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Town Insider - Port Vale

18 September 2012

Fleetwood Town face arguably their toughest League 2 challenge when Port Vale visit Highbury on Tuesday evening.

By David MitchellTicket office open Tuesday 9am to KO at 7.45pm Jim's Sports Bar open for homee & away supporters 5.30pm

Fleetwood Town face arguably their toughest League 2 challenge when Port Vale visit Highbury on Tuesday evening. 

The match is, within Town’s short league career, the club’s first top of the table clash as third-place Town meet second-place Vale.  The sides are currently separated by the narrowest of margins on goal difference with Port Vale on +9, Town +8. With both Saturday’s substitutions tactical it looks as if Town manager, Micky Mellon, will once, again be able to pick from strength.  He is eagerly looking forward to Tuesday’s encounter: ‘It promises to be another fantastic occasion under the Highbury floodlights.  Second play third at an early stage in the season, admittedly, but we are very excited to be involved in games like that.  We’ve made a great start and I’m delighted to have won four on the trot but we won’t get carried away.  Micky Adams has got his lads playing good football and we need to be at our best to counter that.’ Adams returned to manage Port Vale in May 2011 after being sacked by Sheffield Wednesday.  His side extended their unbeaten league and cup run to five games after coming back to beat Plymouth Argyle 3-1 on Saturday.  Adams kept the same team for the seventh game in succession at Plymouth.  This is something that the manager has not experienced before, as he told the club’s website: ‘There doesn’t seem to be anybody carrying niggles either so we are obviously getting the preparation right.  They are enjoying the football and so mentally they are not feeling the niggles as they would normally.  They are a confident group and don’t want to lose their place in the team or in the eighteen.’ Both sides have had four wins and a draw from their first six games.  The match pits the league’s tightest defence against the most prolific attacking force.  Port Vale have hit the back of the net sixteen times with Tom Pope currently the league’s top marksman on six, alongside Gillingham’s Danny Kedwell.  Town have conceded just twice in six games. Port Vale is one of the few English league clubs not to be named after a city or town.  They are based in Burslem, one of six towns that make up Stoke-on-Trent.  Their greatest periods came in the 1950s, including an FA Cup semi final in 1954, and under manager John Rudge who steered the club to more than a decade of success in the 1980s and 1990s, including cup glory and promotion campaigns.  Since then there have been problems off the pitch and the club entered administration in March 2012. Fleetwood Town have invited special guests to Highbury for the game.  Members of Fleetwood Cricket club and the captain of Fleetwood Rugby Club, Ryan Riches, will be present as the town celebrates an amazing treble.  On Saturday, the cricket club were crowned Northern Premier League Champions following Town’s winning of the Conference and the rugby club becoming champions of the North Lancashire & Cumbria League.

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