Date: 8th July 2012 at 9:15am
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While Keith Ryder waits for his takeover of the club to be officially ratified by the Football League, manager Micky Adams is wasting no time in assembling a squad he hopes is capable of a genuine promotion push.

Following the signings of Jennison Myrie-Williams, Ashley Vincent and Darren Murphy, Adams has agreed deals with the former Exeter City and Portsmouth defender Richard Duffy, goalkeeper Chris Neal and defender Dave Artell. Neal and Duffy, in particular, are signings that were unimaginable under the former regime. Duffy is well known to the Vale boss having played for Coventry City during Adams` spell in charge of the Sky Blues. Having started his career at right back, the Welsh International is equally comfortable in central defence, where he played for the majority of his time in Devon.

The signing of Neal also looks a real coup. Having gained promotion with the Shrews last season, it comes as some surprise that Neal has chosen to join the Valiants, though it speaks volumes for the ambition and vision that the club, under Ryder, appear to be displaying.

Artell, meanwhile, adds further experience to the squad. The 31 year old captained Crewe to promotion via the play offs last term and becomes the latest in an increasingly long line of players to move from the Cheshire club to Vale Park. The Valiants certainly appear a little over burdened with central defenders at present, with Gareth Owen, John McCombe, Clayton McDonald and Joe Davis already on the books. A lack of pace among that selection may be of some concern, though Duffy may provide more of a ball playing option alongside the more traditional ‘No.5`. It will be interesting to discover what formation Adams lines up with next season. With further additions expected over the coming week, could the good times be coming back to Vale Park?