The end result of kindness is that it draws people to you. This couldn’t be more true, but a fixture at a team not even on the map provided an opportunity for a change of fortune. The Rovers setup saw one change with Richard Chaplow coming in for Harry Forrester. Vale included Uche Ikpeazu, unpopular after his stint at Rovers last season.
The first half was certainly one to forget. Vale piled on the pressure and Rovers simply couldn’t deal with it. Ikpeazu used his physicality to his advantage, crumbling the defence, creating four ghosts of the old-ship HMS McCombe. In the tenth minute, the referee gave a penalty after a swing by Chaplow. However, Thorsten Stuckmann fantastically saved to keep Rovers in the game. This was followed by a string of excellent saves as the big German attempted to lead the team to that illustrious first win. But it wasn’t to be as Sam Foley gave Vale the lead just before half time.
The second half began with Curtis Main replacing Harry Middleton but almost instantly Ikpeazu scored Vale’s second. Rovers continued poorly and somehow had a shot on target in the 60th minute. This was as if a real goal had actually been scored, we were really that bad. The drab continued and Vale grabbed a third at the end through Byron Moore. The full time whistle was greeted with boos from the Rovers fans after a truly awful match which could’ve even been nine or ten nil.
by Kieran Smith