Neil Aspin is looking for somebody to step up and fill the goal scoring void for Vale as they look to climb away from danger in Sky Bet League Two, and the manager has been dealt a blow with regards to Tom Pope.
Having found the net on 11 occasions in all competitions so far this season, the 33-year-old is the Valiants' top scorer, but Aspin has revealed that he is set to be out of action for the foreseeable future after suffering a hamstring injury in Saturday's defeat to Colchester United.
With making the most of opportunities in the final third a problem for Vale so far this campaign, the gaffer is working on drafting in some more forward options during the transfer window, but he wants his current attackers to prove their worth too.
He said: "It's not looking good and we're going to be without Tom for a number of weeks, but when you are struggling things go against you, and he's probably the last player we'd want to be injured.
"We need strikers to come in, but we're going to have to deal with it. We've had to deal with it before, but it's unfortunate and it's certainly something we could've done without.
"We've got a number of strikers that we're trying to bring in and that was the case before Tom got injured, but we're hopeful we can get a player in this week.
"You'd have to say that the forwards we have at the club need to do better. We relied on Tom Pope last year and we have done again this year, but it's inevitable that he will get injuries at times and he's played with them.
"There are other players at the club who have the job of scoring goals, and they need to start doing that."
Vale go into this weekend's away fixture at Crawley Town without a win in the league since the 3-0 triumph at Yeovil Town back in November, and the manager is under no illusions that his side need to start picking up points in order to distance themselves from the bottom two.
Having watched on as Vale recorded a credible draw away at table-topping Lincoln City on New Year's Day, Aspin knows that the players are capable of matching teams in the division, but he is desperate for some consistency in the remaining months of the season.
"Of course the biggest problem is scoring goals, but until we are able to get a basis in the game by not conceding, we're not going to go on and get the win that we need," Aspin said.
"I know we're in a bad place at the moment and nobody recognises that more than me, but the only way we can change it is by winning a game. As soon as we get it, hopefully that would give everyone a lift.
"We can't wait forever for it because we need a result, but we've got to look to Saturday and be positive. We must go there to try and win the game - we need a win in the league to get us going again."