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1617 burnley olatunde bayode 00 300x500A year that started with a 4-1 win at Morecambe will end tomorrow at Port Vale for our youth team who have certainly shown a big improvement in the second half of 2016.

There were two wins in the first five games of the year but that was followed by nine successive defeats to end the 2015/16 season after Graham Lancashire had said that it didn’t matter if they lost every game provided they got players through to the next level.

Things have improved this season with Michael Duff in charge of the team. We’ve already won more points than we did in the entire 2015/16 season and we go into tomorrow’s game, when we are expected to field an inexperienced team, at Vale having won five and drawn one of the last six games.

In this fixture last season we were beaten 3-1 in the last of that run of nine when Olatunde Bayode (pictured) scored our goal. We had beaten them earlier in the season, recording a 4-3 victory with an own goal and further goals from Tommy Wood, Josh Dolling and Bayode.

Our opponents are having a good season and currently sit fourth in the table, three points ahead of us. Their lead over us is two points but we do have a game in hand.

It’s our last game for three weeks as the traditional break at this level comes in and we’ll resume in 2017 with a home game against current leaders Walsall who will be looking to do the double over us.

Kick off tomorrow is 11 a.m.

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