Chris Lines speaks of “buzz” at Port Vale under Robert Page

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Port Vale midfielder Chris Lines has come out in favour of caretaker manager Robert Page’s fresh approach at the club.

Lines, 28, is into his second season at the club and said he was pleased with the impact made by Micky Adams’ replacement.

The midfielder said Page is a tactician and spoke of a “buzz” about Vale Park.

He said: “It’s completely different, we’re doing a lot more with studying the game, studying opposition, I think that’s shown by how well we’ve defended against Bradford, Barnsley and Fleetwood.

“On Thursdays and Fridays before games, Page’s working on things on the training ground, which is stuff we haven’t done before –  it’s what you have to do because it’s a modern game.

“It’s not just about going out there and kicking a ball, there’s more about tactics.”

“One thing I’ve noticed since he’s been in charge is a lot more attention to detail and I think, personally for me and speaking to the lads, we’re enjoying it and I think that’s shown in our performances.

“There’s a whole kind of new buzz about the place.”

Lines also praised Page’s work on retaining possession, an art he felt was lacking in some games under the old management: “We want to get on the ball and pass it, if we’re hitting long balls every two minutes we’re going to be looking over our heads and there’s not much point the midfield being on the pitch.

“At certain times in the games two or three weeks ago, that was what was happening.

“Page’s said look I don’t want all these long balls going forward, I want us playing through you and Michael O’Connor.”

Lines, a former Bristol Rovers midfielder, has been unable to match his career high goal tally of 11 in one season whilst at Vale Park – a feat he achieved for Rovers in 2010.

He said the Valiants’ new style of play will mean a return to the goals for him.

He added: “I used to get six, seven a season easily, now I’m on penalties it gives me a chance as long as I stick them away, but having that freedom to express yourself under Page is important and you can see that in the goals we’ve scored it’s people having the freedom to express themselves.

“Before it was perhaps get it wide, cross it in and hope Tom Pope heads it in, and that got too predictable, whereas now we’re passing it round teams and they’re not expecting that from Port Vale.”

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