Port Vale fans will be hoping to prove the bookmakers, who have earmarked the club for relegation, are wrong.
Last season was a frustrating one for Vale fans. To come within touching distance of the play-offs in February and then crash down to 18th at the end of the season was somewhat harrowing.
A promising move for Vale fans is the acquisition of striker Uche Ikpeazu…
This season the team must try and push for a higher finish if they are to have any hope of escaping from the mire of third tier football any time in the future.
At the beginning of the 2014/15 season Port Vale were third favourites to be relegated from League One. They survived by the skin of their teeth but that performance has led the bookies to once again place them as one of the favourites to go down. Betfair have them at 6/4 to be relegated when this feature was produced with only Crewe Alexandra and Colchester United having shorter odds. How can the Vale prove these bookmakers wrong?
Fans will remember that not long ago the Vale managed to prove pundits wrong when they came back from being in administration to achieve promotion into League One. That was the season where Tom Pope put away an extraordinary 33 goals in the league. Now coming into their third year in the league they will be hoping to cement their position and become a stronger force.
A promising move for Vale fans is the acquisition of striker Uche Ikpeazu on a six-month loan deal from Watford, who were newly promoted to the Premier League. At 20, he is a young player and has a lot of potential. Vale boss Rob Page told the club’s website he is an ‘exceptional talent and a really physical player’. Vale fans will be hoping he makes an improvement on the two goals from 24 games for Crewe last season though.
This will show fans exactly what the team is made of and a win against other relegation favourites is imperative…
The 5-0 pre-season thrashing of Kidsgrove Athletic is also very encouraging. Trial player Ajay Leitch-Smith, 25, made an excellent case for a contract with the club. In the match he scored two goals, one of which was the goal of the game. With more pre-season friendlies coming up it will give the manager good opportunities to see who could make the cut in the first team next season.
Looking ahead to the start of the new season, Vale are due to face Crewe in the first game. This will show fans exactly what the team is made of and a win against other relegation favourites is imperative. Supporters will be desperately hoping that this season their nails won’t be chewed down too quickly come the last few weeks.
Come on the Vale!