TT TALKING POINTS
Ian East – @Easters86
Ian dissects the talking points from Yeovil Town 1-2 Torquay United
Torquay travelled to another of their bogey grounds yesterday as the Gulls made the short trip to Huish Park to face Yeovil Town. Gulls fans would have been forgiven for being slightly pessimistic beforehand as the previous 2 trips to Yeovil had both ended in defeats, one being particularly heavy, but the Gulls were about to secure their first “double” of the season. Here are my 5 talking points..
Young Players Stepping Up
I’ve been consistently critical/disappointed with the players who we signed in the summer, so it’s important to start there. Now while nothing is completely solved there has been a clear improvement in one or two of the young players signed, which should give Torquay fans hope. Dan Martin now looks an accomplished left back/wing back in this league. He had another excellent game as well as Chiori Johnson on the other flank. Whilst I’d still have doubts Johnson will ever be a regular for a good team in this league, he has some Matt Buse about him in that he gives you everything he’s got, can play a few positions and occasionally will look decent. I think he’s proven to be a useful squad player. Lolos as well, while he is still definitely a long term project player, he has something about him that on his day that will win Torquay a few games. He can definitely be a winger/forward you’d want to have around. Promising signs and hopefully these guys continue to develop.
Sinclair will need to be replaced
While Sinclair Armstrong didn’t start the game, GJ opting for Wright with Evans in support, it was the young loanee who really changed the game for Torquay. His direct running, work rate and physicality just gave the Yeovil defence something horrible to deal with and they couldn’t cope. He was denied an equaliser by a smart save and then denied a winning goal by a very tight offside call, before playing a part in the eventual winning effort from Holman. His celebrations went down well with the Yellow Army but his play will be the bigger miss. GJ needs to find a similar replacement which won’t be easy.
Return of the Mac
Another position I’ve been critical of, as the downgrade in GK from Lucas to Halstead was threatening to put our season into a relegation battle. The decision to bring back MacDonald may have at first been a little underwhelming, but overall he has provided a level of consistency desperately needed by this generally inexperienced back line. I thought he was outstanding yesterday making a vital save in the first half from a deflected effort, before in the 2nd half (with the rain pouring down) being decisive and commanding. Catching hopeful long balls into our box in the last few minutes to extinguish Yeovil hopes is exactly what you wanted to see.
Brilliance out of nowhere
This is kind of what the game was all about. The first half had plenty of endeavor from both teams but with no real quality, and the 2nd half started in much the same way. Danny Wright went close with a header but the game felt like it was meandering towards a wet 0-0 draw before Barnett hit a shot from Jupiter and found the top corner for one of the best goals I’ve ever seen live. Whilst our equaliser was ultimately a mistake from their new keeper, it was still a brilliant delivery from Evans on the corner to create his uncertainty. And speaking of the Lemon, it was his genius scoop of a through ball that set up Holman for the stoppage time winner that sent everyone nuts.
Seems a good place to end. It’s not been the easiest season – we couldn’t win at home while doing okay away, then winning at home but hopeless away with a couple of embarrassing cup losses thrown in. It’s not what we wanted or probably expected but still it’s clear the fans have generally stuck with this team. Over 1000 in attendance for a mid-table game in typically winter conditions. The loyal to a fault Torquay fans deserved the scenes of the late winner and the players/management enjoying the celebrations with them post-match. A great effort by everyone and ultimately rewarding…for a change!!
COYY – Ian
“If people construed that interview after the Yeovil win as negative, all I can say is ‘Absolutely not’. Yes, we’ve had to overcome a lot of problems, and everyone has been working doubly hard. There’s only so much you can do in a 24-hour day. But I was delighted with Sunday’s win, I wasn’t down at all, really, and I would ask everyone to look at the interview again in a positive mindset” – GARY JOHNSON
TT MATCH VERDICT – YEOVIL 1-2 TUFC, 2nd JAN 2022
THE GULLS WEEK 3rd – 9th JAN by Danny Burnell
PROUD AWAY SPONSOR OF KLAIDI LOLOS