Walsall boss Darrell Clarke is expecting Port Vale to provide a difficult test for his team and feels they would have reached the play-offs last campaign had the season not been curtailed.
The Saddlers will be aiming to stretch their winning run to four games when they take on the Valiants at the Banks’s Stadium on Saturday.
Clarke admitted that in any football game you need an element of fortune to go in your favour and hopes that his side can make their own luck against a team he believes will provide them one of the toughest challenges of the season.
“On their day, Port Vale are a very good team and would have made the play-offs last season, let’s make no bones about that,” said Clarke.
“They were the team on form flying up there catching the top seven. They’ve got a similar squad to that with some improvement so Port Vale are going to be one of our tougher tests so far this season.
“Any manager up and down the country, you need a bit of luck. No matter how you paper anything up, you need 10 or 15 per cent of luck to win football games.
“Can you make your own luck? Yes by having territory but you need that bit of rub of the green and I think we got that at Oldham, I didn’t think we defended well at all but other than that there have been a lot of games earlier in the season where we didn’t get that rub of the green.”
The Saddlers will go into the game full of confidence given they are on a five match unbeaten run.
One man in particular who is in great form is Elijah Adebayo. The striker has netted in each of his last three appearances and Clarke is hoping the 22-year-old can continue showing that consistency.
“He’s performing very well and over a consistent period of time now,” Clarke commented.
“We need to keep on Elijah and keep at him, that’s how he likes to be managed.
“He’s a great lad, really polite and he’s got himself in a situation where that development side of things is looking consistent and he’s adding goals to his game as well.”
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