Kenny Lunt appreciates that it will be another tough afternoon for the Alex against our local rivals, Port Vale if we move away from playing our natural game. The club’s assistant manager says that it is vital that we play the game and not the occasion as we prepare for our first derby clash of the season this weekend.
Lunt and manager David Artell took advantage of our game being called off at the weekend at Forest Green to go and watch the Valiants take on Oldham Athletic at Vale Park. The encounter ended goalless with Lunt proclaiming that the Vale were the better side and were unfortunate not to have claimed all three points after creating the best two chances.
Ahead of our meeting at Gresty Road this weekend, the assistant said of the Valiants: “We took the opportunity to go and watch them at the weekend and they deserved to probably have won it.
“They play with a high press and with a lot of energy. That is something John (Askey) introduced last year and you have to stand up to that and play football. We will have to stand up to their set-pieces and we have been a lot better at that this season.
“They have some good players and they still have the big lad up front and they are not afraid of loading the box with crosses.
“We have to focus on what we do and show why we are top of the league. I don’t think we performed against them last season. There wasn’t much in the game at Gresty Road and they snatched it. I thought that was a really poor standard game from both sides that day.
“At Vale Park, Port Vale thoroughly deserved to win and could have scored more than the one they did. We didn’t perform on the day and it was disappointing because we had played well since Christmas, so that’s two performances we haven’t done ourselves justice. We will be looking to change that this weekend.
“It is no different than playing Exeter a few weeks back when we were second and they were top. It was a big crowd that day, the atmosphere was great and it was three points up for grabs.
He added: “It is the same this weekend, we know what it means to the fans and the bragging rights that come with winning but when you strip it back its three points, like it was against Exeter. We want the three points to keep us top of the league and we want our fans to have a smile on their faces on Saturday night.”