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Match Thread: Port Vale v Walsall


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Just now, tommytunstall said:

Thought the ref was quite decent, it was a very difficult niggly match. The were far sharper and more incisive. We were extremely poor straight from the off. Promotion is miles off.

The ref good - Really? 
how can football be played if a foul is given for every slight touch / time wasting etc 

he never had control of the game 

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Well that was awful tonight, people on here moaning about the referee, it wasnt him who was responsible for passing the ball to Walsall players and kicking it out of play every 30 seconds.  We were second to every ball, they wanted it more than we did.  That was the worst performance I have seen for a long time, equally as bad as anything under Askey.

As bad as we were tonight, what annoyed me the most was our awful support, 4700 home fans when 3rd in the league against local rivals.  I keep hearing from our fans on here what a big club we are but our home support is shocking, yes we take great numbers away but at home after one bad result they all stay away.  When we needed the supporters behind us, they were no where to be seen.  If that was Crewe and they had that support at home, we would have been laughing like anything.

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1 minute ago, valefan79 said:

Well that was awful tonight, people on here moaning about the referee, it wasnt him who was responsible for passing the ball to Walsall players and kicking it out of play every 30 seconds.  We were second to every ball, they wanted it more than we did.  That was the worst performance I have seen for a long time, equally as bad as anything under Askey.

As bad as we were tonight, what annoyed me the most was our awful support, 4700 home fans when 3rd in the league against local rivals.  I keep hearing from our fans on here what a big club we are but our home support is shocking, yes we take great numbers away but at home after one bad result they all stay away.  When we needed the supporters behind us, they were no where to be seen.  If that was Crewe and they had that support at home, we would have been laughing like anything.

That’s another thing that annoys me. Third in the league, against a local team who are bringing a few and we muster that crowd. We are always first to criticise other attendances but let’s look at ourselves. Notts County, Wrexham, Stockport, Chesterfield are all in the league below and a similar size to us and are putting us to shame. When was the last time we had consistently good crowds?

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Absolutely diabolical and I cannot defend it. Got it massively wrong and hold my hands up - people I criticised were spot on.

The worst Vale performance since Aspin. Utterly absymal in every regard. Clarke overthought his lineup and decided on Conlon on the right wing. What? Knew we were done as soon as he started chucking forwards on with no plan - sign of a panicking manager.

Everyone rubbish and Conlon was daft to pick up two yellows. Not a shot on target. Dan Jones has fallen off a cliff. The pass for the goal was bad enough, but his decision to fly in and leave Smith 2 v 1 was criminal and he needs dropping. Garrity is no footballer. Every touch is poor. 

They've turned up, outfought us, taken their only chance, and defended well against a pitiful front line from us. Had our trousers down and deserved their win. Defensively a good side and impressed with the composure of the keeper. Rubbish going forward and to only win 1-0 should disappoint them. A good side would have nailed us 3/4-0.

After the run we were on, the dip was coming, and we're well and truly in the mix of one now. We went on a 5 game winless run in November of the last promotion season. They happen. Clarke is a streaky manager and he has to arrest this pronto before it becomes full-scale crisis. Proctor looked unfit and needs to be carefully managed back, as we cannot afford a setback.

I still think we're going to do well. Tonight was a horrendous, horrendous showing from minute 1, but bad runs were inevitable and we need to ride it out. Hopefully we react to 2 defeats in the same way we'd react to 2 wins. This isn't things falling apart, but a big warning sign that we need to sharpen up.

Edited by Joe B
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4 minutes ago, valiant_593 said:

Pett was poor today I agree. It’s not easy for the midfielders when we set up like that though. Didn’t think he was any worse than Conlon or garrity (thought he was dire) 

Formation and defence have to change for the next match. 

Also think Politic is better as a sub looked knackered and completely ineffective after 50 minutes. 
 

                       Covalon 

Gibbons. Legge. Smith. Benning 

                 Walker. Pett 

Amoo.         Taylor (if fit)    Worrall. 

                   Rodney 

Proctor still looked a long way off I thought today, Rodney at least gave us an outlet. 
 

Jones and cass were hopeless as they have been for a few matches now. 

I’d rather Politic and give Worrall a rest. The poor <ovf censored> guy has been busting his legs for the cause every game with his hands tied behind his back by the formation.

I know it’s easy to say off the back of recent performances, but I’ve never liked Jones at CB, I like him at LB or LWB. I’d start him there in that formation you say. 

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That ref was atrocious.  Probably made it the worst game of football I've seen in a good while. That said we were really bad. Really bad. Losses happen (like vs Oldham, so it goes) but that performance was not acceptable. We looked scared stiff from the off for some reason. Sure all involved with know that. Let's hope they put it right Sat. But that was a worryingly poor effort.

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That was embarrassing tonight , as bad as I’ve seen us for years

Credit to Walsall they parked their Tank on our front lawn and extracted the urine

Out sang all game , outfought on the pitch , second to everything

Clarke got it wrong with the set up and tactics , we looked like we haven’t kicked a ball before

Appalling performance and I left the game very angry and I hope it’s just a blip

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First time this season I've come away from a game (either at Vale or watching on ifollow) absolutely fuming. I can accept a loss if we perform. We battered Oldham. But there was absolutely nothing to praise tonight. We were shocking from start to finish. Reminded me of the Coventry game under Bruno when we couldn't pass a ball for love nor money. Unfair to single any individual out for criticism as, bar Covolan, they were dire to a man. Formation wasn't the issue. It was the passing, running and all round quality. Just terrible. God knows the reason for it. Just hope it doesn't spiral like previous seasons. Confident that we'll get going again soon but it needs to be quick smart.

Special word to the ref - I can accept you giving everything as a free kick, or nothing as a free kick. At least that's consistent. But when something is a foul one minute but the exact same isn't a minute later, that's what fans can't abide. Scandalous

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There’s no excuse for not matching the passion, but I don’t think we have many personalities now who turn up and don’t give a damn, so maybe Clarkey has gone OTT saying it means <ovf censored> all. Anyway we’ll never know.

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Horrendous night. 

4700 home fans. Woeful. 

Apart from Covolan not one came out with a single ounce of credit. 

And as rose tinted as I am it was a ludicrous challenge by Conlon to get a second yellow. 

Agree with others about Jones , he's completely gone in the last 3 games. Needs an eye test as he seems incapable of finding a white shirt at the moment. 

Walsall were awful too , offered nothing really but didn't have to did they. Labadie had a good performance in his role as referee advisor, constantly in his ear appealing for literally everything. 

A truly awful insipid effort against what in reality is as mediocre a team you could wish to play. 

Onto Hartlepool and it feels a must win given we then have two difficult away games Newport and Bristol Rovers. 

 

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Just now, philmpv said:

First time this season I've come away from a game (either at Vale or watching on ifollow) absolutely fuming. I can accept a loss if we perform. We battered Oldham. But there was absolutely nothing to praise tonight. We were shocking from start to finish. Reminded me of the Coventry game under Bruno when we couldn't pass a ball for love nor money. Unfair to single any individual out for criticism as, bar Covolan, they were dire to a man. Formation wasn't the issue. It was the passing, running and all round quality. Just terrible. God knows the reason for it. Just hope it doesn't spiral like previous seasons. Confident that we'll get going again soon but it needs to be quick smart.

Special word to the ref - I can accept you giving everything as a free kick, or nothing as a free kick. At least that's consistent. But when something is a foul one minute but the exact same isn't a minute later, that's what fans can't abide. Scandalous

That’s it, if you bust a gut and throw yourself into everything and come off second best, that happens. Just standing around waiting to lose and having no plan is a different matter altogether. Coming up against better players that pass you off the park, <ovf censored> it that happens, but Walsall won’t even finish in the top half.

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15 minutes ago, valefan79 said:

As bad as we were tonight, what annoyed me the most was our awful support, 4700 home fans when 3rd in the league against local rivals.  I keep hearing from our fans on here what a big club we are but our home support is shocking, yes we take great numbers away but at home after one bad result they all stay away.  When we needed the supporters behind us, they were no where to be seen.  If that was Crewe and they had that support at home, we would have been laughing like anything.

Its not just the lack of numbers but lack of noise. To quote Walsall fans its was like a library at times even before we went a goal down.

I know the players have to give you something to support but sometimes the players need a big pick me up when they are struggling and our support at home needs to be much better than that.

Too many fans shouting your <ovf censored> at players when things not going to plan. I've never seen a player yet in any team to play better when your home fans keep saying you are <ovf censored>.

Honestly fans need to give the heads a wobble at times.

Edited by MBE
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The absolutely infuriating thing is, is that if Dan Jones doesn't decide to go flying in to make up for his 965th misplaced pass of the night, we don't concede and the game ends in a dire 0-0 draw, as neither team was gonna create anything through their own abilities. That's how poor this league is.

We played the worst we've played in about 5 years and conceded one real chance, completely of one player's making. 

Frustrated. We're still 5th and 3 points from 2nd, which we all we deem 'outstanding' if offered pre-season. We've chucked away 8 points in three games and only dropped 3 places. It's horrendously tight so Clarke simply has to show his managerial credentials. This isn't the apocalypse but a massive warning sign that maybe things were going a little too easily for us and 2 injuries and a confidence-sapping collapse can tilt trajectories rapidly. 

Clarke has done more than enough to suggest he'll right this, and to expect him to manage 46 games perfectly/us to carry on winning and performing was naive, but tonight was his very worst as a Vale manager.

Edited by Joe B
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It’s hard to pick the bones out of that, and if anyone can find any positives they are a better person than.

Not going to blame the ref, because they did exactly what any sane person knew they would do (and which their manager actually said they’d do) and start strong, physical and on the front foot crowding us out in midfield whilst winning free kicks in and around the box to see how we’d deal with high balls into the box. And yes, they played the ref like an absolute fiddle.

I do think Clarke has to shoulder some of the blame. Yes his hand was forced by injuries but we just had no guile, craft or physicality about us at all. It was pretty obvious that it wasn’t working when it takes 20 mins to have a touch in the oppo’s box when you’re at home. 

Where this leaves us I really don’t know. That was scarily similar to some of the horrific performances we started to put in this time last year so I really hope we are not about to enter into a similar slump. What is clear is that we cannot play that formation without Proctor and/or Wilson.

I hope’s pride has taken a dent after having 45 mins of p!ss taking and he find a way to keep the show on the road, because that was a major blow out tonight.

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