Now is our time: Just one more big performance please, lads

Adam Yates, Tom Pope and Lee Hughes show their passion.

Adam Yates, Tom Pope and Lee Hughes show their passion.

These are the moments you live for as a football fan. The reason that people care so much.

There will be tension tomorrow. There may well be tears before bedtime: Hopefully tears of joy.

But above all there will be a passion built of a momentum that has been growing since that opening day victory against Barnet.

So much hinges on this game: If the Burton game was huge then this is colossal.

A victory would almost certainly see us promoted given our astonishing goal difference.

That achievement would surely rank among English football’s greatest comebacks – a testament to Port Vale’s fans, its players, the coaching staff and the club’s new owners.

I can say now that there was a moment, a couple of days before Vale went into administration, when I honestly didn’t know whether or not we’d have a football club to support in 2013.

I wondered if perhaps in forcing out the discredited board of directors who had brought the Vale to its knees we had also doomed the club. That’s how close we came to oblivion.

It was, in some respects, a huge gamble but one that many of us felt was essential in order for Vale to have any kind of future.

As a result our club started the season in administration – with players and staff going unpaid for a time.

Indeed, some players turned their back on Port Vale precisely because its survival and, therefore, their financial future could not be guaranteed.

I remember supporters turning up to clean the stadium, do some painting and prepare Vale Park for the new season.

I recall the bucket collections, the sale of t-shirts and mugs by the Supporters’ Club and the umpteen meetings to try to help the Vale in any way possible.

I will never forget the pride felt by so many on the day the Sproson statue was finally unveiled.

Amid all the furore Micky Adams, his staff and players have been quietly going about their business.

Against the odds, with a small budget at the beginning of the season, they have somehow battled their way into the promotion places and now history awaits.

They deserve enormous credit for their performances thus far and all we ask is that tomorrow, once again, they make us proud.

One more big performance, perhaps blessed with a goal or two from the Sneyd Green Pontiff, will be the icing on the cake of a fabulous season.

I believe.

For all the latest Port Vale news, views and pictures pick up a copy of The Sentinel. The Weekend Sentinel on Saturday includes The Green ‘Un sports paper with extensive Vale coverage.

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