This season’s second instalment of the Staffordshire derby takes place this Saturday as Vale square off against Burton Albion at Vale Park.
Vale come into this fixture 15th in League One, whilst the team from across the A50 sit three places below in 18th.
Here is some interesting pre-match reading for the fascinating clash this weekend.
The view from Darrell Clarke:
“Dino’s got them [Burton] going, he’s made them tough to beat,” said Darrell Clarke.
“They’re a very physical side, very much on the front foot, and are obviously fighting to stay in the league.
“It looks like they are going to [stay up] with the points they have been picking up recently.”
Opposition Boss’ thoughts:
Dino Maamria said: “You’ve got to be up to the challenge when you play Port Vale.
“You’ve got to do the basics well; you’ve got to scrap and compete. You’ve got to cover lots of distance because it’s a very big pitch. You’ve got to do all those things and you’ve got to play football as well.
“When you get the ball, you have to make sure you work it nicely and go forward with it because it’s important that when you play on these big pitches you don’t just defend.”
FA Cup Second Round, Pirelli Stadium, Saturday 4th December 2021: Burton Albion 1-2 Port Vale
In this fixture Flashback, we rewind back to December 2021 when super sub Dennis Politic netted a brace to knock Burton Albion out of the FA Cup in their own backyard.
Politic entered the pitch 16 minutes from time, and two goals in two minutes from the Romanian overturned a 1-0 deficit to send Vale through to the third round of the competition.
Burton took the lead after 23 minutes when Ryan Leak nodded in a Kane Hemming’s cross at the back post from close range, leaving Aidan Stone with no chance.
Six minutes after coming off the bench Politic brought us level with a deflected shot from the right which beat Ben Garratt.
Then, just two minutes later, the loanee took the ball past Garratt before rolling it into the net after he was sent through by Devante Rodney.
After a shaky start, Vale almost found a leveller through David Amoo in the 39th minute when he found space in the area, but his effort was parried away by Ben Garratt.
Only a minute later, the Valiants came close once again when James Gibbons got clear down the right flank and picked out Ben Garrity in the box, but his header looped over.
After our two big chances, Burton almost doubled their lead at the other end when Tom Hamer got onto a loose ball in the area and curled the ball inches wide of the post.
There was huge controversy in stoppage time of the first half when Garrity was taken out in the area by a Burton defender, right in front of goal, but referee Martin Coy was unmoved and waved play on with Garrity down on the deck.
Conlon had a big chance to get the scoreline level in a goal-line scramble on 66 minutes led to the ball falling to the Vale captain but his shot, through a ton of bodies, went wide.
The Valiants defended superbly in the remaining minutes to keep out the Brewers to send us into the third round of the Emirates FA Cup.
Last Time Out (League):
Sky Bet League One, Pirelli Stadium, Tuesday 14th March 2023: Burton Albion 2-5 Peterborough United
Peterborough United put on a five-star performance at the Pirelli Stadium in midweek as League One top scorer, Jonson Clarke-Harris, netted a brace in a 5-2 victory over Burton Albion.
The Posh number nine took his tally to 21 for the season alongside goals from Ephron Mason-Clarke, Harrison Burrows, Joe Ward in a frantic game that also saw Joe Powell and Jonny Smith net for the hosts.
Clarke-Harris gave Posh the lead against the run of play when headed home Mason-Clark’s cross from close range in the 12th minute.
Peterborough’s 23-year-old winger then turned from provider to scorer just seven minutes later, tapping home Ward’s blocked shot when it fell to him.
Powell halved the deficit for the Brewers just before the half-hour mark with a wonderful strike from distance.
However, the away side restored their two-goal advantage just 10 minutes later through Burrows when he fired into an empty net after good work from Ward on the righthand side.
Posh then pulled further away from the Brewers six minutes after the break through their captain when he finished expertly from Nathaneal Ogbeta’s cross.
Burton did not give up though, and they pulled one back once again in the 54th minute after substitute Smith fired home a rebound after his initial shot was blocked.
Once again, it only took Peterborough 10 minutes to respond with another goal, this time ward put the game to bed with a shot that smashed in off the inside of the post.
There could have been even more goals in the crazy game, but seven was enough in the end, and Posh grabbed all three points to rise up the table into eighth.
Sky Bet League One, Pirelli Stadium, Saturday 20th August 2022: Burton Albion 0-2 Port Vale
Back in August, two second-half strikes from Ben Garrity and Ellis Harrison gave Vale their first win on the road this season, away at local rivals Burton Albion.
Our number eight’s strike was his first of the season, and it set us well on our way to victory before Harrison made sure of the three points in stoppage time with his second goal in as many games.
Garrity sent the away faithful into pandemonium only four minutes into the second half when he slammed home a rebound after Harrison saw a shot saved into his path.
Harrison then confirmed the three points for the Valiants in style, after he flicked Harry Charsley's long ball around the final Brewers defender before rounding Ben Garratt for his second in Vale colours.
The hosts started the game on the front foot, and the first chance of the match came via Victor Adeboyejo, when he forced a save from Stevens into the side netting just three minutes in.
Stevens was called upon next for Vale, producing a fabulous save to tip a Jonny Smith curling effort just past the far post to keep the score at 0-0 just inside 20 minutes.
The Valiants started to grow into the game as the first half progressed with our former midfield Brad Walker producing a wonderful effort from distance that was tipped just over the bar by Garratt at the half-hour mark.
Ben Garrity came agonisingly close to scoring the opener for Vale late in the half, seeing his low strike cleared off the line by John Brayford, after great work by Tom Conlon to set him up.
Straight up the other end it was Albion’s chance to test the Vale resolve, and once again Smith cut in on his left testing Stevens with a stinging effort, but our keeper saved comfortably.
Vale started the second period quickly, and on another day could have been awarded a penalty when Garrity burst through off of a Stevens goal-kick.
However, after getting in front of his man and seemingly being dragged down to the floor, the ref decided to wave play on.
After the opener, Vale continued piling the pressure on, and it took a double save from Garratt to prevent a Mal Benning outside-of-the-boot shot and a Conlon follow-up doubling the visitors lead.
Benning almost did the unthinkable with minutes left on the clock, when his brilliant corner had to be tipped over by Garratt to stop it curling in.
Brewers’ Team News:
Burton midfielder Ciaran Gilligan looks set to return this weekend after a period on the sidelines, a big boost for the visitors.
Tom Hamer, and Deji Oshilaja are set to be the only absentees for Maamria’s side when they come to Vale Park on Saturday, the Brewers will be coming to Burslem with a strong side.
18/02/23: Bristol Rovers 1-2 Burton Albion, Sky Bet League One
25/02/23: Burton Albion 0-0 Accrington Stanley, Sky Bet League One
04/03/23: Ipswich Town 4-0 Burton Albion, Sky Bet League One
11/03/23: Burton Albion 2-1 Wycombe Wanderers, Sky Bet League One
14/03/23: Burton Albion 2-5 Peterborough United, Sky Bet League One