Port Vale have confirmed the signing of Tom Pope from Bury, two years after he left. The 31-year-old is a boyhood supporter of Vale and has penned a two-year contract to return to the club, now managed by Michael Brown.
Vale were relegated into Sky Bet League Two and Brown has been busy putting plans in place. New faces will come in, such as Pope, in addition to more already leaving. An official retained list has yet to be named but recruitment will be a key component of their intended promotion challenge.
In 40 appearances last season, Pope netted seven goals for Bury as they ended the season avoiding relegation. Now managed by Lee Clark, he has been happy to allow the player to return to a club he clearly adores. Bury chairman Stewart Day says he has ‘nothing but total respect for Tom both as a player and as a person’.
Pope initially joined Port Vale on loan back in 2011, before it was eventually made permanent at the end of that season. During his previous spells with the club, Pope has scored just under 70 goals in just less than 200 games. He is certainly someone the fans will be delighted to see return to Vale Park, hoping he’ll instantly get back among the goals in the famous white jersey.
He has part of the side which won promotion back in 2013 out of League Two, proving he knows exactly what it takes to get out of the league that he and Brown find themselves in.