As the excitement builds for the EFL Cup Quarter Final clash between Vale and Middlesborough, there’s more to the matchday experience than just cheering for your favourite team.
If you can’t go to the game due to a lack of tickets, then there are several things you can do beyond the on-field action to enjoy it. From placing strategic bets on Connor Ripley’s quest for a clean sheet against his former club to other intriguing activities, this article explores five ways to make the upcoming match an unforgettable event.
Get ready for a quarter-final experience that goes beyond the ordinary and adds a touch of excitement to every moment of the game.
1. Watch the game on TV with friends
While Vale supporters would disagree, this game is not the match of the round in the eyes of broadcasters, with Sky opting to show the Chelsea vs Newcastle and Liverpool vs West Ham games instead.
However, with the game being on a Tuesday night (7.45 kick-off), it does fall outside of the Saturday black-out ruling, so you can safely watch it from a foreign website with a VPN.
Although not announced just yet, providers such as DAZN normally screen the Carabao Cup, so you get lucky with one of them if you intend to watch with friends.
2. Buy a Vale shirt just for the occasion
If you’re not already a proud owner of the famous white jersey, then why not snap one up for the big game?
There are still plenty of 23/24 shirts still available in the club shop but you could also get last season’s jersey for a fraction of the price. Not to mention the tonnes of memorabilia available there, ranging from Vale scarves to coffee mugs.
Any purchase will not only let you show your support for the club but will also help them out financially: a win-win!
3. Use a free bet to back Connor Ripley keeping a clean sheet against his former club
Vale’s number 1 Connor Ripley has a point to prove against Boro. The 30-year-old stopper was born in the city and was released by the club in 2019 after making just a couple of appearances for them.
The keeper, then, will definitely have a point to prove when the teams go head-to-head. Ripley has shown that he’s capable of a clean sheet or two this season and we might see a superhuman effort from him in this game.
If you like the chances of this, then the odds will likely be generous seeing as Boro have had no trouble finding the net this season. You don’t have to dip into your own funds to potentially earn money from it, either. Many betting sites offer promos like a free bet or no deposit bonus in the UK and you could use these bonus funds to put a bet on Ripley to get the clean sheet.
A double win of a Vale victory and a winning free bet could make it a very special day indeed!
4.Engage in pre-match discussions on social media
A great way to build yourself up for the big game is to engage in the pre-match buzz on social media platforms. Whether it’s Twitter, Facebook, or specialized fan forums, participating in these online conversations allows you to connect with like-minded fans from around the globe.
These networks have fan-based discussions where you can share your predictions, discuss key player strategies, and indulge in friendly banter with supporters from both sides. They’re spaces that serve as a dynamic hub for the larger football community and build a sense of community before the big game.
Outside of social media, there are also various Port Vale forums where you can connect with fellow Valiants. Check them out!
5. Create a Matchday Playlist
Nothing gets you into the matchday mood like a personalised playlist. Add to the pre-game excitement with a collection of your favourite Vale anthems, team chants, and energising pump-up tracks.
Streaming platforms like Spotify allow you to share these lists with friends virtually, creating a communal atmosphere even when physically apart.
Studies show that music best reminds us of our memories, so you never know: if Vale win then you’ll have a bunch of tracks that remind you of a famous victory and the team’s onward march into the League Cup semis for the first time in their history!