Lincoln City condemned Vale to their third successive defeat in Sky Bet League Two on Saturday afternoon as they ran out as 6-2 victors at Vale Park, and goalkeeper Scott Brown admits he felt 'embarassed' after losing in such a manner.
Goals from Harry Anderson, Shay McCartan and an own goal from Leon Legge meant that the Valiants went into half-time with a three-goal deficit to chase, but they conceded three more after the break despite pulling two back courtesy of Tom Conlon and Ben Whitfield.
With Vale still to secure a point in the league during October, Brown is looking to switch the focus to the next fixture, but he insists that he and his teammates must take responsibilty for the way in which they performed on Saturday afternoon.
He said: "It was embarassing. We can only apologise to the fans and everyone that turned up today because it was poor. To concede six at home - five of which were set plays - is shocking and what more can you say? We can only hold our hands up.
"We failed to deal with Lincoln's threat and we knew exactly what they were going to do from set pieces, but you have to have the desire and the will to head the ball. They had that more than us today.
"We thought that if we could get into half-time at 1-0 down and then have the wind behind us, that wouldn't have been the worst scenario and we felt like we could come back. However, when you are 4-0 down after 48 minutes it's game over."
Vale were without several players on Saturday due to injuries, but Brown believes that not having Tom Pope out on the pitch was a huge blow for Vale as they looked to battle the elements and the physicality of Lincoln.
It remains to be seen who features during Tuesday night's Checkatrade Trophy clash with Middlesbrough Under 21s, but the goalkeeper is more focused on getting all three points away at Oldham Athletic next weekend.
He said: "Obviously losing Popey was massive because he is a target man and our focal point. With goal kicks and situations when the lads at the back are looking to hit that long ball up to him, we didn't have that on Saturday.
"The Oldham game is now the important one for me and I would rather get three points on Saturday and get back to where we need to be."