Jim Gannon has heaped praise on Tom Pope as he looks to put last week`s penalty miss behind him.
The on-loan striker, a lifelong Vale fan, heads into Saturday`s home clash against Northampton still looking for his first goal for the club having seen his potential late winner at Adams Park saved by the legs of Nikki Bull.
But manager Gannon has backed Pope to bounce back and told the club`s official website: "I think Tom is slightly different than most players. He is very strong-minded and he will just brush himself down. There were a few other bits in that game which will give him confidence.
"His all-round contribution was good. He has trained extremely well, every day he`s been at it and you could see his goal threat - the biggest goal threat we have in training and hopefully on a Saturday.
"He`s done himself no harm, not only with the contribution he has made to first-team games but also what he has done in training. He has shown what a good player he is and how single-minded and strong-willed he is to go on and perform for this club."
Gannon continued: "The sign of any good player is that you move on and you learn from that experience and put it right with the next one and there`s no better man than Tom to be determined to put things right, and he can`t wait to score for Vale."