Port Vale: Scoring more must be Tom Pope's goal for next season, says Mark Grew
TOM Pope has been told he must find his shooting boots next season.
The 26-year-old striker agreed a new one-year deal with Port Vale at the weekend, but assistant boss Mark Grew has warned him he will have to be sharper in front of goal next term.
Pope, from Sneyd Green, made 45 appearances in all competitions last season, but scored just five times. Grew wants a much better return this time.
"Five goals is nowhere near enough for a centre-forward and Tom has to do better than that next year," he said.
"It's not as if he didn't have chances, but he wasn't as clinical as he should have been when the ball fell for him.
"We have got to bring in another front man after losing Marc Richards, but whatever happens, I know Tom will be disappointed with his tally of goals. He's got to be looking at a minimum of 12."
Former Biddulph Vics striker Pope, who returns from holiday on Thursday, spent three years learning his trade at Crewe Alexandra before sealing a £150,000 switch to Rotherham in 2009.
He joined Vale in January 2011 on loan until the end of that season when boss Micky Adams handed him a one-year deal.
But he struggled for goals, failing to find the net since scoring the winner against Plymouth in January.
Grew added: "Of course, he offers more to the team than just his goals.
"He got a lot of assists last season, and Marc would have been the first to thank him for being a provider."