In one of the stories of the FA Cup third round, Port Vale’s Tom Pope lived up to his promise of scoring against John Stones, as he netted an equaliser against Manchester City in the club’s 4-1 defeat on Saturday.
Leading 1-0, City were pegged back by their League Two opponents as striker Pope popped up with a fine header to send the traveling faithful into raptures – although they only remained level for another seven minutes.
Just watched the highlights of the England game! I know I’m a league 2 player, I know he plays for England, I know he’s on £150k a week, I know he’s a million times better player than me but I’d love to play against John Stones every week! I’d get 40 a season! #soft #weakaspiss
— Tom Pope (@Tom_Pope9) June 7, 2019
Regardless of the final outcome, Pope’s goal held further significance after he claimed he would be able to score ’40 a season’ past Stones if they were playing in the same league, having made the statement after seeing the City defender drop a clanger against the Netherlands in last summer’s Nations League.
With the third round draw pitting Pope’s Vale against Stones‘ City, he was able to stay true to his word and, despite not netting 40, he proved that perhaps the England international isn’t all he is cracked up to be.
Naturally, Pope was overjoyed in his achievement, taking to Twitter to aim another dig at the 25-year-old.
Sorry I can’t reply to everyone it’s gone mental! I’d just like to say I was completely wrong and bang out of order to say I’d score 40 a season….. it’s more like 50 enjoy your weekend
— Tom Pope (@Tom_Pope9) January 4, 2020
He held nothing back, stating: “Sorry I can’t reply to everyone it’s gone mental! I’d just like to say I was completely wrong and bang out of order to say I’d score 40 a season….. it’s more like 50 enjoy your weekend.”
The chat didn’t stop there, though. Widely known as the one of the key jokers in the City dressing room, Pope then revealed the ridicule would go further as Benjamin Mendy had not only asked him, but waited outside for him in order to take a picture with the 34-year-old.
“The Highlight of my day wasn’t the goal it was Benjamin Mendy waiting outside our dressing room waiting for a selfie with me to put in their group chat – Mendy has bants,” Pope explained of the remarkable exchange.
The Highlight of my day wasn’t the goal it was Benjamin Mendy waiting outside our dressing room waiting for a selfie with me to put in their group chat Mendy has bants
— Tom Pope (@Tom_Pope9) January 5, 2020
Despite scoring the memorable goal, Vale bowed out of the FA Cup at the third round after three more goals ended Vale’s hopes of an upset, placing Pep Guardiola’s side in the hat for the fourth round draw.