Leyton Orient go into the game with their unbeaten away record intact and they will be hoping to add an eighth win on the road in all competitions. Port Vale will be looking for their second win this month and they will believe they can get a positive result having avoided defeat in their last three games at Vale Park. Here we preview Saturday’s game:
Top scorer: Tom Pope 16 League One: 9th FA Cup: 4th Round League Cup: 1st Round
Last term Port Vale performed well in their first season back in League One in five seasons. Mickey Adams led the Valiants to an unexpected 9th placed finish. They were comfortable, sitting just inside the top half of the league for the vast majority of the season and they were never in danger of returning to League Two at the first time of asking.
Port Vale’s strength last season was their home form and Tom Pope’s 16 goals were also important in helping the Valiants achieve a respectable position.
Adams’ side also did well in the FA Cup last term, making it to the fourth round before losing to Brighton.
[tabs title1=”IN” text1=”Ryan McGivern (Hibernian, Undisclosed), Colin Daniel (Mansfield Town), Mark Marshall (Coventry City), Byron Moore (Crewe Alexandra), Frederic Veseli (Ipswich Town, Loan), Jordan Slew (Blackburn Rovers, Loan), Achille Campion (Norrby IF, Loan), Dany N’Guessan (Unattached). Stéphane Zubar (Bournemouth, Loan), Reiss Greenidge (West Brom, Loan), Remie Streete (Newcastle, Loan), Harry Panayiotou (Leicester, Loan) Dany N’Guessan (Unattached). ” tabs title2=”OUT” text2=”Jordan Hugill (Preston North End, Undisclosed), Ben Jefford (Welling United), Daniel Jones (Chesterfield), Doug Loft (Gillingham), Jennison Myrie-Williams (Scunthorpe United), Gavin Tomlin (Crawley Town), Anthony Griffith (Shrewsbury Town), Rob Taylor (Mansfield), Kaid Mohamed (Northampton, Loan),Liam Chilvers, Anthony Griffith, Chris Shuker.” ]
Top Scorers: Tom Pope 9 League One: 18th FA Cup: N/A League Cup: 2nd round
Port Vale started the season by going three games unbeaten but since then they have struggled for form. Six consecutive defeats followed which led to Mickey Adams’ resignation, but caretaker boss Robert Page managed to halt the losing run by beating Barnsley in his first game in charge. However, Port Vale now find themselves out of form again having won just once in their last five League One games, though they are unbeaten in their last three at Vale Park.
On Tuesday night ten-man Scunthorpe rescued a draw against the Valiants. Both sides managed to score inside the opening ten minutes. Neal Bishop opened the scoring for the Iron after four minutes but Ben Williamson equalised just three minutes later. Chris Birchall put Port Vale in front on 70 minutes and when Jennison Myrie-Williams received a second yellow card soon after, it looked like the Valiants were heading for a win. However, Scunthorpe drew level through Lyle Taylor who headed home to make it 2-2.
Last lineup: Neal, Yates, McGivern, Duffy, Dickinson, Dodds (Birchall 65′), Lines, O’Connor, Marshall, Williamson (Slew 85′), Pope.
Subs: Johnson, Birchall, Brown, Moore, Veseli, Slew, Streete.
Former Swindon forward Dany N’Guessan joined Port Vale on Thursday and he could make his full debut for the Valiants against the O’s on Saturday. Leicester loanee Harry Panayiotou is also a new arrival and the young striker could be included in the matchday squad.
Robert Page could need extra firepower up front as top-scorer Tom Pope is a serious doubt. Pope suffered a knee injury in the draw against Scunthorpe and therefore he will need to be assessed ahead of the game.
The Valiants will be without Stephane Zubar as he is suspended following his straight red card against Preston last weekend. Goalkeeper Chris Neal is still on the sidelines.
Page has suggested that he will make changes in a bid to shore up his side’s leaky defence.
[textmarker color=”E32222″ type=”background color”]Leyton Orient[/textmarker]
On Tuesday night Kevin Nugent saw his side win a league game for the first time since he took over from Russell Slade.
Jay Simpson gave the visitors the early lead against Doncaster. The former Arsenal striker collected a misplaced pass just outside the area and managed to use his strength to hold off a challenge, before finding the corner of Jed Steer’s net.
Donny would probably felt aggrieved not to have equalised before the interval . First Elliot Omozusi blocked James Coppinger’s shot on the line after the ball fell kindly to the Rovers man. Then, Paul Dickov felt that his side should have been awarded a penalty shortly before the break. Gary Woods was caught out by a direct ball but fortunately Scott Cuthbert was able to block Nathan Tyson’s shot, however the hosts felt the Scotsman had used his hand.
Just after the hour Darius Henderson scored his fifth goal of the season to put the O’s 2-0 up and he did it in style. The striker recovered an over-hit corner and swung the ball towards the far top corner. Steer got a hand to it but he couldn’t keep it out.
In midweek Shaun Batt was the only substitute with experience of senior football which shows how depleted the Orient squad has been due to injuries and suspensions. Charlie Grainger, Sam Ling and Scott Kashket have all been on the bench already this season, but at the Keepmoat Stadium they were joined by second-year scholar Montel Agyemang and first-year scholar Victor Adeboyejo.
Orient’s injury problems continued on Tuesday night as well. Wolves loanee Jack Price suffered an ankle injury and he returned to his parent club and therefore he is unavailable to face the Vale on Saturday. It is hoped that Price will be fit enough to return to the O’s before the end of his 93-day loan.
However Kevin Nugent will be able to recall Nathan Clarke and Mathieu Baudry now that they have served their one-match suspensions. Romain Vincelot missed the win at Doncaster due to the slight knee injury that he suffered against MK Dons, but he could be fit enough to return for Saturday’s game.
The treatment room remains busy at Brisbane Road. Kevin Lisbie (shoulder), Lloyd James (broken leg) and David Mooney (ankle) are all out of action currently. Dean Cox is back in training following a spell on the sidelines with a knee injury but he isn’t expected to return on Saturday. Adam Legzdins is making progress on his recovery from a finger fracture and Gary Sawyer is approaching a return to full training after a period out with a knee injury.
Italian striker Gianvito Plasmati has taken part in some training with his new teammates, but his lack of fitness means he is not yet ready to make his debut.
After reverting to 4-4-2 in mid-week, Nugent could well keep that shape.
Lowry and Cuthbert formed a solid partnership in the centre of defence, while Bradley Pritchard performed well considering he was playing out of position at right back. However with Baudry and Clarke available again it seems unlikely that Pritchard will continue to fill in at right back. Elliot Omozusi could retain his place at left back, therefore there may not be room for both centre-backs to return.
Assuming he is fit again Vincelot is likely to go back into the heart of midfield. Bartley may keep his place after performing well on Tuesday.
Port Vale have a poor recent record against the O’s having won just one of the last five meetings.Last season Orient won both games between the two sides.
Last time the O’s made the trip to Vale Park they claimed their first away win over the Valiants in 57 years. Dean Cox put the O’s 1-0 up just before the break with a fine curled finish from the edge of the area. Nathan Clarke then wrapped up the victory on the hour as he scored a header from Lloyd James’ corner.
At Brisbane Road in September Orient managed to snatch a late win. Louis Dodds put the visitors ahead mid-way through the first half, but David Mooney restored parity just three minutes later. The Irishman then grabbed his and Orient’s second goal on the brink of half-time to give the O’s the lead at the interval. Ten minutes in to the second period, Jennison Myrie-Williams equalised for Port Vale. It appeared as if the match would end in a draw, but in the 88th minute Kevin Lisbie grabbed the third, making it 3-2 to Orient.
Port Vale’s last win over Orient came at Vale Park in March 2008. Adam Boyd put the visitors ahead as he scored from the spot, however the Valiants staged a second-half comeback. First Marc Richards equalised with 15 minutes remaining, then David Howland snatched the winning goal in injury time.
[textmarker color=”000000″ type=”background color”]Match Officials[/textmarker]
Referee: Lee Collins
Assistants: Robert Atkin and Mark Griffiths
Fourth Official: Michael Hanley
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