Chris Wade – @TufcChris
Chris discusses the talking points from TUFC 4-0 Aldershot
Goals make a Difference
This may be the most obvious statement ever, but never has it been more amplified than the two matches over the last four days. At Halifax on Saturday, we had all of the possession and territory but couldn’t force a real opening to take the lead. At Plainmoor on Tuesday, there was a lot more space and room to play, but we scored early and it shaped the game. We were able to move the ball around and get in between Aldershot’s defensive lines so easily, that there were opportunities a plenty. But it’s also about taking those opportunities, and we did this well. Aldershot simply couldn’t live with the fast pace of our football.
The Real Mox
Dean Moxey was again outstanding. After a season interrupted with injury last season, we have seen the real quality of the player that we were lucky to sign. He has also played in a slightly different role and formation to last season, but the left sided centre back role in a three is ideal for him, and especially at his stage of his career. He reads the game so well, and recognising the slow pace of Aldershot’s attacks, he repeatedly stepped out and tried to steal the ball and get us back on the front foot. His first goal from open play for the club also helped. It also led to an outstanding GIF from the club’s official Twitter page that I feel we have all been made to wait too long to see.
Tuesday’s game was Ben Wynter’s 150th in a Torquay shirt. He has been an excellent signing and, like Moxey, has had a different role to play this season. The right sided centre back role gives him the license to show both his sound positional and defensive capabilities and his marauding bursts forward. He has always played for the club with such passion and determination that, apart from a small period under Gary Owers, has been one of the first names on the team sheet. He, as much as anybody, deserves to play for our club with an EFL badge on his sleeve. Not to mention one of the best moments of all time with “that” goal at Woking.
There has been a lot to like about loan addition Stephen Duke-McKenna over the last few weeks, and Tuesday was no exception. He was a live wire in midfield, being sharper and quicker to the ball several times in midfield and starting attacks. He has very quick feet and they get him out of some tight situations. There are times where he is guilty of over playing, or taking risks in areas that you really don’t want him too. But knowing when to and when not to try flicks and tricks in tight areas will come and develop as he gets older, plays more and matures. Who else better to spend a whole season learning from than Gary Johnson, eh? Perhaps he could bring his mate Sinclair with him too?
Difference down to 8 points
Right then. Here goes some crazy optimism for you. In the 300-mile car journey home from Halifax on Sunday, the season was done, finished. But after 3 points on Tuesday, it feels just a little different. The next four games are vital and winnable. Weymouth on Saturday is another excellent chance for three points, Notts County after that is a game, we simply have to win to have any chance at all. A trip to Woking and Eastleigh at Plainmoor across the Easter weekend also represents another excellent chance for six points. Were we to get 9 or 10 points from those games, you would think that the gap would be significantly smaller than it is now. With everybody above us to play each other too, it’s not totally out of the question. Whether we are good enough to show a level on consistency that we haven’t shown before this season, is a different question.
Rest in Peace Frank
There is no better place to finish this article than to remember the late, great Frank O’Farrell. Although too young myself to really understand the impact of him at our club at the time, there can be no doubt at how highly he is regarded and so fondly remembered from people I have spoken to and around the club. Torquay recognised him with a minute’s applause before the game on Tuesday and the players wore black armbands. A fitting tribute for a TUFC legend.