Micky Adams was full of praise for matchwinner Tom Pope after his fourth goal of the week helped Vale earn all three points at Carlise.
Adams commented: “We created a chance for him and he stuck it away and is back to his old self.”
“Tom was outstanding and gave their centre halves a real torrid time and he is getting his rewards.
“If we can get enough decent balls into him he will score goals.
“We had a bit of luck late on when their fella blazed over the bar and we will have stiffer tests.
“It was an important game for both teams. We wanted a clean sheet and the lads at the back did all the right things at all the right times.
“Winning breeds confidence and gives the players belief as well as sending supporters home happy. I thought we deserved that. As the game developed we wanted to go and win it and put on three more attacking players and went for it. The three lads had an impact on the game.”