Port Vale 0-1 Salford City: Port Vale’s poor recent form continued as they lost to Salford City on Tuesday evening.
Manager Darrell Clarke made several changes from the side beaten on Saturday with James Gibbons and Aidan Stone both starting. However, captain Tom Conlon was ruled out through injury.
It was a scrappy start with Vale’s new strike force of Edmonson and Harratt both having half chances. Salford’s first chance fell to Ryan Watson whose snapshot went over Stone. However, it was the visitors’ only chance of the half as Vale came more into the game. There were chances for Chris Hussey whose header was saved, Brad Walker found the net before the ref blew for a foul Ben Garrity’s powerful effort was cleared off the line by former Valiant Theo Vassell.
There was then an unusual break in play around the half-hour mark when Connor Hall collided heavily with the goal post and running repairs had to be made before play could resume. Hall had to replaced shortly after the incident while there were ten minutes added to the end of the half.
The closing stages of that added time were dramatic as Vale pressed for the opener. Ben Garrity had a surging run only to be denied at the last moment and the same player hit the post just before the half drew to a close. It had been a much improved performance from the Valiants with impressive performances from Garrity, Worrall and their youthful but energetic forward duo.
Half-time: Port Vale 0-0 Salford City
However, once again Vale put on a performance of two halves. Firstly, some sloppy defending saw Walker concede a corner and from the resulting set-piece the ball was chipped to Tom Elliott whose shot beat Stone at the near post.
The Valiants made changes in both personel and formation but for all their huffing and puffing they were unable to find an equaliser. Sub David Amoo livened up the game but should have done better with one effort late on. The same was true of fellow sub James Wilson who miskicked from close range. There was also a melee in the box where no-one could put the ball in the net and Vale also thought they’d got a penalty in the last minute when Worrall went to ground but it was waved away.
It was a bitterly disappointing defeat for the Valiants who failed to build on a decent first-half display. With new signing Hall and captain Conlon injured it would be a surprise if Clarke doesn’t continue to add to his depleted squad during the remainder of the transfer window.
Full-time: Port Vale 0-1 Salford City
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Port Vale: Stone; Gibbons, Smith, Hall (Martin); Worrall, Pett (Amoo), Garrity, Walker, Hussey; Edmondson (Wilson), Harratt
Subs: Hurst, Cass, Benning
Port Vale bookings: Walker
Attendance: 4,311 (139 away)