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Match Previews

MATCH PREVIEW: Port Vale vs Stevenage

16 March 2018

Neil Aspin's Port Vale host Stevenage this weekend looking to build upon two away draws at Grimsby Town and Barnet in Sky Bet League Two. You can find all of the important information ahead of the clash below...

Fixture: Port Vale vs Stevenage

Competition: Sky Bet League Two

Date: Saturday 17th March 2018

Kick-off: 3pm

Venue: Vale Park

 

Preview

The Valiants return to home soil following two away trips in the past week, with Darren Sarll's Stevenage making the northbound trip to Vale Park.

In the reverse fixture back in September, it was Boro who picked up a deserved 2-0 win at the Lamex Stadium as Danny Newton and Jonathan Smith ensured their side continued their impressive form.

Vale will be looking for revenge this time out, and having secured two points on the road in the last week, they will be eager to go one better and pick up all three in front of the home crowd.

Mansfield were the last side to prevail in Burslem back in November, meaning Aspin's men hold an unbeaten record that provides encouragement heading into this clash.

 

The Opposition

Stevenage currently lie 16th in Sky Bet League Two, just two places and six points above Vale who moved up to 18th following the midweek stalemate at Barnet.

Last time out, Boro were held to a 2-2 draw at home to Crewe Alexandra, a side battling against the drop in the division.

Their away form has been a cause for concern all season, with only four successes coming on the road.

A slender victory over Chesterfield, the team that prop up the rest of the league, was their last on their travels on the 27th of January.

 

One To Watch - Danny Newton

Having spent the majority of his career thus far in the non-league pyramid, Newton's impressive form for Tamworth last season saw him given the opportunity to participate in the V9 Academy, a programe set up by Jamie Vardy.

The striker netted 28 goals in the National League North last season and he has continued to prove his worth after making the step up to the Football League.

Now 26 years of age, he will be hoping to become established in the professional game and he has fired home 11 league goals this campaign.

Blessed with pace, power and a natural eye for goal, Vale's back line will have to be alert to the danger on Saturday.

 

Team News

Vale remain without long-term absentees Kjell Knops and Adam Yates as they will be sidelined until the end of the season. 

Antony Kay has returned to training following his recent operation, but he is still a doubt for the clash, while Tom Pope is out recovering from surgery on a hernia. Joe Davis and Kyle Howkins will also be assessed ahead of the game.

Stevenage will be without Ben Wilmot after he was called up to the England Under-19s squad. Alex Revell serves his final match of a suspension, with Dean Bowditch likely to feature despite the striker missing the game with Crewe.

Matt Godden and Ronnie Henry are contenders to return to the squad, but Alex Samuel is still sidelined.

 

Talk

Neil Aspin: “I think it’s difficult for supporters when they haven’t gone anything to shout about, they’ve had a really poor season. We’ve got to make sure we can give them something to cheer about on Saturday and get behind us for the rest of the games”.

Darren Sarll: "They are all dangerous games, it is a big pitch, there is a lot of ground to cover when you play against Port Vale. We know a couple of their players very well, Michael Tonge, and I worked with Tom Pope at a previous club.

“You have to respect people like Tonge, Danny Pugh and players like that. They are good footballers, have had wonderful careers and are still going very strong with a high level of motivation may I add.

“It is a tough place to go Port Vale, it really is." 

 

Coverage

Follow The Vale will be providing full 90 minute commentary from the match, while the Port Vale Twitter and Facebook feed will be providing live updates for the entirety.

There will also be build-up to the game with the official Snapchat account: officialpvfc.

Reaction will be available on the official website post-match, as well as on YouTube, iFollow and social media.


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