Dave Kevan praised the squad depth that Vale have this season after being forced to rotate on Saturday due to injuries.
In Saturday’s 1-0 win over Plymouth Argyle at Vale Park, David Amoo, Tom Conlon and Callum Evans were all forced to be substituted in the first-half with injuries.
Kevan expressed how pleased he and John Askey were with how the substitutes that were called into action performed, with Rhys Browne standing out as it was his debut game for the Valiants after returning from an injury.
The team were able to deal with the forced substitutions and were able to keep on the front foot and earn a deserved three points, and Kevan believes that the players who will now step into the squad will make sure they take hold of the opportunity at hand.
He said: “We certainly needed it [squad depth] on Saturday, it came at a price the three points, but the lads that have stepped in have come and done a great job for us and that’s the beauty of having a strong squad.
“It’s their [the players brought in] opportunity now and they certainly grasped that on Saturday and if they continue to do so then that’s why we have that squad and we have that competition.
“We’re going to need it [squad depth] throughout the season, but it gives someone else an opportunity and it’s important that they hopefully take that.”
Kevan provided an update on the players who were forced off on Saturday, saying Conlon had gone for a scan, whilst Amoo and Evans have injured their hamstrings, making all three players doubtful for tomorrow’s game.
One player who is fit to play against Exeter however, is Luke Joyce, who is set to make his 500th career appearance, a landmark moment and Kevan applauded the brilliant attitude he possess and how he is key player on the pitch and in the dressing room.
Joyce plays a role in the team that is pivotal to how the team play their football and often goes unnoticed by fans for his work, but Kevan made it clear that he is very much a valued player in the eyes of all the staff.
The team have had an air of confidence around them so far this season and it has shown on the pitch, with the Valiants now sat in 10th place this season, and despite Exeter currently sitting atop the table, they see no reason they cannot come away with points.
He said: “He’s [Joyce] a fantastic professional, he does everything correct, he’s a great example to the younger players as in how to go about his preparation for matches and training and obviously his performances have been very good this season so that’s a fantastic achievement.
“He’s [Joyce] very important to how we want to try and play, he gives us that protection in front of the two centre-backs and also gives us that link from the midfield to the forward and wide players, so he certainly doesn’t go unnoticed by the staff.
“I think we’ve been very positive all season in terms of how we’ve gone into games and tomorrow will be no different.”