A Cristian Montano brace helped Port Vale on their way to a resounding victory in Somerset, as all three points head back to Burslem as Vale beat Yeovil Town 3-0 at Huish Park.
Montano scored Vale’s first with 13 minutes played, and set the tone for the evening as they dominated the play from start to finish.
A smart Connell Rawlinson header strengthened Vale’s position in the tie, before Montano well and truly ended the proceedings with an impressive finish from the edge of the box, to ensure Vale end their two-game losing run.
Neil Aspin named three changes heading into the league tie as Manny Oyeleke, Antony Kay and Theo Vassell came in to replace Ben Whitfield, Luke Joyce and Mitchell Clark.
It was Vale who started the brighter of the two sides as Luke Hannant was first to threaten the score-line. The winger did well down the Vale left-hand side to keep hold of the ball, before standing up a deep cross to the back post which crashed against the cross bar as Stuart Nelson in the Yeovil net couldn’t quite reach the attempt. The Glovers eventually clear, though looked shaky in the opening stages of the game.
Aspin’s side maintained their early pressure and were awarded with a goal on 13 minutes. It all started with Hannant, again on the left-hand side, as the winger found Oyeleke after a brilliant run from the midfielder. Manny then clipped the ball back to an on-rushing Montano who cutely side footed into the far corner to give The Valiants a well-deserved early lead.
Leon Legge almost doubled Vale’s lead with 23 minutes played as the defender rose highest from a Tom Conlon corner, however he couldn’t steer his header on target as the ball sailed over from eight yards out – a big opportunity missed for The Valiants.
Dissimilarly to Legge just moments earlier, Rawlinson made no mistake from a Conlon corner to give Vale a 2-0 lead with just over half an hour played. Conlon whipped the set-piece to the heart of the box and the big centre-half evaded his man to steer the ball into the far corner with a smart header – his first ever league goal.
For the first time in the game, Scott Brown was tested on 36 minutes as Wes McDonald took range from the edge of the box, though the Vale stopper was equal to the attempt as he parried away from danger. McDonald then found himself in the same position five minutes later, however this time his effort sailed high and wide. His miss was the last action of the half as Vale headed down the tunnel two goals to the good.
Aspin’s side were in dreamland with just a few minutes played in the second-half, as Montano scored his second of the game to give The Valiants a three-goal cushion.
Hannant once again came bounding down Vale’s left-hand side, before he found Montano on the edge of the box who slotted into the far corner to put his side out of sight with a good 40 minutes play.
Somehow, Vale failed to add a fourth with 58 minutes on the clock, as Nathan Smith was merely inches away from converting a Tom Pope nod down to well and truly end the game for Aspin’s side.
There was to be no hat-trick for Montano as he was replaced on 71 minutes by Louis Dodds, as the Colombian winger put in his performance of the season in Somerset.
Set-pieces had proved pivotal for The Vale as they always looked dangerous from Conlon’s corner-kicks, and Legge came agonisingly close to finally adding a fourth as he thumped a header goalwards on 74 minutes, for it to be cleared off the line and away from danger.
Again, Vale failed to sweeten an already impressive performance with a fourth goal as Legge and Pope both plant headers wide from inside the area, however the result was never in doubt as The Valiants comfortably play out an enormous 3-0 win away to Yeovil Town.
The Vale now look ahead to that Checkatrade Trophy tie with Stoke City Under 21’s.
Yeovil Town: Nelson, Dickinson, Warren, Mugabi (Mahmutovic, 45), Browne, Gray (Santos, 26), Zoko, Pattison, D’Almeida (Green, 63), McDonald, James
Unused Subs: Patrick, Rogers, Arquin, Scott
Port Vale: Brown, Montano (Dodds, 71), Legge, Kay, Oyeleke (Joyce, 76), Pope, Hannant, Rawlinson, Smith, Vassell, Conlon
Unused Subs: Hornby, Gibbons, Quigley, Kanu, Whitfield
Attendance: 2174 (113 Vale)