Latics Stretch Unbeaten Run To SevenOldham Athletic stretched their unbeaten run to seven games with a 1-1 draw at home to Port Vale.
All the action happened in the second half as Sam Foley gave the visitors the lead on the hour mark, however Latics won a penalty seven minutes later.
Anthony Gerrard was fouled inside the area and although Liam Kelly’s initial penalty was saved, he followed up the rebound from one yard out to equalise.
Manager John Sheridan welcomed back Aaron Amadi-Holloway and Mike Jones to the starting line up as they replaced Joseph Mills and Carl Winchester.
It was the visitors which started the game with a lot more possession than Latics but it was Sheridan’s men that had the first chance of the night.
After neat build up on the edge of the box, Jones received the ball in the penalty area, sent a driven ball across the box but it was just ahead of Holloway.
Holloway was causing a nuisance in attack, winning headers and flick ons, and a minute later he was fouled on the edge of the box.
Danny Lafferty and Jones stood over the ball but it was the latter which struck the ball against the wall.
The game was not making for a fantastic spectacle, not helped by the weather conditions.
Midway through the first half, Cameron Dummigan crossed towards the back post where Liam Kelly was stood but his header was blocked on route to goal by Richard Duffy.
Matt Palmer was the next to try his luck from distance but it sailed over Chris Neal’s crossbar.
The rain started to bucket down over SportsDirect.com Park with Latics struggling to create a clear cut goalscoring opportunity.
Goalkeeper Joel Coleman had to be alert at the other end as Louis Dodds struck a free kick from 35 yards which he was behind to save.
It was the Valiants who finished the first half stronger as their top goalscorer Ajay Leitch-Smith skipped past two Latics defenders but was eventually crowded out.
Anthony Gerrard received the first booking of the game just before half time as he hacked down Dodds on the edge of the area.
Michael O’Connor stepped up to take the free kick but fired the ball against the wall.
It was Latics who were to have the last chance of the first half as Kelly struck from 25 yards, the goalkeeper fumbled but managed to collect at the second attempt.
Both sides came out with a bit more attacking intent in the second half with Palmer the first to go closest.
The midfielder received the ball on the edge of the box from Holloway but the midfielder struck over the bar.
Latics had to be wary as Port Vale were building up a lot of momentum.
Firstly Foley raced through on goal but was crowded out and a succession of corners saw Vale take the lead on the hour mark.
After Latics failed to clear the ball into the box, Foley struck goalwards from 12 yards, the ball took a wicked deflection and into the back of the net.
Sheridan made changes and brought on Carl Winchester and Jake Cassidy for Main and Dummigan.
However, it was the visitors who should have extended their lead five minute later.
Foley was presented with a clear sight of goal but Coleman stood tall to push the ball out. That was straight into the path of Leitch-Smith but the striker ballooned over from six yards.
They would come to rue that missed chance as Latics had the perfect opportunity to equalise.
Gerrard was fouled in the penalty area by Vale defender Richard Duffy and Kelly stepped up to take.
His initial strike was saved by the goalkeeper but he followed up, converting on the line to equalise for Athletic.
Latics had the momentum and the fans were really behind Sheridan’s men but they could not manage to muster a clear cut goalscoring chance.
It would be Vale that could have found the winner with 15 minutes remaining but substitute Theo Robinson could not connect with Foley’s driven cross.
As time started to run out, Latics went long and it was nearly from a long punt from Coleman which Latics nearly won the game.
Holloway took the ball into his path but struck wide of Neal’s goal when one-on-one with the goalkeeper.
The striker had to be subbed a minute later as he seemed to pick up a knock on his leg, and although Latics huffed and puffed for a winner, they could not get one.
Oldham Athletic: Coleman, J.Wilson, Gerrard, Dieng, Lafferty, Kelly, Palmer, Dummigan (Winchester 64’), Jones, Holloway (Murphy 87’), Main (Cassidy 64’).
Subs not used: Cornell, Mills, B.Wilson, Croft.
Port Vale: Neal, Purkiss, Dickinson, McGivern, Duffy, O’Connor, Kennedy (Hooper 50’), Dodds, Foley, Leitch-Smith (Robinson 74’), Grant.
Subs not used: Yates, Brown, Kelly, Boot, Inniss.
Goals: Oldham Athletic (Kelly 67’) 1-1 Port Vale (Foley 60’)
Attendance: 3,507 (338 visiting supporters)