in the Football League.
Mansfield Town Team: Logan, Bennett, Benning, Digby (Mellis 62), Pearce ©, MacDonald, Atkinson, Potter, Hamilton, Hemmings (Angol 83), Rose.
Unused Subs: Olejnik, Anderson, Hunt, King, Graham.
Port Vale Team: Hornby, Raglan, Smith, Howkins, Gibbons, Pugh (Turner 74), Kay, Tonge (Whitfield 44), Hannant, Worrall, Pope ©.
Unused Subs: Boot, Howe, Davis, Barnett, Forrester.
Attendance: 4210 (598 Vale Supporters).