Assistant manager Dave Kevan spoke confidently when looking towards the remainder of Vale’s season, saying they can “compete with anyone at this level”.
The Valiants have started the season with a number of performances that have impressed both Dave Kevan and manager John Askey, and have been able to pick up 14 points so far this campaign, going unbeaten at home in the process.
The start has given Kevan confidence with how the players will perform as the season rolls on and highlighted how happy the staff are with both the ability of the players at their disposal as well as the mentality they all possess.
That positive attitude of the players was displayed in the Vale’s last home game when they came from behind twice to grab a late draw against Mansfield Town, and Kevan believes if things keep progressing how they have been then there’s no reason they cannot see success.
The Valiants now look to add another three points onto their total as they host Morecambe tomorrow, but Kevan spoke about how it will be another challenging fixture that they must approach with respect.
He said: “I think we’ve shown we can compete with anyone at this level, we’re happy with the group, we’re happy with the spirit amongst the group, so as long as we continue working hard and trying to improve then we feel we can continue to have a reasonably good season.
“We’re generally pleased with our performance level, obviously we’re a little bit frustrated that we haven’t maybe won a few more games but again over a season you’d like to think if our level of performance stays the same then maybe those draws can be turned into victories.
“Jim Bentley always puts a competitive team out and tomorrow will be no different, so we need to make sure that we’re right on it.”
Morecambe do however come into the game in a poor run of form, having not won a game in their last 10 competitive fixtures, but have a good record at Vale Park having not lost there since April 2011.
The home form this season has been central for Askey and Kevan’s plans and they have been able to pick up 11 points at Vale Park, with the fans support being credited as a key aspect to making the ground a fortress.
Another boost for the game tomorrow is that there may be a new face in the squad, as the versatile former Mansfield Town player, who featured a handful of times for the Vale early in his career, Will Atkinson has joined the side, and Kevan discussed how important his experience could be for the team.
He said: “We give all the opposition we play the respect that they’re due and it’ll be no different for Morecambe… the onus is on us at home, that’s the priority that we make sure we’re right and we’re prepared.
“We’ve enjoyed playing at home and hopefully the supporters have enjoyed the performances that we’ve put on this season… the support has been fantastic, they really get behind the lads and I’m sure the lads appreciate it, well I know they do.
“We’re delighted to have Will [Atkinson] on board, he’s got bags of experience, he knows the level, he’s a proper professional, you can see that in the way he goes about his work… delighted to have him and he becomes available to us.”