Nevertheless, the Lowland League leaders are overwhelming favourites to make it ten straight wins in the top-v-bottom clash at New Dundas Park tonight.
Vale have brought in Grant Sandison as their new manager and have picked up their first point of the season since that humiliating defeat at Victoria Park.
And Horn, who will be without the suspended Keiran McGachie tonight, said: “It will be a totally different game from the last time we played Vale. The new manager is in and he’s got them organised. We expect it to be more difficult this time.”
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Third-placed Spartans now trail Rose by 11 points and must simply be hoping to avoid losing further ground in the title race given the calibre of their opposition.
They host Celtic B at Ainslie Park but, after last month’s 1-0 away win, Dougie Samuel’s men have the chance to become the first Lowland League club to do the double over an Old Firm colts side.
Fourth-placed Civil Service Strollers will hope to bounce back from two successive defeats when they travel to Caledonian Braves.
Edinburgh University go to Berwick Rangers full of confidence after two wins and a draw from their last three matches.
In the East of Scotland League, Penicuik Athletic manager Steve McLeish has the luxury of a full squad as he prepares for the visit of Dunbar United.
For the first time since taking over in August, McLeish had a full bench on Saturday when the Premier Division pacesetters saw off his former club Tynecastle 2-0.
He said: “We’re getting fitter and it’s great to have everyone available competing for places.”
Second-placed Tranent, one point behind having played two games more, will attempt to keep up the pressure with a win at bottom side Whitehill Welfare.
The top two meet at Foresters Park on Saturday.
Third-placed Linlithgow Rose can make it ten straight wins in all competitions with victory at Prestonfield tonight, but take on a rejuvenated Newtongrange Star side who have won three league games in a row themselves.
Elsewhere, Tynecastle host Dundonald Bluebell at Meggetland.