11 March 2023

Darrell Clarke pleased with Port Vale performance despite draw at Fleetwood

11 March 2023

Boss Darrell Clarke hailed a “tremendous” performance from his Port Vale players despite conceding a late equaliser in the 1-1 draw at Fleetwood.

The Valiants dominated and led through Matty Taylor’s 57th-minute goal but were denied victory by Jack Marriott, who bundled in an equaliser – his first goal for the Cod Army – seven minutes from time.

Despite his disappointment, Clarke admitted he was happy enough with his side’s efforts.

He said: “I’m pleased with the performance, I thought the boys were tremendous. We just have to finish our chances. We had a couple of great chances in the game.

“We’re frustrated we’ve conceded another goal from a set piece but the effort, commitment and some of the quality at times was very good, so we take the point.

“It was a really high-tempo, heated game. I thought we dominated quite large periods of the game to be honest with you, with the ball and without it.

“It just wasn’t to be for the three points. But still I thought it was a good performance.

“Matty Taylor got his goal and, knowing him as I do, he’ll be frustrated. He could have got two or three there, to be honest with you, but he’s worked hard for the team.

“He does know where the back of the net is. He’ll be frustrated but pleased to get himself off the mark.

“The performance was a good one and that’s for four or five games where the performances have been pretty consistent. We have to consider that as two points dropped but I know those results will come the longer we maintain that performance level.”

Fleetwood manager Scott Brown saw his side fight back for a point which ended a three-match losing run.

He said: “It’s been a long time for the lads to go Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday, Tuesday.

“You can see that they’ve lost a little bit of energy but I tell you what, they work extremely hard and they kept going to the 97th minute.

“They were tired, they were cramping up, it was extremely hard.

“It’s disappointing the way we played, we didn’t play as well as we could have, but at the end of the day after that six-week period, we’re in a miles better position. So we’ve got to look at that.

“We’ve changed, chopped and changed our formation as well. So, in the next couple of weeks we can start to work on shape, pressing, understanding of getting on the ball as well but also enjoy a little bit of fun as well.

“I’m delighted for Jack (Marriott). He could have had two there but he’s a goalscorer, he wants to score goals and you can see it’ll be a weight off his shoulders for sure.

“He’s done extremely well since coming in, he’s worked his socks off and for us to play as a lone striker sometimes that’s what you’ve got to do. He’s got off the mark now and hopefully he can kick on.”

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