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Season Preview: Port Vale

30 July 2019

We continue our 2019/20 season preview by featuring our near-neighbours Port Vale -

Nickname : The Valiants.

Stadium : Vale Park

Capacity : 19,052

Round Trip From The Moss Rose : 34.6 miles

Last Season : 20th

In what proved to be a tumultuous season off the pitch, Vale secured their League Two status by finishing in 20th position.

At times, it looked as though The Valiants would become embroiled in a relegation fight but despite being plagued by inconsistency for much of the season managed to steady the ship somewhat when it mattered the most.

Under new ownership, Vale are optimistic about the forthcoming campaign and have made numerous quality signings to enhance this further.

If Vale can hit the ground running, then brighter times could be just around the corner in Burslem.

The Gaffer - John Askey

A man who needs no introduction to the Moss Rose faithful, John Askey will forever remain a Silkmen legend no matter how the years may pass.

A former Port Vale youth apprentice, Macc secured the services of the versatile winger from Milton United in 1984.

Over a nineteen year playing career, John became our record appearance holder and also our fourth highest goalscorer.

Not only that, John played a pivotal role in creating some of the most iconic moments in our entire history as The Silkmen rose from the Northern Premier League to competing with the likes of Manchester City and Stoke City as equals.

After signing off on an illustrious career with one final goal against Rochdale 2003, John turned his attention to the coaching side of the game, where he was to make another poignant contribution to the history of our club.

A brief first stint at the helm occurred in 2004, yet it was John's second appointment nine years later that will be etched into Silkmen folklore forevermore.

John steadied the ship somewhat and then began to build what would ultimately become one of our greatest ever sides.

A trip to Wembley in 2017 ensued as we contested the FA Trophy Final with York City, but what was to follow was that usually confined to fairytales.

Despite having only one player signed up at the end of the 2016-17 season, John put together a side which stormed to the National League title against all the odds.

In doing so, John became only the second man in our history to lead Macclesfield Town into the Football League - alongside his former mentor, Sammy McIlroy.

John's achievement was such that he was subsequently awarded the Freedom of Macclesfield and countless other accolades which paid tribute to what represented a phenomenal achievement.

After thirty-four years at the club, John emotionally said farewell to the Moss Rose in the summer of 2018 - as he was appointed as manager of League One side Shrewsbury Town.

It proved to be a short stay at The New Meadow however, as he relinquished the role the following November.

This cleared the way for John to return to Vale Park, as he took over the reigns from Neil Aspin - initially on a temporary deal, but this was made permanent over the summer.


Transfer Dealings.

Out - Michael Tonge, Antony Kay, Theo Vassell, Mike Calveley, Luke Hannan, Harry Benns, Danny Elliott, Dan Turner, Dior Angus, Sam Hornby

In - Adam Crooked, Kieran Kennedy, Richie Bennett, Scott Burgess, Ryan Lloyd, Mark Cullen, David Amoo, Callum Evans, Rhys Browne

Our Last Meeting.

The two sides last met back on 27th April, as Macc claimed a precious three points towards our survival bid.

In a match played in horrendous weather conditions, the game was an evenly-contested one for much of the afternoon - with both sides having chances to break the deadlock.

Ultimately, one goal would settle it and that came from an unlikely source in David Fitzpatrick. The left-back stormed through the middle of the park, before rifling home an unstoppable drive from twenty-five yards out.

The goal was subsequently voted as our best of the season and meant that we only needed to claim a point in our final league game with Cambridge United to secure our EFL status.

Our Next Meetings.

Home - Saturday 12th October

Away - Wednesday 1st January

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