The npower Football League is blessed with lots of good, solid competitors but few come any more committed than Bristol Rovers loanee Guy Branston.

Having played for 19 clubs in just 15 years, the 33-year-old is the archetypal journeyman pro, but managers the length and breadth of the country still want to sign him for a good reason; and that's because he gives you everything he's got, and expects the same from the players around him. I once tried (and failed) to get him on board myself for that very reason.

This lad's one of a dying breed in many respects, because most youngsters these days aren't anywhere near as willing as he is to let others know if they're not pulling their weight. The modern day player prefers to concentrate on his own game, but I happen to think that every team benefits from someone as enthusiastic and wholehearted as he is to the greater cause.

This week, Branston scored against one of his recent former clubs Bradford City, and he went on record afterwards as saying that he wanted to run towards Phil Parkinson and stick his fingers up at his old boss for letting him go. Knowing the type of character he is, I am pretty surprised he was able to restrain himself. It's a common experience in football though, and it's amazing how often a player gains revenge on a manager after they've felt wronged.

In all my years in management I can honestly say that I haven't had an ex-player charge towards me in angry celebration. What would I do if they did? It depends how aggressive they were, but if they got right in my face I can't guarantee I wouldn't squirt them with my water bottle.

What an eventful week it's been for Port Vale and their manager Micky Adams. First the takeover goes through, they come out of administration, Micky's daughter gets married, he signs new players, and then wins on the road at Aldershot Town. Not exactly boring, eh?

I must confess I chuckled when I read that Micky's daughter decided to get married on loan deadline day. I'll bet she moved it from a Saturday so that it'd be easier for her dad to make it too.

It took me back to the early 70s when my friend Drew Harris - a lad that moved from Belfast to Manchester United with me in 1969 - decided to get married on FA Cup final day. I had to go of course, but that didn't stop me giving him a right old rollocking. Who gets married on the day of the cup final?!

Calvin Andrew is a newcomer at Port Vale, signing a deal until the end of January, and the former Palace youngster must be relieved having spent the last three or four months training on his own, waiting for a club to give him a chance.

He kept fit by boxing, cycling and hill running and admits he was bored stiff, so I commend him on his determination and motivation to keep on believing in his ability to find himself new employers.

He'll be feeling it now, though. No matter how much fitness work you do, you can never replicate match fitness, and under the notoriously hard physical regime Micky Adams uses, the boy will be breathing heavily.

I was a manager that placed huge emphasis on fitness, too. It didn't go down well with the players sometimes, but my sides always finished the season strong. My method was to put them through a second pre-season in early December, with lots of running sessions and although they hated it, we usually came through Christmas and the New Year in pretty good nick.

Before I say goodbye this week it would be remiss of me not to say well done to my former player Kevin Ellison on a quality hat-trick against AFC Wimbledon at the weekend.

He's the sort of player who gets easily riled by opponents winding him up, often falling into their trap, but on his day he's a proper match winner. By all accounts he single-handedly won the match for Morecambe on Saturday, so hats off to him. He's always had tremendous football ability.