Port Vale 0-0 Harrogate Town: Valiants held to a goalless draw by a battling Harrogate Town team at Vale Park.
Port Vale 0-0 Harrogate Town report
John Askey named an unchanged starting eleven after the away win over Exeter City.
The first-half was a game of very few clear cut chances as the visitors closed down Vale’s passing style. Harrogate had the best chance of the half but Scott Brown produced a superb close range save to keep out Martin’s near post header. Martin also missed a great opportunity at the end of the half as he was left unmarked in the box.
The Valiants had the ball in the net through Worrall on eleven minutes but it was disallowed. Otherwise they were restricted to half chances as Leon Legge headed over and David Worrall’s chip was too high.
John Askey made a change at the break with Shaun Brisley coming on for Zak Mills and Nathan Smith switching to right-back. However, once again there were few chances in the opening quarter of an hour.
On the hour mark, good work from Oyeleke and Nathan Smith set up David Worrall but his effort brushed the post. The Valiants then made a tactical chance by bringing on Harry McKirdy and moving Devante Rodney into the middle. The home side looked brighter after the change but the visitors were resolute in closing down the game.
More good work from Smith and Worrall set up Oyeleke but his scuffed effort went wide.
There was a dreadful challenge by Harrogate sub Kirby which could have caused a serious injury to Nathan Smith but the ref opted for a yellow card. Vale then went for broke in the closing stages bringing on Robinson for Joyce.
However, although Askey’s side stepped up the pressure in the closing stages, the visitors remained difficult to break down and Harrogate could have snatched a late winner. It looked like the dangerous Martin could have a chance as he broke clear but he was flagged offside then the same forward also went narrowly wide in the closing moment. Vale also had a late chance when Worrall was almost played through but the ball was just too long.
Credit to Simon Weaver’s well drilled side who had a game plan that Port Vale were unable to break down. For newcomers to League football, Town looked a good unit.
There were some good Valiants performances in the draw – Scott Brown, Leon Legge and Nathan Smith were again outstanding in the defence while Tom Conlon and Manny Oyeleke impressed again in midfield. Devante Rodney also showed glimpses of high class. However, it was a game where other players drifted in and out of the game and a frustrated Port Vale had to settle for a draw as a result.
Brown – Mills (Brisley), Legge, Smith, Fitzpatrick – Joyce (Robinson), Oyeleke, Conlon – Rodney, Cullen (McKirdy), Worrall
Subs: Visser, Crookes, Whitehead, Burgess