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Kick off 15:00 (UK)

01 April 2023 Venue Vale Park Attendance

Kick off 15:00 (UK)

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English Football League - League One

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Match Previews

Match Preview: Valiants vs U's

30 March 2023

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Cambridge United return to action in Sky Bet League One on Saturday afternoon when they make the trip up to Burslem to take on Port Vale...

Following a two-week hiatus, Mark Bonner’s men are aiming to shatter their winless streak on the road and reduce their current gap from safety as they endeavour to take the fight to the wire.

How to Watch

The U’s have been given 700 unallocated seated tickets for Saturday’s encounter in Staffordshire, which kicks off at 3pm. Supporters who wish to join us can buy their tickets for the match online at or over the phone by calling 01223 566500 – advance sales are available until 9pm on 30/03. Three away credits will be allocated for this fixture.

Tickets are priced at £24 for Adults (22-61), £19 for Seniors (62+), £16 for Young Adults (18-21), £12 for Young Teens (13-17) and Under 13s can get in for free. Tickets will be available for fans to buy on the day, but they must be purchased online via

Overseas fans can stream the game live with an iFollow Match Pass. Match Passes cost £10 and are available to purchase by clicking here. Elsewhere, domestic supporters who can’t make it to Vale Park can listen to live match commentary on iFollow

Opposition Focus

After their formation in 1876, Vale fluctuated between the Football League and Midland League after a sticky patch almost forced them into oblivion. With time, they continued to add to a sizeable trophy cabinet, which now reads at four promotions from the third tier, six from the fourth and two EFL trophies, which were won in 1993 and 2001. Since the turn of the millennium, the Valiants have yo-yoed between the two divisions, but the appointment of Darrell Clarke last year was an inspired one as he guided the side to play-off triumph at the fifth attempt. Going from strength to strength, a creditable first campaign back could be topped off with safety in the coming weeks.

Going steady, the Valiants continued to clock the points in the opening months, although in quite an inconsistent fashion as they registered two wins, a draw and three defeats in their first half a dozen. An unbeaten run of three games in early September was cancelled out by consecutive defeats to Peterborough United and Sheffield Wednesday, but they responded emphatically with the solitary loss in six – impressively kick-started by a 1-2 win at Derby County. Heading into Boxing Day, three wins and clean sheets in four and a 1-3 triumph against Forest Green Rovers strengthened a potential top 10 bid, but one win in two months caused a rut which has recently started to amend courtesy of five points in their previous four. Although not out of the woods, 16th position and a ten-point advantage from the drop makes for very satisfactory reading.

Deploying a 3-5-2 formation which has a blend of experience and potential, 23-year-old Aidan Stone has donned the sticks of late and has been protected by long-serving colossus Nathan Smith, who has adjusted to League One life seamlessly, popping up with three goals. He’s been guiding the promising Samson Robinson and Aaron Donnelly, 21 and 19 respectively, who are growing by the minute. Pivotal to their success, wing-backs Mal Benning and David Worrall have the know-how to create and are just as tricky defensively. Tom Conlon is a mainstay in the middle of the park and could be joined with Funso Ojo and Tom Pett as they aim to feed proven talisman Matt Taylor and Ellis Harrison, who recently reached double digits for the campaign. 

Form Guide

Port Vale: LWDLD

Cambridge United: LLDLL

United’s Approach

Feeling a sense of rejuvenation following a two-week break, a well-rested Cambridge plot to showcase an immediate response from their last outing.

Staged in CB5, a slow start proved costly a fortnight ago as Charlton Athletic held on for a 1-2 victory. Instinctive finishes from starlets Miles Leaburn and Jesurun Rak-Sakyi put the Addicks in cruise control, but a change in system reignited the U’s spirits after the break. Lloyd Jones’ consolation raised hopes, but they were unable to claim a point despite endeavour.

Encouraged by the second half but demanding more over a 90-minute spell, Bonner said to the press: “We had a real thrust about the game and might have been able to turn something but couldn’t find the quality. And in the first half they were too good for us, too athletic for us and moved the ball too well. We couldn’t quite get our shape right to contain them.”

Winless in six, United are languishing in 23rd with a seven-point gap from safety and an inferior goal difference. One consolation is that the three sides above them are also without victory in that period too. With nine challenging games to go, the task is to claw back-to-back successes for the first time since September, reduce the gap and give the side a fighting chance.

In preparation for the match, Bonner admitted: “When you go through a tough spell like we’ve had, it can be difficult all the time, trying to put a brave on… it’s harder to maintain that when results are going as they are so sometimes getting awa from each other is important.

“We had two extra days to be able to do that and that in itself can create a little bit of a spark and a bit of a freshness… hopefully that’s what we have going into this run of games because we’ll certainly need energy.”

In regards to team news, Liam O’Neil has picked up a slight hamstring problem, while Harvey Knibbs and Joe Ironside will need to be assessed. Elsewhere, it was hinted that George Thomas and Fejiri Okenabirhie may still have a part to play in the run-in as they up their recoveries.


Port Vale Wins: 12

Cambridge United Wins: 9

Draws: 2

Down Memory Lane

United will do everything in their power to ensure the Valiants don’t register a league double following the slender 0-1 defeat at the Abbey Stadium back in October.

In a game where the U’s failed to conjure up any clear-cut opportunities, they were made to be punished late in the tie after Will Forrester forced an unfortunate own goal from Paul Digby to consign the hosts to their fifth defeat on the bounce.

Summarising that defeat, the Head Coach stated: “(It’s) a tough run of games for us (and) tough results at the moment. We’ve lost way too many games. That should be just a rubbish 0-0 in the end after the first half but we haven’t found a way of taking points from games at the moment when they’re running away from us.”

Of the U’s nine victories against Port Vale, just one has occurred at this weekend’s venue. Funnily enough, no fans were there to witness it as O’Neil’s piledriver in February 2021 secured the 0-1 success and pushed his side back to the summit of League Two. Where the visiting faithful are concerned, a win in Burslem is long overdue.


Referee: Tom Reeves

Assistant Referee: Adam Ricketts

Assistant Referee: Jacob Lehane

Fourth Official: Darren Wilding

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Match Reports

United earn 2-0 win at Vale Park

1 April 2023

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Cambridge United returned to the win column with a fine 2-0 victory over Port Vale at Vale Park…

Two goals to start the second half saw United pick up a rare away win in one of the best performances by the U’s this season.

Smith opened up the scoring on 47 minutes before Jones doubled the advantage four minutes later, to give the team and their supporters hope ahead of the run-in.

Four changes were named to the starting XI from the side that lost to Charlton two weeks ago, with Will Mannion, Harrison Dunk, Conor McGrandles and Shilow Tracey all coming into the team.

The U’s got off to a reasonable start in the contest and saw two promising entries into the box thwarted during the opening moments of the game. The first saw Brophy win the ball high up the pitch before driving inside and seeing his pass cut out before the second coming from Tracey – on the opposite wing – who flashed his ball across the six-yard-box to no avail.

Harrison had the home side’s first sight of goal, breaking the U’s offside trap before firing wide and Smith did similar soon after at the other end, as United continued to find joy on the counter-attack.

Brophy – playing on the right of a front three – sent a shot whistling wide of the post after taking the space that opened up for him with just under 30 minutes on the clock and there were strong appeals for a penalty when McGrandles went tumbling in the box moments later.

Then, when the referee waved away the protests, Tracey had a golden opportunity to put the U’s ahead but sent a curling effort just past the woodwork as United continued to play in the ascendancy.

Although the U’s had plenty to be encouraged by during the first third of the match, the struggling to find the scoresheet was once again a concern.

That was amplified as four minutes of time were added on, as Lankester was played through on goal with a marker for company, but after twisting and turning to shrug him off, he curled agonisingly wide to send the teams in level.

Mark Bonner turned to his bench for the beginning of the second half with Harvey Knibbs sent on for Shilow Tracey. Mannion – coming in for the poorly Mitov – made a crucial save to deny Ojo on 47 minutes and his fine keeping was rewarded a minute later, as United went straight up the other end to score through Smith, who found the net on the rebound after Stone parried Lankester’s shot right into his path.

With confidence finally flowing through them, United pushed for a second and got one a few minutes later, as Jones glanced in McGrandles’ free-kick to give the team their first two-goal lead in a game since the October win over Wycombe Wanderers.

It looked like there was going to be a third as Smith bore down on goal after Lankester played a well-weighted pass into his path, but the striker’s right footed effort was right at Stone who was able to take the ball under.

With half an hour to play, the U’s were all over the home team as the opportunities kept on coming. Smith came inches away from finding the bottom corner from a free-kick 25 yards out and then Bennett fired over the bar after a period of serious pressure on the Vale goal.

United were able to see out the contest with ease as Bonner’s men registered a ninth victory of the season.

There is of course, still much to do and a huge uphill task to overcome if the U’s are to survive in League One this season, but today’s win does at least breathe life into the challenge ahead of the remaining games.

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Ticket News

Tickets: Port Vale (A)

9 March 2023

Sponsored by

Ticket information for Cambridge United's Saturday 1st April match at Port Vale has been confirmed...

The U's have been given 700 unallocated seated tickets at the following prices:

  Adults (22-61) Seniors (62+) Young Adults (18-21) Young Teens (13-17) Under 13s
 Prices £24 £19 £16 £12 Free

Advance tickets are available online until 9pm on Thursday 30th March.

Tickets will also be available for fans to buy on the day of the game from the Away Kiosks, which can be bought via card payment only.

Disabled supporters will be charged the appropriate age related price with a free assistant ticket, if required. Please contact if you require a Wheelchair ticket or disabled car parking space. 

Supporters can buy their tickets online at, over the phone by calling 01223 566500 (option 1) or by visiting the Abbey Stadium Club Shop.

Three Away Credits will be issued upon purchasing tickets for this fixture, which are used to prioritise away ticket sales for games where demand is likely to exceed capacity. More information on Away Credits and the importance of linking online accounts with friends and family, please use the tabs below.

Away credits are allocated to the supporter who a ticket was assigned to – if this was not done at the point of purchase, this will have been assigned to the ticket buyer and cannot be reassigned to other supporters retrospectively.

Away credits are allocated per person, per game. Buying multiple tickets for a game in one name will not generate additional credits.

Supporters are strongly advised to use existing ticketing accounts and linked contacts, as creating new accounts or contacts will see past purchases and credits removed.

Season Ticket Holders should use their existing ticketing account to purchase all away tickets, if new accounts are created, eligibility criteria will be affected.

Supporters are advised to link accounts with other supporters who they may wish to purchase tickets for this season.

Allocating tickets to linked accounts will ensure away credits are allocated correctly. Supporters can link accounts with others by visiting the my account section of, edit my details, request new link.

It is extremely important that supporters use the exact email addresses that appear on linked supporters existing accounts to prevent account duplication and deletion.

Season Ticket Holders should use their existing ticketing account in which their Season Ticket is stored. (My account > My current tickets).

For further information or assistance, please email, call 01223 566500 or tweet @cufc_to.

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