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James Gibbons prasies defensive display following Stevenage win

12 January 2020

It wasn't the prettiest of wins for John Askey's side yesterday afternoon but it was another clean sheet for the Valiants, and Gibbons is delighted in the way he and his teammates kept Stevenage at bay.

It was a windy afternoon down in Stevenage yesterday and with the home side opting to play the long ball on many occasions, the majority were dealt with by Nathan Smith and Leon Legge who both received praise from the Vale right-back.

Crisitan Montano continued to make the left-back position his own with Stevenage struggling to create anything down his side, and his performance was commended by Gibbons who also proved himself to be a stubborn customer.

It was a very encouraging display from the back four yesterday afternoon with Scott Brown also staying alert to pull off some vital saves in the first-half, but Gibbons stresses that everybody in the side should take credit for the clean sheet as the defending will always start from the front.

“Credit to Smudge [Nathan Smith] and Leggey [Leon Legge], they’re always going to win their headers, Monty [Cristian Montano] rarely gets beat and I’ll try my best not to get beat as well, it’s credit to the back four but the whole squad as well.

“We defend from the front, I thought the back four was defensively good today in difficult conditions, the wind was swirling especially in the second-half you could see balls were being carried through and some were holding up.

“I think we can mix them up as well and deal with that, we’ve got two centre-halves who love heading a ball, you’ve got Popey who can hold it up and be physical himself and you’ve got grafters in the midfield as well, you’ve got energy out wide and I think we can deal with most things they through at us today."

It certainly wasn’t the most enthralling performance from Askey’s side so far this campaign thanks to the conditions, but Gibbons’ admits that the players will not get down about the nature in which they won the game, as three points was always the most important thing.

The Valiants haven’t fared too well when playing sides who sit below them in the league table so far this term, and the 21-year-old admits that the importance of yesterday’s win should not be underestimated.

Gibbons’ labelled yesterday’s victory as ‘massive’ in regards to the club’s fight for a play-off spot, as Askey’s side continue to threaten the division’s top seven with just six points separating the Valiants and third place, Cheltenham Town.

“Coming to places like this it’s always going to be difficult but these are the ones you need to win, you need to pick up your points here, it may have been scrappy but three points is three points at the end of the day, we’re not going to get down about how scrappy the game was, three points is three points and we’ll take it.

“The stats don’t lie we have dropped quite a lot of points from winning positions but we always knew if we cold stay in a game, in a game like this, and you get Popey having a chance like that, he’s always going to take it.

“Any three points is a massive three points when you’re in our position, we want to push, we don’t want to be dropping scrappy points like we have done over the start of the season.


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