TT Match Verdict – TUFC 3-1 Tiverton, 3rd August 2021

Match Verdict – Rob Dand

It’s been a dream of mine to go to Tiverton ever since Saturday afternoon, when Dom asked if I’d write this report. The jewel of Mid Devon, Tivvy is a small town with not one, not even two, but three tattoo studios within throwing distance of each other, the most Wetherspoons-looking Wetherspoons you have ever seen, and an obvious pro-roundabout agenda.

Tonight’s game is a proud moment for Mr and Mrs Trialist, who will have been welling up to see their four grown sons on the teamsheet alongside each other, three of them in the starting line-up. After a sluggish start (an adjective which actually does a disservice to slugs), the Gulls concede what is to be fair a very good goal. The Tiverton fella cuts in from their right hand side and gets a great connection on the ball, sending it across the goal and into the keeper’s top right corner. It’s not long before the Gulls have levelled, however, and Trialist B sends the whole family into raptures by wriggling free from his captor and driving home a clean strike from distance. Just before half-time, the Gulls edge in front after Trialist B times his run well and finds himself through one-on-one with the Tiverton goalkeeper, who brings him down. No doubt this would have been a straight red and the ‘keeper would have been heading for an early bath, had it have been a league game and should baths exist in Tiverton.

The goals aside, in truth the first half took quite a while to get going and there were several question marks over many of the players. Until we got our goal, we looked like a bunch of borderline unfit jobbing professionals who had only recently met – which I suppose is what we were. The second half sees the gradual introduction of most of our recognised starters, and although we do still struggle for an end product at times, the passing is noticeably quicker and more intelligent. One such clever move down the left is crossed in by Dean Moxey and is slotted home by Danny Wright. A routine finish for a man who with willing runners around him, continues to be a threat by getting himself in exactly the right place at the right time. 3-1 to the Gulls, and some bright spots to be encouraged by. We could just do with 10% more sharpness from the players that are already here, which I’m sure will come, and 2-3 additions (possibly loanees?) who would push for a starting place.

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Ratings

23 Marcin Brzozowski – 7 – Didn’t have a lot to do, got 90 minutes under his belt and apart from one or two flaps did okay. Probably not at fault for the goal.

3 Dan Martin – 7 – A little suspect in defence but looked handy going forward. Sharpen up that end product and we’ve got a decent player here I think.

4 Tom Lapslie – 7 – Pretty solid, not the quickest player on the pitch but does the kind of job that Damon Lathrope used to do, spreading the ball around and keeping things moving.

11 Jake Andrews – 6 – Given the captain’s armband and didn’t really get into the game during his stint on the field. A couple of wayward shots and mistimed runs.

14 Trialist A – 7 – Looked comfortable enough at right-back, moved into CM at half time and arguably looked a bit better here. Probably not a starter at the moment but useful backup utility player. I’d think about bringing him in.

15 Trialist B – 7 – Took his goal from open play well and a confident pen as well. Looks to be lacking a bit of fitness but again, might be worth bringing in as a backup. Has a clear end product.

17 Trialist C – 6 – Doesn’t look particularly mobile, I think any half-decent forward is going to make him look very silly all day long

18 Olaf Koszela – 6 – In danger of becoming the new Ashley Yeoman. Didn’t really look comfortable on the ball and no end product.

19 Klaidi Lolos – 8 – Liked the look of this chap. Linked well with Trialist B in the first half and moved out onto the left wing for the second. Very happy with the ball at his feet. A bit of sharpening up and he’s going to cause people problems.

22 Alex Moyse – 6 – Put himself about without being totally commanding.

26 Louie Slough – 6 – Part of the defence that conceded the goal, but didn’t have too much to do elsewhere.

Subs

21 Dean Moxey – 7 – A very comfortable player on the ball and made a great run to set up Wright

2 Ben Wynter – 6 – Didn’t really have a lot of time on the ball

7 CLE – 6 – Had a few chances to either finish himself or set up a teammate but didn’t take any. Got into the right position but couldn’t quite capitalise. Did well to recover from a nasty fall.

9 Danny Wright – 7 – Had more or less one touch and took it well. All we need him to do!

8 Trialist D – 6 – Introduced at half time and did okay. Tivvy had a couple of free headers from corners though, couldn’t work out if that was his fault or Lewis.

20 Scott Piper – 7 – First time I’ve seen this young man. I think there’s potential here. Quick-footed, confident and stronger than he looks. Could turn into a good young player.

10 Armani Little – 7 – Introduced at HT and given the captain’s armband. Did okay, couple of good runs forward from midfield but releasing the pass at the wrong moment.

31 Joe Lewis – 7 – Calm and confident, blossoming into an important player.

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COYY – Rob


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