Port Vale will be without Alfie Devine and Ollie Arblaster for their trip to Wanderers, Andy Crosby has confirmed.

The pair were absent from the squad that drew 1-1 against Stevenage in the FA Cup second round over the weekend.

“I think it is a consequence of playing international football and the load their bodies are put through,” Crosby told the club’s YouTube channel.

“They obviously play a home game and travel away, it is a lot of sitting around and boredom. They come back to us and are right back in the thick of it.

“We think that is the cause. We don’t think it is anything major, but both players missed (Stevenage) and we will miss them on Tuesday night as well.”

James Plant was also forced off during the first half against Stevenage after suffering a shoulder injury.

“James, I think his shoulder popped out,” the boss continued. “It has been put back in by the medical department.

“He got a chance to play what I think is a better position for him, and it is unfortunate that he has picked up that shoulder injury.”

The Valiants have won one of their last seven games in all competitions, and Crosby admits it has been a “challenging period”.

“I don’t think the resilience and togetherness of this group should be in any doubt, they are sticking together,” he explained.

“We are obviously going through a challenging period in terms of results, but this group are really close and they kept going. They got the least I thought we deserved in terms of the equaliser (against Stevenage).”

Saturday’s result means Port Vale will have to prepare for a second-round replay in addition to their busy December period, and Crosby admits the coming weeks will be demanding on the squad.

“It is going to be 12 games in December with the replay,” he added. “We have got to try and manage all the players in this period so when they are needed, they are ready and can play to the level we need them to play at.”

Wanderers recorded a 1-0 victory when the sides met at Vale Park in the league earlier this season, with Dion Charles getting the decisive goal on the stroke of half time.

The Whites also came out on top when the sides last met at the Toughsheet Community Stadium in February. Victor Adeboyejo and Josh Sheehan were both on target that day.