In a dramatic game, Vale recovered from an awful first-half to take the lead through the impressive Remie Streete and emerging cult hero Rigino Cicilia but a late Oldham goal made it 2-2 in the dying moments.
Manager Bruno Ribeiro made two changes bringing in Martin Paterson and Anton Forrester into the starting eleven.
The Valiants got off to their now familiar slow start with Oldham forcing a succession of corners. Vale had just the one decent effort – that coming from winger Sam Kelly who was trying hard on the flank.
But during an otherwise dire first half for the Vale, they lose Forrester on his comeback as he was replaced by Kiko and the home side would have been comfortably behind at the break if they had been playing more clinical opponents.
However, it took just two minutes of the second-half for the opponents to take a deserved lead when a free-kick was deflected in. It could have been two just minutes later but another effort was disallowed for handball.
It is fair to say Vale were in disarray at that moment but instead of conceding that drew level through man of the moment Remie Streete who equalised with a header on 50 minutes. The home side then made two changes with Pereiria replacing the off-form Tavares and Rigino Cicilia coming on for the off-colour Paterson.
The changes saw Vale coming far more into the game with both subs having a positive impact. Kiko had a long-range drive and then Cicilia claimed he was fouled in the box but both were to no avail.
The visitors still had a couple of chances to go back in front but Streete put in a good block and another effort went narrowly wide. Vale retaliated with a shot from Cicilia that went wide.
With ten minutes left, Alex Jones put in a dangerous shot and the ball broke for the lively Cicilia who put the ball into the net for his third of the season. It brought the Vale Park crowd to their feet as they applauded their new hero “Reggie.”
Oldham still weren’t out of the game and they hit the cross bar in the 85th minute. Vale then had a late chance as Alex Jones went close. However, there was a late sting in the tale as Oldham equalised in the 95th minute to take a share of the points.
Despite that late disappointment, the performances of subs Kiko and (in particular) Cicilia will also give Bruno Ribeiro food for thought when he names his next Vale starting eleven. But Vale still need to address their slow starts if they are to move up the table.
Attendance: 3,152 (148 away)
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