Some surprises but give the manager the benefit of the doubt

Some surprises but give the manager the benefit of the doubt

Rob Fielding argues that Rob Page has shown enough nous and potential to be given the benefit of the doubt after the retained list was announced.

Rob Fielding writes…

I doubt many Vale fans would have picked all of the thirteen names on the retained list but perhaps it’s best to remember that we are, by definition, fans and the manager is the manager.

In short, we simply don’t have any of the information that Rob Page possesses…

We look on from the outside without the benefit of knowing what wages have been offered, what budget restraints are in operation, which transfer targets have or haven’t rejected us. In short, we simply don’t have any of the information that Rob Page possesses.

It’s funny that for a game that is so often based on a leap of faith that our OVF poll result shows that many Port Vale supporters don’t have faith in Rob Page’s choices.

I would hasten to remind people that this is the man whose last summer retained list was derided yet we ended up with the likes of Anthony Grant, Sam Foley and (at the time much derided) AJ Leitch-Smith added to the squad.

I’m not saying Rob Page is perfect… the later additions of Theo Robinson and Matthew Kennedy provided mixed results – but this is still a rookie manager who still hasn’t been in charge for two whole seasons. He’s certainly one who looks to follow his own mind – and has often proven his doubters wrong by doing so – just look at his slow introduction of JJ Hooper as an example of how Page ignored the clamour to include him and waited until he felt it was the right time.

I’ll be interested to see how the likes of Sam Kelly and JJ do this season as Page (as he did with Enoch Andoh) has told the media that both will do better with a full season of League One training behind them. He was right with Andoh – will next season be Kelly’s year.

But back to the main subject… I think the good outweighed the bad in the transfer market last season and if Page can continue that and improve the Vale squad then it’s time to give him the benefit of the doubt with his retained list decision.

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