Skip to main content Skip to site footer
Match Previews

Match Preview: Port Vale vs Forest Green Rovers

23 March 2019

Port Vale take on Forest Green Rovers in Sky Bet League Two this weekend and John Askey's men will be determined to stretch their unbeaten run to five games. Here is all of the key information ahead of the fixture...

Fixture: Port Vale vs Forest Green Rovers

Competition: Sky Bet League Two

Date: Saturday 23rd March 2019

Kick-Off: 3:00pm

Venue: Vale Park

Referee: Paul Marsden

 

Port Vale

Form: LDLLLLDWWD

League Position: 20th

Top Scorer: Tom Pope (11 goals)

Last weekend's 0-0 draw away at Swindon Town stretched Port Vale's unbeaten run to four games in Sky Bet League Two, and the gap between the Valiants and the bottom two now stands at eight points going into Saturday's encounter with Forest Green Rovers.

John Askey's side started their upturn in results with a goalless stalemate away at Notts County, and they then followed that up with impressive home victories against Mansfield Town and Yeovil Town. That has provided the squad with a confidence boost, and they will be determined to make it five games without defeat this weekend.

Tom Pope could still be missing as he continues to nurse a knee injury, but the manager has stated that he is nearing a return to action and he could face a late fitness test before kick-off. Other than that, Askey has a fully fit squad to choose from.

Forest Green Rovers

Form: WDLLWLLLWD

League Position: 6th

Top Scorer: Reece Brown (8 goals)

After sealing promotion to the Football League back in 2017, Forest Green Rovers have been eyeing a leap to the third tier and they are currently within the play-off places in Sky Bet League Two. They have picked up four points from their last two games via an away win at Colchester United and a home draw with Carlisle United, so they will be eager to build on that.

Prior to those two positive results, Rovers had endured a three-game losing streak, with defeats coming against Mansfield Town, Lincoln City and Morecambe. Despite having the second best away record in the division, their home form is ranked 18th, with only six of their league wins coming at The New Lawn.

The return of Christian Doidge did provide Mark Cooper with a welcome boost, however, and the striker has gone on to score five goals in 13 appearances to help boost the club's promotion hopes. Rovers' manager is also set to have a full strength squad at his dispensal.

 

One to watch: Reece Brown

Having been capped for England at youth level up until the under-20s, Reece Brown is a player who certainly has a lot of talent. A product of the Birmingham City academy, the attacking midfielder is now looking to work his way back up the footballing pyramid foillowing his release from the Blues in 2017.

He then signed a one-year deal with Forest Green, but after impressing during the 2017/18 campaign, the 23-year-old agreed a new deal to keep him at the club. As a player who boasts great technical ability he has the potential to unlock defences, and that has made him a favourite amongst supporters.

In front of goal, he has found the net on eight occasions this term and he is in inspired form of late, netting three of those in his last four appearances. He will want to keep that run of finding the net going this weekend, and Vale will have to find a way to nullify his threat.

Talk

John Askey: "I've always said we're looking to try and get 50 points. If you get 50 points I think we're definitely going to stay up. It might be less, but in the players heads they've got to be looking at getting another three wins.

"I've said since I came in that home form is vital for us if we're going to stay up. You want to play well in front of the home support.

"The last few games they've been able to get behind us and hopefully that'll be the case again. It's down to the players performing so that the crowd can do that and enjoy it."

Mark Cooper: "They played really well against Mansfield and beat them, they then beat Yeovil before getting a good point away at Swindon, so they're on a little run and it will be a tough game.

"It always is difficult at Vale Park because it's a massive pitch, but it's a game we're looking forward to."

 

Coverage

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.


Advertisement block