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Match Reports

Strong U's Pick Up Vale Victory

McGreal's men move into top six

11 August 2018

An excellent all round performance gave the U's all three points on Saturday to continue their positive start to the season.

A strong first quarter with two top class goals set the tone for the day and the U's didn't drop their quality from there as they secured a home win on a sunny afternoon.

It sets them up nicely for two away days next week as the season gets into its stride.

The U’s had an early sight of goal when Nouble seized on a defensive mistake, but Rawlinson recovered well to block his eventual shot.

But they got their noses in front after eight minutes, thanks to Courtney Senior. He wriggled past two tackles, and then exchanged a one two with Dickenson on the edge of the box before finishing calmly past Brown.

The U’s were good value for their lead but Port Vale signalled their intent to be in the game when first Worrall fired over from distance, before Pope forced a save out of Barnes at the far post from a long cross.

The U’s doubled their advantage midway through the half with more great football. It was Jackson on the move this time and he swapped passes with Szmodics before slotting home.

Vale were still pressing, though, and whilst Miller’s free kick just after the half hour didn’t test Barnes, they were a threat on occasion.

Oyeleke fired a free kick well over not long after, before Dickenson went a bit closer with a free kick that was won by another scintillating run by Senior.

The U’s took their lead into the break, but Vale had a good chance straight after the interval, that saw Hannant bend a shot just wide.

The home side responded in kind, with Nouble worked the ball well on the edge of the box before firing a dipping shot just over.

And the U’s front man should have made it three on 51 minutes when Szmodics unselfishly squared it with Nouble in acres of space, but his first time effort was well over the bar.

Nouble was right in the thick of it and, after good persistence from Szmodics and Senior, his latest effort was deflected over.

Dickenson was next to fire just wide, as the U’s pressed for a third.

Nouble’s race was run midway through the second half, as Mikael Mandron came on for the remaining time.

And the U’s made their second change with fifteen left, as Aaron Collins replaced Vincent-Young.

Barnes saved well from Legge’s shot from a Vale free kick, as Vale started to see a bit more of the ball in search for a way back into the game.

The U’s almost got a third with eight minutes to go as excellent work from Szmodics saw him put a defender on his backside before sending over a low cross that Mandron could only put wide on the stretch.

Then Collins was the next to get a shot off, firing in a low left footed effort that Brown saved excellently.

But although the U's couldn't extend their advantage, they ensured that Barnes was well protected for the remainder of the game to secure a valuable three points.

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