Spartans match reaction: Ando ready to take Vale on a journey

The performance in drawing with Spartans was “terrific” but still merely an indication of the direction in which the club is moving in.

That’s the view of Chris Anderson, who was pleased with the display against his old club. However he wants competing with the higher profile clubs in the league to become the norm.

He said: “That was as good as we’ve played all season but I’m determined to change the DNA of this club and challenge our group to have the belief when coming to places like Spartans.

“Both teams were missing a few players but having said that I thought our team display was terrific.”

Despite falling behind to the league’s third placed side, Vale fought back and equalised through a well-taken volley by Tommy Patterson. The lead was ours nine minutes into the second half when Jason Stevens scored his fifth in three games from a free kick, but Spartans sub Jonny Grotlin secured the draw with only nine minutes remaining.

“It was great to see young Tommy Patterson score a superb goal and that will give him more confidence as he continues to grow.

“We have now scored eight goals in three games which is impressive by anybody’s standards. Our goal has always been to improve as a team and with a stronger squad now there’s no excuses for us not to do just that”, added Anderson.

Having come through two tough games against Cumbernauld Colts and Spartans with a win and a draw, Vale now have a run in of eight matches which could be viewed upon as winnable. They will though have to remain focused if they are to add to the three game unbeaten run, with the competitiveness of the Lowland League evident. They need look no further than their eight game winless streak for a reminder of how readily things can slip.

The players will also have the added motivation of trying to stay on the manager’s good side as plans for the future begin to take shape. The desire to become a consistent top end of the table side will require foresight and constant planning, and Anderson explained that the players will have to prove to him that they can fit into his lofty plans.

“As we move to the last part of season I will challenge the players to show they want to be a part of our journey next season. We want ambitious players and players with high standards. It’s now up to them to perform like we know they can”, he said.