Port Vale 2 Shrewsbury Town 1
Saturday 8th September 2012
Town: Burton, Carpenter, Westray, Smith, Holmes, Musslewhite, Easthope, Fletcher (Evans 57), Stephenson (Gwilliams 75), Jones (Anderson 64), Ryan.
Subs not used: Molinuex, Wearing.
This reminded me of an old clash between a division 1 side playing a division 3 side, division 1 side being ourselves playing all the football but not creating or taking enough chances throughout the game and the division 3 side defending and lumping the ball forward without any real purpose.
First half we only created one half attempt at goal from Scott Ryan and no corners for us, which with the majority of possession isn’t enough. Port Vale were also allowed limited opportunities at our goal with Callum Burton only forced into one noticeable one handed save. Approaching half time the scores should have remained even until a pass out from our defence was met first by the Vale left back in front of Stephenson to forge an attack allowing their striker to turn Holmes in the box and strike low under the helpless Burton on 41 minutes to give Vale a 1-0 interval lead.
Second period should have forced our boys into a reaction however when Vale hit the bar 15 seconds into the half this should have been the wake up call, but it wasn’t. On 52 minutes Vale capitalised on an error from Smith which gave their striker the opportunity to pinch the ball, deliver a low cross to the far post to set-up an easy tap in at the back post on 52 minutes with Burton and Westray in no man’s land.
We then start to think this could be damage limitation but as we’ve seen before the boys continue to dominate possession and begin to create an end result with a shot, cross or a positive move and with a couple of changes we begin to have joy.
Easthope found Ryan with a good through ball for Ryan to hit low into the far corner to make it 2-1 on 67 minutes giving us plenty of time to get back in the game, and with good chances falling to Evans, Ryan and Smith you’d think it was only a question of time, but all too little too late as the score remained 2-1 to Vale.
Easy to say the obvious about starting games quickly, creating and taking chances but it is as simple as that! Guys must realise the importance of preparation and application from the beginning of the day not when they go behind or mid way through games otherwise it becomes a long winded way of learning.