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Club News

EYE ON THE OPPOSITION | Plymouth Argyle (A)

5 May 2023

Club News

EYE ON THE OPPOSITION | Plymouth Argyle (A)

5 May 2023

The final match of the 2022/23 campaign is approaching, and Port Vale welcome Championship-bound Plymouth Argyle to Vale Park.

The Valiants will be looking to prevent the Pilgrims from securing the League One title on the final day, as they currently sit top of the pile with 98 points, just one point clear of Ipswich Town with one game to play.

However, Argyle secured their promotion to the Championship after 13 years away when they beat Burton Albion 1-0 at Home Park last weekend.

Meanwhile, despite losing 3-2 away at Charlton Athletic last Saturday, Vale secured League One status for the 2023/24 season after other results went our way.

Andy Crosby will be looking to rain on Plymouth’s parade this weekend and secure an impressive double over the league leaders, after our 2-0 victory in Devon in December.

For the final time this season, here is what you need to know about the Pilgrims before we lock horns with them at the weekend.

ONE TO WATCH: Bali Mumba

Bali Mumba has been a constant bright spark for Plymouth in their promotion-winning campaign, and as the 21-year-old prepares to return to parent club Norwich City, he will be looking to make an impact in his final appearance for the Pilgrims.

Argyle’s number 17 put pen to paper to sign for Plymouth on a season-long loan in July 2022 and has netted six times, whilst also providing seven assists from wing-back during an impressive campaign.

Mumba started his career at Sunderland, making 10 appearances in all competitions for the Black Cats after coming through their academy.

After two years in the senior set-up, Mumba left the north-east to sign for Norwich City on a permanent basis in 2020 and has since featured for the Canaries nine times.

During his time in East Anglia, Mumba has been sent out on loan twice, including his current spell at Plymouth, with the other a one-season stint at Peterborough United.

Now preparing to turn out in Plymouth colours for the final time, Vale will need to ensure he doesn’t mark his final appearance with a bang.

THE MAN AT THE HELM: Steven Schumacher

In the away dugout on Sunday will be Steven Schumacher, who has masterminded Plymouth’s journey back to the Championship.

The 38-year-old was made permanent manager in 2021, after previously holding the position of assistant manager at the club.

Schumacher was a player before he started coaching, playing at a total of nine clubs in the professional game, including Bradford City and Fleetwood Town, across a 16-year playing career.

The Liverpool-born manager moved into coaching during the final season of his playing days at Southport, briefly taking over as caretaker at the club while also doing some work at Everton.

Schumacher worked alongside Ryan Lowe at Bury during the 2018-19 season, and after getting them promoted to League One, moved down to Devon alongside Lowe in June 2019.

Lowe left Argyle in December 2021, which opened the door for Schumacher, who has not looked back.

The young coach guided the Pilgrims to a seventh-place finish in his first season, before leading them to promotion this campaign, and he will be hoping they can secure the League One title on Sunday.


Vale wins: 4

Draws: 1

Plymouth wins: 0

Vale have a stellar recent record against the Pilgrims, including a brilliant 2-0 victory over Plymouth at Home Park in December.

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