League One
Fleetwood0Port Vale0

Fleetwood Town 0-0 Port Vale

Michael Brown
Caretaker boss Michael Brown took charge of Port Vale when Bruno Ribeiro resigned in December

Port Vale were relegated to League Two despite drawing their final game of the season at Fleetwood Town, who had to settle for a play-off spot.

Needing to win and hope at least one other result went their way, Vale sat back for the first hour before a desperate finale, as it emerged they needed just one late goal to survive.

Anthony de Freitas went close for the visitors late on but fired just over.

And Vale's four-year stay in League One ended as they failed to find a winner.

Fleetwood, who had started the day with a slight chance of earning automatic promotion, slipped to fourth and will now play fifth-placed Bradford in the play-offs, as Scunthorpe won to finish third.

The Cod Army's hopes of pipping Bolton to second spot were dashed as Wanderers took control of their own game and defeated Peterborough, which appeared to give Vale hope at the other end of the table.

Michael Brown's side kicked off one point below 20th-placed Gillingham and two below 19th-placed Bury - who both failed to win.

A late winning goal for Vale would have kept them up, but despite a late rally, they managed just two shots on target.

Fleetwood went closest to scoring as both teams pushed for victory in the closing stages and Ashley Eastham had the ball in the net, only for his effort to be ruled out for offside.

Chris Eagles had arguably Vale's best chance, but his deflected, close-range effort was saved with around 15 minutes remaining.

Where did it go wrong for Vale?

Vale fans will lament a run of five straight defeats, without scoring a single goal, earlier in April, which significantly contributed to their relegation.

A surprise win at mid-table Walsall on Tuesday gave the Valiants a stay of execution until the final day, but a lack of goals in 2017 has ultimately been the downfall for Brown's side.

Vale managed just 18 league goals following the turn of the year and no individual Vale player netted 10 league goals all season.

Alex Jones finished the campaign as top scorer at Vale with nine league goals, despite his loan spell from Birmingham ending in January when he signed for Bradford City.

Former manager Bruno Ribeiro resigned as Vale boss on Boxing Day, saying the "project" was not working, and Brown was placed in caretaker charge but he was unable to arrest their slide during his temporary tenure.

Port Vale captain Ben Purkiss told BBC Radio Stoke:

"I don't think words can really sum up how we feel. That's the quietest I've ever known the dressing room after the game.

"It wasn't today that cost us, it's been throughout the whole season.

"You reflect on the day, we had opportunities. The game was so open in that second half, we were pushing forward, we had chances, they had chances.

"I actually thought our chances were probably the better of the chances in the game and we just couldn't get the goal."

Line-ups

Fleetwood

  • 21Cairns
  • 5Eastham
  • 12BolgerSubstituted forPondat 17'minutes
  • 37Davies
  • 2McLaughlinBooked at 6minsSubstituted forColeat 62'minutes
  • 34Dempsey
  • 18GlendonSubstituted forBrannaganat 74'minutes
  • 11Grant
  • 3BellBooked at 45mins
  • 22Hunter
  • 10Ball

Substitutes

  • 4Brannagan
  • 6Pond
  • 9Burns
  • 15Nirennold
  • 38Schwabl
  • 41Urwin
  • 44Cole

Port Vale

  • 38Fasan
  • 2PurkissBooked at 75mins
  • 4Streete
  • 24Smith
  • 19TanserSubstituted forCiciliaat 73'minutes
  • 12PughSubstituted forde Freitasat 22'minutes
  • 11Foley
  • 31ReevesBooked at 36mins
  • 44Eagles
  • 18TurnerBooked at 45mins
  • 10HooperSubstituted forKellyat 13'minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Mehmet
  • 7Kelly
  • 9Cicilia
  • 20Geraldo Rosa
  • 28de Freitas
  • 30Shalaj
  • 39Bikey Amougou
Referee:
Ross Joyce
Attendance:
4,733

Match Stats

Home TeamFleetwoodAway TeamPort Vale
Possession
Home60%
Away40%
Shots
Home14
Away7
Shots on Target
Home6
Away2
Corners
Home13
Away1
Fouls
Home6
Away16

Live Text

Match ends, Fleetwood Town 0, Port Vale 0.

Full Time

Second Half ends, Fleetwood Town 0, Port Vale 0.

Attempt saved. Bobby Grant (Fleetwood Town) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom left corner.

Nathan Pond (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Remie Streete (Port Vale).

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Anthony de Freitas.

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Nathan Smith.

Attempt blocked. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

Attempt missed. Anthony de Freitas (Port Vale) right footed shot from the left side of the box is close, but misses the top left corner.

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by William Reeves.

Attempt missed. Kyle Dempsey (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match Ashley Hunter (Fleetwood Town) because of an injury.

David Ball (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Sam Foley (Port Vale).

Attempt missed. Ashley Hunter (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

Attempt missed. Chris Eagles (Port Vale) right footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

Attempt saved. Chris Eagles (Port Vale) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Booking

Ben Purkiss (Port Vale) is shown the yellow card for a bad foul.

David Ball (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Ben Purkiss (Port Vale).

Substitution

Substitution, Fleetwood Town. Cameron Brannagan replaces George Glendon.

Substitution

Substitution, Port Vale. Rigino Cicilia replaces Scott Tanser.

Attempt missed. Nathan Pond (Fleetwood Town) header from the centre of the box is close, but misses to the left.

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Scott Tanser.

Attempt missed. Sam Foley (Port Vale) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Leonardo Fasan.

Attempt saved. Bobby Grant (Fleetwood Town) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Remie Streete.

Substitution

Substitution, Fleetwood Town. Devante Cole replaces Conor McLaughlin.

Conor McLaughlin (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Foul by Sam Kelly (Port Vale).

Corner, Port Vale. Conceded by Nathan Pond.

Corner, Fleetwood Town. Conceded by Ben Purkiss.

Ashley Hunter (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Dan Turner (Port Vale).

Attempt saved. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt saved. David Ball (Fleetwood Town) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

Attempt saved. Anthony de Freitas (Port Vale) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

George Glendon (Fleetwood Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

goal

As It Stood

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Sheff Utd4630106924745100
2Bolton4625111068363286
3Scunthorpe4624101280542682
4Fleetwood4623131064432182
5Bradford462019762431979
6Millwall462013136657973
7Southend4620121470531772
8Oxford Utd462091765521369
9Rochdale461912157162969
10Bristol Rovers461812166870-266
11Peterborough461711186262062
12MK Dons461613176058261
13Charlton461418146053760
14Walsall461416165158-758
15Wimbledon461318155255-357
16Northampton461411216073-1353
17Oldham461217173144-1353
18Shrewsbury461312214663-1751
19Bury461311226173-1250
20Gillingham461214205979-2050
21Port Vale461213214570-2549
22Swindon461111244466-2244
23Coventry46912253768-3139
24Chesterfield46910274378-3537
View full League One table

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