Anthony Kay

Match report: Crewe 2-2 Port Vale

Match report: Crewe 2-2 Port Vale

Tom Pope scored his seventeenth goal of the season and Antony Kay hit a screamer but a late Crewe equaliser saw it finish all-square on Easter Monday.

Manager Neil Aspin made three changes bringing James Gibbons, Ben Whitfield and Antony Kay into the starting line-up.

However, Vale got off to a dreadful start when goalkeeper Ryan Boot dropped a cross and Ryan Wintle opened the scoring with just five minutes on the clock. The keeper made another error before being replaced early on due to an injury.

The Valiants drew level against the run of play when Nolan fouled Hannant in the box and Tom Pope converted the resulting penalty. Vale then pressed for the closing minutes of the first-half with Whitfield having an opportunity while Crewe’s Wintle forced a good save out of replacement keeper Hornby.

Neil Aspin brought on Tyrone Barnett at half-time and he almost immediately had a chance in the closing stages of the second-half.  Crewe then had an opportunity when Hornby failed to gather a cross but the sub keeper recovered. Another mistake at the back, this time from Howkins gave Bowery a chance which he couldn’t take.

It was a special strike that gave Vale the lead as veteran Antony Kay’s excellent long-range drive on 70 minutes gave the Valiants a 2-1 lead. Following his memorable strike at Yeovil it was another long-range special from the midfielder.

Neil Aspin took over goalscorer Pope with five minutes left as they gave their top scorer a rest. Home team Crewe pressed in the closing stages and there was a good save from Sam Hornby before Charlie Kirk forced the ball home with a minute left.

The draw meant Port Vale finished unbeaten over the Easter period and the nine point gap is surely enough to secure League Two safety this season.

It is credit to manager Neil Aspin’s impact that Vale are now effectively safe and who knows what the manager can achieve with a summer transfer window behind him.

Vale: Boot (Hornby), Gibbons, Smith, Howkins, Montano, Worrall, Kay, Tonge (Barnett), Hannant, Whitfield, Pope (Harness)

Subs: Howe, Middleton, Forrester, Davis

Attendance: 6,802 (2,254 away)

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