Vale make the trip to Prenton Park on Saturday to face Tranmere Rovers in Sky Bet League Two, and Scott Brown insists that the squad are in confident mood despite Tuesday’s defeat to Carlisle United.
With four league fixtures now played, the Valiants have six points to their name and they will be looking to add three more to their tally in Merseyside this weekend.
Having won promotion with Wycombe Wanderers last season before making the move to Vale Park, Brown is remaining level-headed, but he does believe in the quality of the squad.
He said: “It’s a 46-game season, so when you win you can’t get too high and when you lose you can’t get too low. If we win on Saturday, it’s been a good start to the season.
“There is competition for places all over the pitch and the gaffer is looking to bring another one or two in, so we know there is a battle for positions in the team.
“When we play 11 versus 11 in training you wouldn’t know which is the starting team or the lads outside of that. Everyone knows that if they’re not going well they will be out of the team, so we have to perform on a matchday.
“It’s a new club for me and I wasn’t aware of the winless run away from home, but it’s a new group and we’ve only played two away games so far this season.
“Against Colchester they were just the better team, but at Carlisle we were right in the game, so it’s not a big thing and we’re determined for that record not to play on our minds.
“Credit to Carlisle, they came right out of the traps and put us under pressure straight away from kick-off, but we knew they couldn’t press like that for 90 minutes.
“We we’re confident we would get a spell in the game and we did, but unfortunately we couldn’t do enough during it to get a result. When you’re having those spells, you need to make the most of them and turn them into goals.”
Since his summer arrival, Brown has already played behind several central defenders, but he admits that he feels comfortable with any of those individuals in front of him.
The goalkeeper is expecting another tough test against the newly-promoted Tranmere side, but he has full belief that a positive result can be secured if he and his teammates perform to their maximum levels.
On Vale's defensive options, he said: “Everyone has seen what qualities they’ve all got, especially Leggey during the last two games where he has been absolutely brilliant.
“Connell has been a revelation really, coming in from TNS and making the step up, he’s been excellent. Then everyone knows what Smudge is like and his record of starting so many games in a row is unbelievable.
“He deserves a lot of credit for that and it just shows what a character he is that he didn’t moan about being left out against Crawley, he just came back in on Tuesday and did very well.”
“It hasn’t been a bad start to the season and it hasn’t been a fantastic one, but it’s somewhere in the middle for us to build on. Five or 10 games in is a good marker and we will see where we are after that.
“If we win on Saturday it won’t be anything to get excited about and if we lose it won’t be the end of the world, but we will go to Tranmere looking to take all three points.
“They’re a fantastic club with great history, and it’s a really good place to play football. The pitch will be good and they’ll be bouncing because they’re used to winning games, so we know we will have to quieten the fans early doors.
“If we play to our best, we know have a chance of getting something out of the game and that’s what we will be looking to do.”