TT MATCH PREVIEW
Steve Harris – @SteveHarris84
Match details: Woking versus Torquay United
Venue: Kingfield Stadium, Woking
Date: Tuesday 20th April 2021
Current form (all competitions):
Woking: L, L, L, D, L, L
Torquay United: W, L, W, W, W, W
Woking: Max Kretzschmar 6
Torquay: Asa Hall 11
Head to Head:
Last time the two teams met: Torquay United 1 – 0 Woking, Friday 2nd April 2021
Danny Wright reminded Torquay United of what they had been missing during his lengthy absence through injury as he came off the bench to score the winner against Woking.
Wright hadn’t featured since he limped off during United’s Boxing Day clash with Yeovil Town with a hamstring injury. However, he made the perfect return as he connected with Adam Randell’s cross in the 83rd minute to seal United’s third win in four games– which closes the gap between the Gulls and league leaders Sutton United to eight points.
Both sides made a bright start as Cards’ defender Moussa Diarra had a header comfortably saved by United keeper Lucas Covolan in the 11th minute. A minute later, Scott Boden connected with a cross from Ryan Law but drilled his shot wide. The Cards threatened again in the 18th minute as former Gulls’ defender Ben Gerring headed a Charlie Cooper corner straight at Covolan.
United skipper Asa Hall then saw a long range strike parried away by Cards keeper Mark Smith on 19 minutes, following good work by Benji Mbangu-Kimpioka and Connor Lemonheigh-Evans. Woking threatened again in the 26th minute when leading scorer Max Kretzschmar saw his powerful shot from distance gathered by Covolan at the second attempt. On the stroke of half-time, Mark Smith tipped a free-kick from Lemonheigh-Evans over the bar in what proved to be the final action of the first 45 minutes.
In the second half, both sides cancelled each other out – but United were given a boost when Wright made his long awaited return in place of Boden in the 56th minute. On 70 minutes, Kretzschmar went close for the visitors with a free-kick which was saved by Covolan. Three minutes later, Gulls defender Joe Lewis narrowly failed to connect with a corner from sub Jake Andrews as the game looked set to end goalless. However, Wright had other ideas as he slotted home Randell’s cross with seven minutes to go to score his ninth goal of the campaign, which ultimately proved to be decisive.
Manager: Alan Dowson
Gateshead-born Alan Dowson appeared in the Football League for Millwall, Fulham, Bradford City and Darlington before first dropping into non-league football with Slough Town in the 1993-94 season. He took up his first managerial post in 2004 when he was appointed as player- manager at Walton and Hersham and in his first season in charge they finished as runners-up in Isthmian League Division One.
In 2007, he moved on to Kingstonian who he guided to promotion from Isthmian League Division South in the 2008-09 campaign. He remained in charge of the K’s until 2014 and during this time they twice missed out on promotion to National League South through the Isthmian League play-offs – in the 2009-10 and 2013-14 seasons – before he resigned to spend more time with his family.
His next managerial port of call was with Hampton and Richmond in September 2014, who he would later lead to the Isthmian League title in the 2015-16 season. He was then appointed as manager of Woking in the summer of 2018 and led them to promotion from the National League South via the play-offs.
Dowson has also worked alongside Sky Sports commentator Martin Tyler, who is currently the Cards first team coach, in all his previous roles as a manager.
One to watch: Kane Ferdinand
Position: Central Midfield
Date of Birth: Aug 7, 1992 – 28 Years Old
Former Clubs: Southend, Peterborough, Northampton, Luton, Cheltenham, Dagenham and Redbridge, East Thurrock, Woking.
International: Irish (2 Caps for Ireland U21).
National League Stats 20-21: Played 29, Goals 5.
The cousin of Les, Rio and Anton Ferdinand, Kane Ferdinand started his career with Southend United in 2010 before joining Peterborough United two years later. After failing to establish himself as a regular with the Posh, Ferdinand was loaned out to Northampton Town, Luton Town and Cheltenham Town before joining Dagenham & Redbridge in 2015. He then dropped into non-league football with East Thurrock in 2016, and moved onto Woking later that year. He is currently the Cards’ top scorer with five goals and has also been capped by the Republic of Ireland at Under-21 level.
View from the Sofa by Sam Jones:
Is it Woking away already? Feels like it comes round earlier every year. Gary’s men go back to North Surrey to play against pantomime villain rivals on the back of some fantastic form. Last Tuesday’s win at Sutton was the performance of the season, with every man doing their jobs to perfection. To keep this title resurgence going, tonight is a must win. Sutton and Stockport both had cracking wins, so it will go right down to the wire. On paper, it’s a sure fire thing for United as Woking have half the bloody town out injured, but this is Torquay United. We all know how this will really go. And if it does fail, we can always throw a hissy fit and create our own League.
Jack Cook – Ben Gerring – Moussa Diarra – Kyran Lofthouse
Tommy Block – Charlie Cooper – Kane Ferdinand
Max Kretzschmar – Zach Robinson – Sam Dalby
Ben Wynter – Sam Sherring – Joe Lewis – Dean Moxey
Adam Randell – Asa Hall – Armani Little – Jake Andrews
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