Port Vale’s John Askey confirms interest in Nottingham Forest and Leicester City players



John Askey has confirmed he would like to bring Jake Taylor and Mitch Clark back to Port Vale next season.

Nottingham Forest midfielder Taylor and Leicester City full back Clark both impressed on loan at Vale this past season but have returned to their parent clubs now League Two sides have agreed to end the campaign.

Askey would like the players, both 21, to be part of his squad next season but says, if they are loaned out, Vale could face competition from clubs in a higher division. 

Taylor scored seven goals in 25 games after joining the Vale in August, initially on a half-season loan. Vale tried to sign him permanently in the January transfer window but had two offers rejected by Forest who instead gave the youngster a new contract to keep him until the summer of 2021.

His campaign was cut short by a knee injury in January, but he had thrived in Askey’s 4-3-3 system, playing an attacking midfield role.

Clark did well at Vale in the 2018/19 campaign on a season-long loan from Aston Villa. Vale then tried to sign him in the summer of 2019 but he instead joined Leicester City’s under-23s, signing a three-year deal on a free transfer.

But he returned to the Vale on loan at the end of January and did well in four games, although he had to serve a three-game ban for being sent off in the win at Forest Green. 

Like Taylor, he did enough for the manager to include him in his targets for next season.

Askey said: “Jake came in and did really well for a spell and got vital goals. It was a shame he got injured when he did, but others came in and replaced him and we didn’t miss him when he was out injured. That is full credit to the others.

“Then Mitch came in for that short spell and, again, he looked really good. He looked as though he had pushed on from the previous year.

“I was disappointed when he got sent off but I think both of them showed they fitted in straight away and did really well for us, as a lot of the players have done.

“It would be nice if we could get them back next season but, with them doing well for us, there might be clubs from higher leagues interested in them. If not then you would hope, of any of the clubs in League Two, they would come back to us.

“I think everybody can see they have good quality and fitted in well for the team as well.”

League Two clubs are extremely unlikely to make new signings while there is uncertainty about when next season can start. But Vale have made offers to seven of this past season’s squad whose deals are due to run out on June 30.

David Amoo, Rhys Browne, Shaun Brisley, Tom Conlon, Mark Cullen, Cristian Montano and Nathan Smith have all been offered new deals. 





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