Ready For The Valiants

WITH Port Vale having racked up six goals against npower League 2 title-fancies Rotherham last weekend and Argyle at their parsimonious best in achieving a 0-0 draw at Torquay...

...Saturday’s Home Park clash has something of an Irresistible Force v Unmovable Object clash look to it.

Four of Vale’s goals came from Tom Pope, who also scored the winner last time the Pilgrims played the Potteries’ side, but Argyle manager Carl Fletcher knows his opponents’ fine start to the season is down to much more than one man.

“They are a good side,” he said. “They’ve got some good players at this level. So we have to be well prepared for the game and make sure we give our players the best opportunity to do well, by working on their strengths and weaknesses and working on ours as well.

“We don’t concentrate on one individual. We’ve got to be weary of all threats and dangers.”

Argyle’s squad at Plainmoor was bereft of forwards Rhys Griffiths, Paris Cowan-Hall and Nick Chadwick, as well as goalkeeper Rene Gilmartin and midfielder Jamie Lowry, but Fletch is relatively unconcerned by their absence.

“That’s why you have a squad of players,” he said. “You have everyone chipping in throughout the season.

“You’re going to have use everyone on your squad, whether it for injuries or suspensions or different people’s form.

“That’s just the way it is. You have to deal with it as it comes up. It happens to clubs all over the country.”

One way Argyle have dealt with the situation is by borrowing striker Guy Madjo from Aldershot.

The Cameroonian Under-23 international, who had a short, but successful, similar spell with Vale last season, joined up with his new team-mates in the wee small hours of the day of the Torquay match.

The suddenness of the move, and distance involved, limited his playing time at Plainmoor, and Fletch is happy he has now had a week to work with the 28-year-old.

“He got in his car and came right down last week,” he said. “That’s great for us – to see that he wanted to be involved with the team and in the game.

“It takes time to settle down. It will be good for him to have got into his place where he is staying, get into the training, getting to meet the lads and getting to know one another.

“He’s played games at this level, and scored goals at this level. He knows the players, knows the league, knows what to expect.

“He is a great asset for us at this time, when have a few injuries, and a good option for us when selecting the side on Saturday.”