TT Match Preview – Weston-super-Mare AFC by Liam Drury

“We’ve got some very good ball players but sadly, the physicality’s missing from our side”

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TT spoke to WSM media man Liam Drury about ‘the Seagulls’ before Tuesday’s match-up at the Woodspring Stadium

Hi Liam before we discuss the football team, tell us a bit about yourself and what is your involvement with Weston-super-Mare AFC?

I have been a part of the media and marketing side at Weston since the start of the 2015-16 season. During my first season, I wrote the U-18 match reports before moving into a first-team role at the start of the 2016-2017 season, and I’ve been there ever since, helping to run the social media and writing the match reports and match previews!

The Seagulls are really struggling so far this season in the NLS, what has been going wrong?

Putting square pegs in round holes, really! Playing strikers out on the wings isn’t the best idea, and we’ve even been playing our best player out there in recent games where he struggles to have a real impact! But hopefully once that first win comes, we’ll look more confident and we’ll really have a go at teams then!

How’s the team’s form been in recent weeks and are you optimistic of giving Gary Johnson’s men a run for their money?

Well, as I’ve previously mentioned, we’re still without that vital first league win! But having beaten Bath in the FA Cup a couple of games ago, it shows that we have the ability to test the better teams in the league. I’m hopeful of us putting up a test on Tuesday night against Torquay but it’ll certainly be one of our hardest tests of the season so far, but the good thing is we haven’t been losing by many as of yet!

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Which WSM players should we look out for on Tuesday night and why?

I think the main one to look out is Jarrad Welch. He’s a 19 year-old central midfield player who’s in his second season with us, and his right foot from outside the box is dangerous. He’s got a good eye for a pass, his set piece delivery isn’t bad and he’s got a good work rate. Others to look out for is probably centre-back Jason Pope, who’s good on the ball and can bring it out of defence as well as goalkeeper Luke Purnell, who’s one of the best keepers in the league!

Have you got the right man in charge and what sort of tactics does he employ?

Due to my position at the club, I’m not going to comment on the manager’s situation! We usually line up with a 4-3-3 formation, playing the ball out from the back and trying to keep possession of the ball. We’ve got some very good ball players but sadly, the physicality’s missing from our side and Gary Johnson sides are known to be quite physical, quick and energetic!

What’s the local support like for the club and are you expecting a good crowd for the visit of TUFC?

I wouldn’t say that the local support is the greatest, but there’s certainly worse in the league. Having heard rumours of Torquay bringing 300-500 fans on Tuesday night, I think that this could be one of the better attendances at the Woodspring in the league this season, and I think they’ll be at least 650 attendance-wise (not official attendance though!)

Describe the Woodspring Stadium for me and how’s the atmosphere at home games?

Got a good, covered main stand, probably one of the best in the league in my humble opinion. It’s good for making noise in if you’ve got a good main core of fans! As with every other club I’m sure, our atmosphere would be better if things on the pitch were better but sadly, that isn’t the case. If things happen for us on Tuesday night though, the atmosphere could be an alright one.

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Who are the best teams you have faced this season so far and who do you think will be promoted?

Best side I’ve seen this season is probably Billericay. Jake Robinson’s different gravy up front for them, and I can’t really see them being stopped from getting promoted. With Gary Johnson now in charge, I think it’s going to be a straight fight between them, TUFC and Woking to get up and out of the league.

Can you recommend some pubs for the travelling Yellow Army (including myself!) to grab pre-game refreshments?

I believe that the Walnut Tree down the road from the club, about a 15-minute walk, is now reopened for business, but it’s not that great of a pub! There’s quite a few pubs in the town centre that are quite nice (don’t visit there often though), and they’re hard to miss, one being smack-bang in the centre of town. The town centre is about 30 minutes away when walking though!

What are your thoughts on TUFC entering the league (if any!) and give us a match prediction for Tuesday night?

It’s a fall from grace really, and with the crowds that Torquay take away, they may be seen to some club clubs as a cup final! After Saturday’s performance, I can’t really see us taking anything from the game although our boys will be buoyed by playing Torquay in front of a relatively sizeable crowd. I will go for 1-3 to Torquay though, although I hope to be proved wrong! I reckon we might bring more than 500 Liam! Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions and after Tuesday night I hope your season perks up – Dom

 


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