Port Vale make the trip to the Sixfields Stadium to face Northampton Town this afternoon as they look to bounce back from last weekend's defeat to Forest Green Rovers.
Fixture: Northampton Town vs Port Vale
Competition: Sky Bet League Two
Date: Saturday 30th March 2019
Venue: Sixfields Stadium
Referee: Neil Hair
League Position: 21st
Top Scorer: Tom Pope (11 goals)
Port Vale will been keen to finish off a positive month with a win as the fight for Sky Bet League Two survival hots up. Before last weekend's loss to Forest Green, Vale were unbeaten in the month of March and the boss has urged his players to end the season in a high note. A win this afternoon could potentially take Vale 10 points clear of the drop zone, depending on other results.
John Askey has been boosted by the return of captain and top goal scorer, Tom Pope, who has continued full training over the past few days and looks set to return to the match day squad. Whether he makes the starting 11 is yet to be seen.
Vale will be without the services of James Gibbons once again as the young full-back continues to recover from an illness picked up over the past few weeks.
"It will be a tough game, but to come away with a result will be give us massive confidence and take us another step closer."
John Askey, Manager
League Position: 13th
Top Scorer: Andy Williams (9 goals)
Keith Curle's Northampton head into this afternoon's clash off the back of a loss having been beaten by Cheltenham Town in their last outting. Goals from Luke Varney and former Vale man Tyrone Barnett were enough to sink the travelling Cobblers.
They will be out to put things right following their 2-0 loss to Vale earlier this season courtesy of goals from Ben Whitfield and Manny Oyeleke. However, last weekend's defeat ended a run of eight games without a loss in the league.
Curle may be able to call on Aaron Pierre and Jordan Turnbull as the pair are set to return to first-team action. Pierre has returned from international duty with Grenada, whereas Turnbull looks to have shaken off a knock picked up a few weeks back.
However, Junior Morais is set to miss out following an appendix operation.
One to watch: Andy Williams
32-year-old forward who wears the number nine fore Northampton Town. The experienced forward has enjoyed a lengthy career that has spanned over 15 years and he certainly still knows how to find the back of the net.
Williams' career began with Hereford United when he made his debut back in the 2003/04 season. Having made 74 appearances for Hereford, he then joined Bristol Rovers before being loaned back twice to his first club.
Eventually, Williams left Bristol in 2010 to join Yeovil Town before going onto represent the likes of Swindon Town and Doncaster Rovers.
Having signed for the Cobblers in 2018, he has contributed to nine goals so far this season, as well as a further three assists.
John Askey: "It would be huge. Depending on results, we could go 10 or 11 points clear of relegation so that would be massive at this point in time.
"If we can get the three points, then hopefully we can finish off the season really well and strong. Northampton are obviously a good team - a strong team who have done well in the past nine or 10 games."
Keith Curle: “I think we need six wins and a draw if we want to make the play-offs and the onus and accountability is on us. We need to just try and accumulate as many points as possible and be there if anyone slips up.
“When I say 'we' I include the supporters, they can play a massive part and they were phenomenal again last Saturday."
iFollow The Vale will be providing full 90 minute commentary from the match, whilst the Port Vale Twitter and Facebook feeds will be providing live updates for the entirety.
There will also be build-up to the game with the official Snapchat and Instagram accounts: officialpvfc.
Reaction will be available on the official website post-match, as well as on YouTube, iFollow and social media.