REUBEN REID struck on his Forest Green debut as Mark Cooper’s side climbed off the foot of the table and out of the relegation zone.

Reid, who arrived at the League Two strugglers on a two-and-half year deal from Exeter City just 24 hours earlier, smacked a sumptuous winner from the edge of the box for his ninth goal of the season as Rovers ended a run of five straight defeats.

Forest Green boss Mark Cooper opted to take a watching brief from the stands with assistant manager Scott Lindsey directing operations from the technical area.

Chances were few and far between in a first-half  deviod of goal action.

Dan Wishart’s fizzer demanded a plunging save from Port Vale’s goalkeeper Ryan Boot after Joe Davis had missed the flight of the ball.

Earlier, Forest Green named January transfer window signings Reuben Reid from Exeter City and defenders Farrend Rawson recruited from Derby County and Gavin Gunning, with the latter making the switch from Port Vale.

Guilty of porous defending this season, Rovers looked a solid unit - Gunning and Rawson mopping things up at the back.

It was huff and puff, but Rovers looked to break the stalemate when a well-worked Reece Brown corner saw Doidge launch himself at the back post but his flying header flashed just wide of the inviting net.

With Cooper making his way down from the stands, Rovers started the second half on the front foot. Scott Laird meeting an Isaiah Osbourne kick and glancing wide and then Reid getting a faint touch on a Manny Monthe cross.

Rovers’ pressure told and transfer window signing Reid struck with a sumptuous hit from 20 yards. The former Exeter man combined with strike partner Doidge to beat Boot all ends up to give Rovers the lead on the hour.

Dayle Grubb replaced Brown a minute later. Rovers remained in control throughout as Vale failed to muster much.

Dave Worrall snatched at a chance with 17 minutes to go for Vale as Rovers moved off the bottom and out of the relegation zone.

Forest Green: (3-5-2) B Collins; Rawson, Monthe, Gunning; Laird, L Collins, Osbourne, Brown (Grubb 61), Wishart; Reid, Doidge

Subs not used: Pickering, Marsh-Brown, Whittle, Simpson, James, Stevens

Attendance: 2,437

Star Man: Reuben Reid