November has been a frustrating month for the Vale of Lune, not only did they lose their unbeaten record to Douglas but they had no time repair any psychological damage because their next two fixtures were postponed because of the adverse weather conditions.
On Saturday, North One West leaders Vale entertain second in the table Warrington, who are undefeated in the last five games and have an unblemished home record; on current form the Wires are certain to provide their hosts with a severe test.
However, the Vale are used to toughing it out with clubs in close proximity to their top spot having defeated Wilmslow and Stockport with something to spare.
An important factor will be the composition of the squad that the Vale are able to put out because undoubtedly the six changes made in the side that faced Douglas from the previous week’s victory against Stockport had an effect.
The loss of experienced players does throw a burden of responsibility onto the shoulders of others and can, as it did against Douglas, lead to a fragmented performance.
Lack of game time could also come into the equation, hopefully the Douglas result was a blip, and normal service can resume.
The coaching team have to prepare their charges to hit the ground running and even though the underfoot conditions might handicap some of their thoroughbreds a statement of intent will need to be posted early doors.
December will provide an examination of Vale’s credentials because hard on the heels of Warrington comes an away game at Northwich, another side with an unblemished home record.
Moss Farm is not a happy hunting ground for the Vale because they have yet to record a victory in their past five league meetings.
The year concludes with a home game against Blackburn who are currently in a rich vein of form but lost at home to the Vale over at Ramsgreave Drive, 31-10, in the second North One West fixture of the season.
All Vale’s senior side’s fixtures were postponed which resulted in Lymm 2 leapfrogging the Vale to go top of the Cotton Traders Championship following their home win against Rochdale, 52-15.