'Drop our egos' - Sheffield Wednesday hero bemoans 'awful' pitch but praises Owls battle

Match-winner Will Vaulks was delighted with how Sheffield Wednesday battled their way to victory against Port Vale.
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Vaulks was the hero at Vale Park as his long-range stunner sealed a 1-0 win and all three points for the Owls to make it three league away wins for the first time in 2017, and also help them climb into third place on the League One table.

But it was by no means a pretty game, and both sides were made to work hard on a pitch that was chopping up right from the get-go, with sand splashing up from the ground and chunks of turf coming away completely.

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The midfielder, who is finding his feet now after a difficult start to life at Hillsborough, was really pleased with the victory – but admitted that the playing surface made things difficult.

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“Genuinely, it was one of the worst I’ve ever played on,” Vaulks told The Star. “And I’m no football snob, I’ve played up in Scotland, I’ve played non-league when I was younger, and I’ve played in League One before – but that genuinely was dreadful.

“Even for the gaffer and his assistant, I don’t think they could tell just how bad it was. So it was a game where we had to drop our egos, which is a thing that I think you have to do in this league. We were never going to outplay this team today with 20 or 30 passes and a tap in. You have to win the battle, and then your quality will show. And it did.

“We had some good chances towards the end, and you have to win that fight, which we did. We dealt with their long balls – the back three were brilliant in the air – but yeah, the pitch was truly awful.”

Will Vaulks was the match winner for Sheffield Wednesday against Port Vale.Will Vaulks was the match winner for Sheffield Wednesday against Port Vale.
Will Vaulks was the match winner for Sheffield Wednesday against Port Vale.
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It was so bad that he almost didn’t do his trademark backflip celebration – but he decided to go for it anyway.

“I did actually!” he said with a smile. “But there was no way I wasn’t doing it with the goal being the way it was, and the importance of it. I checked the ground before, and to be fair that corner was the best bit of the pitch, so I got through unscathed.”

Next up, Plymouth Argyle.