English League Two Matchday 38 Analysis & Predictions: Port Vale Play-off Push

Heading into matchday 38 of the English League Two will be sure to provide some drama-filled moments, amongst the chaos, let’s attempt to filter out some valuable betting predictions when we take a closer look at Port Vale versus Crawley Town.

Port Vale vs. Crawley Town

10:00 am EST

 Saturday, March 14th at the Vale Stadium

 

Port Vale hope for fine home-form to continue

While Vale’s surge into the play-off places has certainly slowed down in recent weeks, with the club sitting in eighth place they’ll be looking forward to this weekend’s fixture as the perfect bounce-back spot.  Their eight-game undefeated run is something to be positive about especially with one of the best home records in the division.

This form will be a problem for Crawley who has been victims of poor away form this season. They’ve only managed to win one game on the road during the 19/20 season, not giving much hope for a win this weekend.

Crawley away form plagues them

The travelling team this weekend is one of the worst teams in the division when playing away from home. Through 18 away days, they’ve managed a measly 13 points, with 17 of those 18 games ending winless. Crawley has registered more draws on the road than any other team in League Two.

In a clash with two teams that both hold the most draws in the division (15 each), you’d expect the obvious and the experts think these fixtures points towards a draw. Crawley aren’t the only side with record-breaking drawn games, Vale has the second-most draws at home this season, whilst their previous three games finished level. The two teams delivered a draw in the first meeting this season and you could expect a similar outcome this weekend; a low-scoring, potentially drawn fixture.

John Askey encouraging his squad for the play-off spot

However, Port Vale manager John Askey has told his players to hold no regrets as they enter the final quarter of the League Two campaign with just nine games remaining. With two back to back home matches in front of Vale, they’ll be hunting for the valuable three points in each game.

Former seasons saw Vale fight relegation battles, but Vale manager believes that those days are over and his squad are growing a belief and hunger as they head towards a promotion opportunity.

The Port Vale manager told Stoke on Trent Live: “I think we can see that starting to happen. I think there are only three or four players in the squad who have won something, so we must get that winning mentality.

“You can feel it in the dressing room before the games, and you can see it in the games. So, hopefully, we will have 20 odd players who have achieved something.”

He added: “These positions don’t come along very often. So, you have to make sure that you grab it with both hands. That is the message to the players. You are in this position; you have done well so far. Don’t let it fall by the wayside.”

Numbers & Trends

  • Port Vale have the second-highest number of home draws in the division
  • Crawley has seen the most away draws in League Two this season
  • Both teams have scored in 89% of their home/away games this term
  • 89% of Crawley’s games on the road have seen both teams score
  • Crawley have scored 21 on the road this season whilst giving up 28 goals
  • Port Vale have gone 8 games since their last loss and 8 home games since their last home loss
  • Crawley haven’t won an away fixture in 15 games, but are unbeaten in their previous four fixtures
  • Port Vale have bagged at least two goals in four of their previous six games at Vale Park
  • Port Vale have only kept one clean sheet in six their previous occasions
  • Port Vale have scored in 15 of their 17 home matches this season
  • These two teams last met on 14.12.2019, which ended in a goalless 0-0 draw Port Vale haven’t lost in domestic competition to Crawley Town in their previous three meetings
  • Port Vale haven’t been beaten at home in their last 8 league fixtures

Final thoughts

Since their first encounter, both teams have become handy in front of goal; racking up large scoring tallies. With the away side holding such high numbers in their away goals (89%), I’d expect them to grab a goal in the trip to Vale, who similarly holds an 89% record but for their home goals respectively.

It’s obvious that both sides love a draw, and given the run of both teams in that department, it would be hard to ignore the value. I think we can see both teams grab a goal and end the game in a score-draw. It wouldn’t be crazy to back a 1-1 correct score as it’s become the highest % score-line at this ground.

Prediction: Port Vale 1 – Crawley Town 1

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