Carlisle Utd v Port Vale preview: can the Valiants make it a magnificent seven wins in a row with an away win over Carlisle on Saturday lunchtime?
Image: “Welcome to Brunton Park” by Rose and Trev Clough is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
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Teams: Carlisle United v Port Vale
Competition: League Two
Venue: Vale Park Stadium
Kick-off: Saturday 17th April, 12:30pm
The Valiants made it six wins in a row for the first time since 1996. Can they now step up and make it a magnificent seven? Carlisle have picked up two away draws in their last fixtures but their home form is good with two wins from their last two home games.
Port Vale team news:
The sale of Manny Oyeleke earlier this week means that Vale must make a change to their last line-up. We reckon there may even be two. First up, Jake Taylor (pictured) is favourite to take over Oyeleke’s central midfield role. Kurtis Guthrie has also had some impressive performances off the bench recently and he may challenge Theo Robinson for a starting place upfront. It remains to be seen if Cristian Montano is fit to start – but with James Gibbons back in the eleven, Montano may have to settle for the bench anyway.
Possible Starting XI:
Brown – Smith, Legge, Brisley – Gibbons, Joyce, Conlon, Taylor, Worrall – Rodney, Guthrie
One to watch:
He’s had a quiet start after returning on a permanent deal, but this is surely the time for Jake Taylor to try and cement a permanent place in the midfield. He’s likely to take over from Manny Oyeleke and how he links up with Tom Conlon could have a big impact on Vale’s summer signing plans.
46 year-old Chris Beech was appointed Carlisle United Manager on the 26th November 2019. He’s been in charge for 68 games with a 35% win ratio.
Jon Melish is the top-scorer in the League with ten goals. Other familiar faces are forward Lewis Alessandra, who has seven goals and former Vale trialist Gime Toure, who has two goals. There’s also former Stafford Rangers and Nantwich Town defender Rod McDonald and experienced goalkeeper Paul Farman.
Veteran midfielder Luke Joyce is expected to face his former club after joining Vale from Carlisle in the summer of 2018. The holding player has now made 126 appearances for the club following 171 appearances for Carlisle over two spells. Harry McKirdy could technically face his former club after he was re-registered but as he’s not in the Vale squad his chances are remote. The forward scored eleven times for the Cumbrians last season. A third Vale player – David Amoo – also had a two year stay with Carlisle between 2013 and 2015 making 79 appearances and scoring sixteen times.
In the opposing ranks is midfielder Callum Guy, one of the stand-out performers in League Two this season. The midfielder had a loan spell with the Valiants in 2017 when he made eleven appearances.
Last time we met:
The Valiants lose 1-0 at home earlier in the season. There was only the one fixture in 2018 when the Valiants won 2-1 at Vale Park thanks to goals from David Worrall and Mark Cullen (pictured). Vale’s last visit to Carlisle ended in a loss back in 2018. The Vale did win 2-1 in 2017 though, thanks to strikes from Tyrone Barnett and Tom Pope. Overall, Vale have fourteen wins to Carlisle’s fifteen with ten draws.