Thursday, 14 February 2013

Two minutes with… Port Vale

Last weekend saw the league leaders Port Vale visit Underhill. Vale fan Dan gives his thoughts in this instalment of ‘Two minutes with…’
Had you been to Underhill before?
Yes, this was my fifth visit to Underhill since we were relegated to League Two.
How did you get to the game?
I travelled down on a combination of the train and underground with three others
The match
Whereabouts in the ground did you sit/stand?
I stood in the away terrace, relatively close to the home supporters.
What did you make of the game?
In all honesty, I thought it was a pretty drab affair with very few clear-cut opportunities. It was one of the poorest performances from our point of view all season. Barnet passed the ball around really well but lacked an end product in the final third of the pitch.
Who (from either side) do you think deserved to be man of the match?
Without question, Edgar Davids and John Oster were outstanding in the middle of the pitch, and totally dictated play in that area. A special mention to Andy Iro, who I also thought was very impressive and helped to stop top goalscorer Tom Pope from having any sort of effect.
Was the score line a fair reflection on the game?
I think it was, in fairness. Barnet were the better side but for all their great passing play and build-up, they didn't really test our goalkeeper too much and ironically, it was Vale that had the best opportunity of the game as Tom Pope saw a header come back off the post.
Who do you play next, and how do you think you’ll get on?
Our next fixture is on Saturday where we play Morecambe at home. I should be really confident of a convincing home win but Morecambe are just the type of side to come to Vale Park and catch us with a sucker punch and take a 0-2 victory. I still think we'll win though.
Cost of match day ticket
I think the majority of match day tickets in this division are an awful price. However, a discounted price of £13 wasn't too bad for Saturday's game but I still think every club in League Two should have a re-think as to what they are charging for fourth division football ––– 8/10
Purchases made at ground
I have taken it upon myself to rename the burgers at Underhill as 'Death Burgers' purely because they are not fit to be served anywhere, in my opinion. They consisted of a stale bun and a half-cooked, watery burger and a freezing cold cheese slice. Not good at all. However, no problem with drinks whatsoever and the programme is always an enjoyable read ––– 6/10
––– 7/10
Quality of football
I thought that there were a few glimpses of really fluid football played on Saturday, but mainly from The Bees. We struggled on the narrow Underhill pitch and were out-fought and out-ran thanks to Barnet's game plan of sticking an extra body in midfield with one up front ––– 6/10
Overall experience
I enjoyed the day as Barnet has been a favourite away day of mine for several seasons now. The train journeys were a bit problematic, but that isn't anything to do with the club. It's a great little ground with a lot of character, good acoustics, but it loses marks for its awful food and the lack of atmosphere from both sets of supporters on the day itself; coupled with a drab 0-0 scoreline and no real exciting moments. Going to miss Underhill ––– 7/10
Total ––– 34/50

And you can follow Dan on Twitter @DanPhillipsPVFC

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