Darrell Clarke weighing up Port Vale options on contracts and Mansfield game



Port Vale boss Darrell Clarke is considering changes for Saturday’s final game of the season, at home to Mansfield, but says his priority remains to win the game.

Clarke, director of football David Flitcroft and the board are making decisions about which players to release and are expected to issue their retained list on Tuesday or Wednesday next week.

So, the Mansfield game represents a final chance to assess players in competitive action.

The manager is considering bringing in one or two players that haven’t featured heavily under him but says his starting point when he picks the team will be how to beat Mansfield.

He said: “I want to win the game. Yes, I want to look at one or two things…but win the game. So, the strengths and weaknesses of Mansfield come into play, not just getting people out there that need a game.

“So, it will be assessed as every game has been since I have been in the building.”

The majority of Vale’s squad are out of contract at the end of the season but several players have made their case for a new deal as the Vale have taken 25 points out of the last 30 available.

Their nine-game unbeaten run came to an end at Grimsby on Saturday when Mariners striker Matt Green scored the only goal of the game, after 32 minutes.

That saw the Vale drop a place to 13th, ten points off the play –offs and 16 clear of Grimsby and Southend who have been relegated.

Of the team that started at Grimsby on Saturday, Scott Brown, Shaun Brisley, Cristian Montano and Luke Joyce are out of contract.

Of the seven players who started on the bench, Tom Pope, Harry McKirdy, and Kurtis Guthrie are also due to become free agents at the end of the season.





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