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23 February 2019 Venue Jonny-Rocks Stadium Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League Two

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Match Previews

Match pack: Port Vale (H)

22 February 2019

The Robins are eyeing a fourth home win on the bounce in another massive game on Saturday when Port Vale are the visitors to the Jonny-Rocks Stadium (kick-off: 3pm).

Tuesday’s win over Cambridge United has set Cheltenham up nicely for the visit of Port Vale this weekend, and three points for Michael Duff’s side will provide another huge lift in the quest to secure League Two status for another season.

The visitors will provide difficult opposition though. They’re desperate to claw themselves away from the bottom two themselves and are keen to secure a first win under their new management team.

It’s half-term and a big crowd is needed to give the Robins the extra edge. Buy your tickets now online or on the day at the turnstiles and help play your part in another vital home fixture.

Team news

Luke Varney (hamstring) and Jordan Tillson (groin) are fitness doubts while Alex Addai and Nigel Atangana are definitely out.

Forward Tyrone Barnett is fighting for fitness and could face his old club, while Johnny Mullins played 60 minutes in the reserve team win over Forest Green on Tuesday and Sean Long could be involved in the matchday squad again.

Watch Michael Duff’s pre-match press conference looking ahead to the game:

Opposition

Saturday’s opponents travel to Gloucestershire desperate to find a way back into form having taken just one point out of a possible 18 from their last six games. They recently appointed former Macclesfield boss John Askey as manager, with ex-Robins coach Dave Kevan as his assistant, but it has been a tricky start for Askey having lost his first three games.

They’ll therefore be determined to get something from Saturday’s tie and occupy 21st place after a loss to Tranmere on Tuesday at Vale Park. Their last win came at Crawley in mid-January.

With captain Tom Pope in attack they carry a goal threat, and with fellow attackers Ricky Miller, Ben Whitfield, Cristian Montano and Cardiff City loan youngster Mark Harris, who spent the first half of this season on loan at Newport County, they will be keen to get the ball forward into the attacking third.

Their experienced heads come through the likes of David Worrall and Antony Kay – who scored the last gasp equaliser in stoppage time at Vale Park when the Robins and Vale last clashed.

There’s one recognisable former Robin in their squad. Goalkeeper Scott Brown (pictured below) had two spells at Cheltenham, with his first lasting for nearly a decade and his second a lengthy loan spell from Wycombe Wanderers in the 2016-17 campaign.

Last time we met

A chilly and windy meeting back in December saw Nigel Atangana’s 90th minute goal, which looked all but set to be the winner, ruled out deep into stoppage time by an Antony Kay equaliser to deny Michael Duff’s men all three points at Vale Park.

Cheltenham were aiming to follow up a last gasp home win over Grimsby the week before, but saw Cristian Montano’s well-worked opener put Vale in front after just 13 minutes.

Sam Jones, on loan from Shrewsbury, levelled as he followed up Ryan Broom’s shot which had been saved by Scott Brown, and then late in the second period Atangana stroked home accurately to give Cheltenham a late lead that all but looked to make it two late wins in a row.

Port Vale had other ideas though and a set piece in stoppage time was headed in by experienced midfield man Kay to ensure the spoils were shared.

Watch back the highlights from that fixture earlier in the season:

Tickets

You can buy online for Saturday’s game by clicking here. Tickets are also available to buy on the turnstiles when they open at 1.30pm.

The ticket office is open before kick-off and after the game for fans wanting to buy tickets for upcoming home matches and away travel for next week’s trip to Mansfield. The club shop is also open with a range of CTFC merchandise on sale.

Coverage

Follow @CTFCofficial on Twitter for team news and match updates. You can also check out team news and goal updates on the club’s Facebook page. After the game visit the club website to see the reaction to the result and read a match report looking back on the 90 minutes.

Listen to match commentary via iFollow or on BBC Radio Gloucestershire.

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Match Reports

Full-time: Robins 1-0 Port Vale - highlights & report

23 February 2019

Leading goalscorer Luke Varney’s tenth goal of the season was enough to earn Cheltenham Town an important victory over Port Vale at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium.

A set-piece in the first half was brilliantly worked in by defender Chris Hussey, and Varney was on hand to power the ball past Scott Brown in the Vale goal, in a carbon copy of the one they combined for at Notts County. 

The second half had few chances to speak of, but Cheltenham survived the late Vale aerial onslaught to increase the gap between them and the relegation zone to 11 points and registered a fourth consecutive home win for the first time since April 2013. 

Cheltenham boss Michael Duff made one change to the side that defeated Cambridge United 2-0 on Tuesday night, as topscorer Luke Varney came back into the side after a hamstring injury to replace Rakish Bingham.

The Robins started the game at a quick pace, and only a fantastic stop from Vale, and former Cheltenham Town stopper Scott Brown kept striker Luke Varney from adding to his tally for the season after some great work by Ryan Broom down the right flank.

Valiants midfielder Ben Whitfield was the first to test Scott Flinders – who had to contend with the sunshine in his eyeline in the first half – after Conor Thomas’ loose pass was intercepted by Whitfield, but his fierce drive was well gathered by Flinders after originally spilling the effort.

David Worrall did have the ball in the net for the visitors after Cristian Montano got the better of defenders Broom and Charlie Raglan on the byline, but Worrall failed to stay onside for the defender’s cutback.

Cheltenham continued to exploit Vale down the right wing, and Broom was at it again turning Montano inside and out before picking out Jacob Maddox in space in the area, but his effort was deflected out for a corner.

From the resulting corner, the Robins made their dominance count after a set-piece routine was worked to perfection by Hussey as he drilled a low ball into the area and Varney peeled off his marker before drilling a low effort past Brown in the Vale goal.

The forward didn’t have to wait long for another chance to come around and it was Broom again causing issues down the right-hand side after he set the ball back for Kevin Dawson, who put a good curling cross into the path of Varney, but the striker failed to direct his header on goal.

Vale’s left-back Montano, however, managed to beat the Robins press to earn the visitors’ best chance of the half when some good build-up play down Vale’s right wing resulted in a dangerous cross flying across the face of Cheltenham’s six-yard box, but Montano’s glancing header went inches wide of the post.

Cheltenham started the second forty-five in similar fashion to the first, and another Hussey delivery was begging to be put in after he’d earned a free-kick on the left wing, but Varney failed to double his tally for the game – despite escaping the attentions of his marker – as he looped his volley over.

But it was a dogged battle in the middle of the pitch for much of the second period, as the Robins looked to repel the Vale press that was aided by the introduction of Ricky Miller and Tom Conlon midway through the half.

The Robins defence stood firm to the Valiants response, with captain Ben Tozer doing especially well to nick the ball out of frontman Tom Pope’s path before he could get a shot away.

There weren’t many chances for the Robins towards the end of the game and it was all hands to the defensive effort as Cheltenham ensured there weren’t any late scares in the dying embers of the game, as they secured yet another vital victory.

ROBINS: Flinders, Broom, Raglan, Tozer, Boyle, Hussey, Thomas, Dawson, Maddox (Clements 78’), Waters (Tillson 88’), Varney (Barnett 84’). Subs not used: Lovett (Gk), Forster, Bingham, Pring.

PORT VALE: Brown (Gk), Gibbons, Montano (Miller 73’), Legge, Kay, Worrall (Hannant 83’), Oyeleke (Conlon 67’), Pope, Crookes, Smith, Whitfield. Subs not used: Hornby (Gk), Harris, Clark, Howkins.

REFEREE: P. Wright

ATTENDANCE: 3,079 (291 away)

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Ticket News

Tickets: Robins get set for Port Vale

21 February 2019

The Robins take on Port Vale at the Jonny-Rocks Stadium on Saturday looking to follow up Tuesday's excellent win over Cambridge United.

Tickets are on sale right now for the clash with Vale as Michael Duff's side target a fourth consecutive home win in League Two.

Kick-off is at 3pm and tickets are on sale right now for the game, which sees the 21st place Valiants head to Gloucestershire.

A 2-0 win in midweek has pushed Cheltenham nine points clear of the drop zone, and Saturday represents another great opportunity to move further up the table with a good performance.

It's half term week and the team need another big Jonny-Rocks Stadium crowd to help get them over the line.

Buy tickets online in advance at any time online here. The ticket office is also open today up till 3pm, and again on Friday between 10am and 3pm.

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