Yeovil Town went down to a poor 0-3 home defeat against Port Vale on Tuesday night, that slipped them further down the table towards the relegation zone. Two goals from Cristian Montano caused the damage, early on in each half, and sandwiched in the middle was a Connell Rawlinson as the Valiants breezed to victory in a one-sided contest. That defeat was watched by just 2,174 spectators - once again beating the lowest crowd for a Football League match at Huish Park crowd, as they ended the evening in 19th place, just five points off the bottom two.
The Glovers went into the match making two changes to the eleven that lined up at Macclesfield Town. Adel Gafaiti made his debut in that match, but disappeared off the teamsheet entirely as Carl Dickinson came back into the side, meaning the back four was reshuffled. Then Yoann Arquin was taken out of the side to allow for an extra midfielder in Rhys Browne and therefore a formation change. Whether it was a 4-3-3 or a 4-5-1 or even a 4-2-3-1 with Sessi D'Almeida and Alex Pattison sitting behind Jake Gray, was up for debate, but the one thing that was certain was that Francois Zoko was the main striker in that line-up.
Right from the start, Yeovil seemed to have the jitters. Tom James, Bevis Mugabi and Alex Pattison all gave the ball away during the opening ten minutes, whilst Stuart Nelson was fortunate that his dropped cross landed without a Port Vale player being able to react to the opportunity. No surprise then, that Port Vale got themselves an early lead. Manny Oyeleke got room down the flank, and pulled the ball back for Cristian Montano to score with just 13 minutes on the clock. 0-1 down.
Port Vale's dominance continued as Nathan Smith (no, not that one) headed over a Luke Hannant cross. Then Antony Kay let fly from 30 yards, and by the look of his despairing dive, Stuart Nelson was struggling to cover it, as it went just wide of the post. Yeovil had achieved next to nothing, with a Jake Gray shot over the bar acting as the only attacking intent that they'd shown. At the other end, it was mostly Port Vale, with Leon Legge getting free from a corner to head just wide of the post in a crowded goalmouth.
Overall, Yeovil's team was a mile off their game, and the new formation appeared to be crowding itself out in midfield. Jake Gray became the early fall-guy as he made way for Alefe Santos with the same midfield formation being used, as Santos provided the most attacking outlet of the five.
Not that it made any difference. Port Vale increased their lead just after the half hour mark. A Tom Conlon corner was headed home by Connell Rawlinson, with very little marking evident inside the box. 0-2 down, and even this early in the game, the Huish Park crowd was making their feelings known, loudly booing their side's performance on the night. That Francois Zoko was booked for something he did as a reaction to that goal, showed how the players' frustrations were boiling over.
Yeovil created a couple of chances in the lead-up to half time, with Wes McDonald's shot from the edge of the box forcing Scott Brown to push over his crossbar for a corner. McDonald again shot over the bar from the resultant set piece. But despite that brief attempt to get back into the game, Port Vale almost stole a third before the halftime whistle blew, with Manny Oyeleke's angled cross/shot having to be cleared off the line by Tom James. It was a sorry looking 45 minutes and a deserved scoreline as the sparse crowd booed at the whistle.
Bevis Mugabi had fallen on his arm or shoulder during the first period, and he was replaced at the break by Enes Mahmoutovic. Whatever instructions were dished out during the break mattered little as it took just three minutes for Vale to extend their lead, with Luke Hannant's cross finding an unmarked Cristian Montano, who converted. 0-3 down and as easy as you like for the Valiants.
Tom Pope saw a header from a corner saved by Stuart Nelson, then almost immediately Pope headed wide, as the marking inside the box continued to go astray. Yeovil's final roll of the dice was to take off Sessi D'Almeida and replace him with Jordan Green, with the decision to withdraw the Benin international being greeted by a loud chant of 'You don't know what you're doing' aimed at beleagured manager Darren Way, who was also booed on the couple of occasions he picked up the ball inside his own technical area.
Port Vale's chances continued to come, with Leon Legge heading wide from a Luke Hannant free kick. Hannant then had a shot deflected out for a corner, leading to Legge almost scoring from the set-piece - bodies on the goal line managed to block the ball landing in the back of the net. All Yeovil could muster was a couple of Rhys Browne shots that were easily saved, as they ran out of time with their worst performance of the season, and one that slips them down to 19th in the table. Watched in front of a pitifully small crowd, alarm bells should be ringing at Huish Park. But are they?
Link: 2018-19 Latest League Two Table.
Final Score: Yeovil Town 0 Port Vale 3.
Scorers: Cristian Montano (0-1, 13 mins), Connell Rawlinson (0-2, 31 mins), Cristian Montano (0-3, 48 mins)
1. Stuart Nelson
23. Tom James 5. Bevis Mugabi 4. Gary Warren (Capt) 3. Carl Dickinson
20. Sessi D'Almeida 17. Alex Pattison
7. Rhys Browne 10. Jake Gray 21. Wes McDonald
13. Francois Zoko
31. Tommy Scott (GK) 8. Omari Patrick 11. Jordan Green (63 mins for Sessi D'Almeida) 15. Gabriel Rogers 18. Yoann Arquin 29. Enes Mahmutovic (46 mins for Bevis Mugabi) 30. Alefe Santos (26 mins for Jake Gray)
1 Scott Brown
13 Connell Rawlinson 15 Nathan Smith 5 Leon Legge 21 Theo Vassell
11 Luke Hannant 6 Antony Kay 8 Manny Oyeleke 22 Tom Conlon 3 Cristian Montaņo
9 Tom Pope
2 James Gibbons 4 Luke Joyce (76 mins for Manny Oyeleke) 12 Sam Hornby 14 Scott Quigley 17 Idris Kanu 19 Louis Dodds (71 mins for Cristian Montano) 24 Ben Whitfield
Yeovil Bookings: Francois Zoko (dissent, 33 mins), Alefe Santos (foul, 39 mins), Alex Pattison (diving, 89 mins)
Port Vale Bookings: Cristian Montano (foul, 54 mins), Theo Vassell (foul, 60 mins), Tom Pope (blocking free kick, 80 mins)
Yeovil Match Statistics: Possession: 56%; Shots: 8; Shots On Target: 3; Corners: 4; Fouls: 12.
Port Vale Match Statistics: Possession: 44%; Shots: 17; Shots On Target: 7; Corners: 7; Fouls: 11.
Referee: Lee Collins (Surrey). Assistants: Mark Pottage (Dorset) and Justin Amey (Dorset). Fourth Official: Matthew Lee (West Sussex).
Attendance: 2,174 (with 113 Port Vale supporters).
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