Fans go Wild as Athletic rout Vale in Pete's first game in caretaker charge

Date published: 31 December 2018

What a difference a few days and a managerial change can make.

Less than 24 hours after losing 6-0 at Carlisle United, Athletic had a new man at the helm and had turned their attention to Port Vale.

Pete Wild led his side out at Vale Park for the first time, having spoken of the pride in doing so the day before when he was handed the reins after the departure of Frankie Bunn.

Any nerves Athletic fan Wild felt heading into the game quickly disappeared, though, as his players showed their class in sweeping aside Port Vale 4-1 on Saturday.

With 32 minutes gone, Callum Lang was able to profit from a defensive mix-up in Vale’s back line, driving a right-footed shot low under goalkeeper Scott Brown.

The home side were level seven minutes later, with Ben Whitfield turning Anthony Kay’s free-kick beyond Daniel Iversen from close-range, but that was to be the last of the good news for the hosts.

After half-time it was all Oldham.

Mohamed Maouche’s cheeky backheel gave Athletic the lead back less than ten minutes into the second half, before Gevaro Nepomuceno made it 3-1 four minutes from time.

He curled a wonderful shot into the bottom left corner of the goal.

Chris O’Grady then rounded things off nicely and continued his current good spell in front of goal with a strike from close-range in stoppage time.

It left the travelling Oldham Athletic fans singing “He’s one of our own” in the direction of Oldham lad Wild.

The victory closed the gap between Athletic and the play-off places to just five points and moved the team up to 11th in the table.

Next up is a visit from Notts County tomorrow (New Years Day).

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