Lots of work and endeavour but just lacking that goal mouth actionTown: Jayson Leutwiler, Mat Sadler, Ryan McGivern, Ian Black, Ivan Toney, Louis Dodds, Junior Brown, Jack Grimmer (Dom Smith 76), Gary Deegan, AJ Leitch-Smith (Ethan Jones 73), Adam El-Abd (c)
Subs: Mark Halstead, Olly Lancashire, Jim O’Brien, George Waring, Sylvan Ebanks-Blake
Port Vale: Jak Alnwick (c), Remie Streete, Kjell Knops, Sam Kelly (Dan Turner 84), Kiko (Paulo Tavares 62), Nathan Smith, Alex Jones, Sebastian Amoros, Anthony De Freitas, Ryan Taylor, Sam Hart ( Rigino Cicilia 52)
Subs: Chris Mbamba, Quentin Pereira, Miguel Santos, Gezim Shalaj
Referee - Scott Duncan
Assistant Referee 1 - Andrew Fox
Assistant Referee 2 - Jonathan Hunt
Fourth Official - Simon Mather
Paul Hurst makes two change from the side that started against Fleetwood Town on Tuesday night with Jayson Leutwiler coming in for Mark Halstead and Ryan McGivern coming in to replace Jim O'Brien.
It was a cagey opening to the game with neither side getting on top early on, Town had a couple of openings but when Toney tried to thread if through for Leitch-Smith to get in behind the defence it had a little too much on the ball. At the other end Vale were looking to put pressure on to the Town goal and when they found space on the right the ball was delivered into the danger area but Black had come across to clear the ball for a corner.
Town had a decent sight of goal with just over 10 minutes on the clock, the free-kick was delivered into the danger area, the ball was cleared but Town got the ball back into the danger area to find Toney, he brought it down and then looked to get his shot in but it was deflected behind for a Town corner.
The first booking of the game went to the visitors after an attack looked dangerous as Hart drove towards the Town box, he went down on the edge of the box but ref Duncan was close to the incident and it was a booking for the Hart for simulation.
Town had a good chance on 20 minutes when a Toney header over the Vale defence saw AJ in space in the box, he let it drop and then got his shot in but Alnwick was out quickly to block, the ball then dropped to Brown but he smashed his shot over the bar.
Vale won a throw deep in the Town half and the home side switched off, the Vale throw was taken quickly to find Nathan Jones in space in the Town box, he turned and then drilled in his shot but luckily he blazed it over.
Vale had a good chance on the half hour mark from a free-kick by the corner flag, the ball was put into the back post and a Vale head got up highest to nod it back into the danger are to find Amoros, but luckily for Town he put his header over the bar.
Town were pressing well at times and they were seeing some good pressure down the Vale left, Deegan and Grimmer were putting on the pressure and then the ball was played into the box for Dodds, he took a touch and then drilled in a low shot but it was just wide of the post.
The ball dropped just in front of the dugouts and Town put in the tackles to cut out the space for Kiko, Dodds came away with the ball but was caught late by Kjell Knops and it was a free-kick for Town and yellow card for the Vale man.
Town looked brighter after the restart and were getting at the visitors and moving the ball quickly looking to get something. Good pressing saw the ball with Toney, he burst into the box and then looked to get his shot in but went to ground under the challenge, ref Duncan was on the spot and didn't see enough for a penalty.
Town created a good chance after moving the ball quickly down the left, Brown had the ball and then fed McGivern who had gone on the overlap, he drilled a low cross into the box to find Leitch-Smith, he took a touch and put the ball onto his right but his shot was deflected behind for a Town corner.
Vale were looking to break quickly and the ball was played to Cicilia but El-Abd had read the situation and nicked the ball, he out the ball wide to Brown and continued his run forward, Brown drove to the byline and then cut the ball back and there was El-Abd with a shot, but Alnwick saved and Toney couldn't get the rebound before Vale cleared.
With just under 20 minutes of the half remaining Paul Hurst made his first change with Ethan Jones coming on to replace AJ Leitch-Smith.
There was a break in play after Jack Grimmer had slipped while making a challenge and had stayed down, physio Chris Skitt came on to take a look and it quickly became apparent that Grimmer wasn't able to continue and he was replaced by Dom Smith.
Town were pushing with the 90 minute mark fast approaching and were awarded a free-kick after Junior Brown was fouled. It was Ian Black who placed the ball but he didn't get the height on the ball and it went straight into the wall.
The last minutes saw both sides pushing and trying to nick the winner but in the end it was to end 0-0 in what was a pretty entertaining local derby that just lacked that little bit of quality around the goal areas.