As Vale prepare to take on Chesterfield on Ernie Moss Day, here’s our brief guide to the weekend match…
Manager: Rob Page
Last match: 2-1 vs Gillingham
Form guide: W-L-W-W-L
Manager: Paul Cook
Last match: 2-2 vs Scunthorpe
Form guide: D-W-D-W-W
Ben Williamson: set to continue upfront
Rob Page could well keep faith with the same eleven that has served him so well over the festive period. It would mean that in-form Ben Williamson will continue as the lone striker and Chris Lines will have to be content with a place on the bench. The only person on the long-term injury list is striker Tom Pope. Opponents Chesterfield apparently have no injury problems.
Here’s our patented “finger in the air” possible Vale starting XI:
Yates – Duffy – Veseli – Dickinson (c)
Marshall – O’Connor – Brown – N’Guessan
“Everyone is working hard in training, enjoying training and enjoying the football we’re playing in the games so onwards and upwards…”
– Colin Daniel
Last time we met
Mark Marshall: on target for the Valiants
The Valiants slumped to a disappointing 2-1 home defeat back in August. Mark Marshall was Vale’s scorer but goals from Eoin Doyle and Vale tormentor Gary Roberts gave the Spireites the win despite Ian Evatt’s late sending-off.
- Vale wins: 31
- Chesterfield wins: 39
- Draws: 22
If Vale get it right, their meetings with Chesterfield can be goalfests. In 2010, Marc Richards scored a hat-trick in a 5-0 away win. In 2003, Marc Boyd scored twice in a 5-2 win. Micky Cummins and Marc Bridge-Wilkinson both scored braces in a 4-1 win in 2002. However, those who were there won’t forget wonder goals from Robbie Earle, Ray Walker and (in particular) Ron Futcher in a 1988 5-0 win.
The video features on OVF’s YouTube channel and you can see those strikes again by pressing play:
They played for both…
Sam Morsy: set to return to Vale Park
OK, we have a gut feeling that this could be a long section… Chesterfield’s current squad contains a fair sprinkling of former Valiants including:
- Midfielder Sam Morsy, a former young player of the year
- Defender Dan Jones, (right) who left Vale in controversial circumstances
- Former loanee Jay O’Shea, a Jim Gannon signing
- Former youth team graduate Charlie Raglan, who the Spireites signed from FC United
- Another former loanee Ritchie Humphreys, a veteran at 36
In recent years, Chesterfield have also boasted the likes of:
- Striker Marc Richards (right)
- Midfielder Sam Togwell
- Midfielder Danny Whitaker
- Striker Craig Davies
- Defender Clayton McDonald
- Midfielder Paul Harsley
Looking back a bit further we also have the likes of:
- Striker Bob Newton
- Utility man John Ridley
- Striker Ernie Moss
- Full-back Colin Tartt
- Striker (loose term) Martin Henderson
Ernie Moss Day
Vale fans are reminded that this game is designated as Ernie Moss day in honour of the striker who played with distinction for both sides.
He joined Vale in 1981 and was a favourite among the club’s supporters, winning player of the year for the 1981/82 season.
The 65-year-old, who is currently suffering from Pick’s Disease, a form of dementia, will attend the game along with family members and former teammates.
He will be introduced to the crowd at half time, giving supporters the chance to pay tribute to him.
Chesterfield will be selling a number of specially produced items to mark the occasion, including a limited edition badge and a unique ale called ‘Ernie 8’.
A minimum donation of £3 will be requested per badge and the money raised will be given to a dementia charity.
Chesterfield chief executive Chris Turner told the Spireites’ official website: “Everyone at the club was saddened to hear about Ernie’s condition and we wanted to show our support for him and his family while raising money for an appropriate cause in the process.
“We felt it was appropriate to stage the day when we faced Port Vale as he is also highly regarded there. He is one of the most popular players in the history of the club and his goalscoring exploits will never be forgotten.”