Craig Hughes – @craigwwfc35
Craig looks at the United performances in pre-season
Mark Halstead (7) – On the whole I think Mark has had a decent enough pre-season, bar the Plymouth game when he could come under stick for a couple of their goals. This was put right a few days later with his 10/10 performance against Exeter and some amazing saves. With some confidence under his belt he could become a good first choice keeper this season, very much a confidence player.
Rhys Lovett (8) – It’s going to be good competition between Rhys and Mark Halstead for that number 1 shirt. Every time Rhys has played he has done well. Against Buckland he was vocal, against Exmouth he was commanding his 6 yard area and coming for crosses and at Truro he was vocal, commanding and pulled off some great saves, I know he hasn’t played as much as Halstead but from what I’ve seen of him so far a rating of 8 for pre-season is a fair one.
Dylan Crowe (7) – I think in all the friendlies Dylan has played in he has done really well. A full back who enjoys getting forward and taking on players to get a delivery into the box, only a slight negative is that sometimes his positioning defensively is questionable but this will come with more games and minutes. A solid 7 rating for pre season for Dylan.
Dean Moxey (8) – One of, if not the oldest player of the squad and he has played so much over pre-season! A true professional who has kept himself in great shape to allow him to play all these minutes. Done his job in every game, won tackles, headers and even grabbed himself a cheeky penalty goal vs Truro. Has to be an 8 rating for Deano.
Ali Omar (6) – In general he’s not had a poor pre-season but in my opinion it’s been above average. Some silly mistakes and rushes of blood have lost him marks in my ratings for sure, especially that silly sending off against Truro. He will be a good centre half for us this season I’m sure of it, although I can see a mistake or 2 happening in some games but you get this at this level.
Ross Marshall (7) – Was good to see Ross play a number of pre-season games especially because he had to miss the Buckland game through injury. From what I’ve seen of Ross he definitely doesn’t shy out of a tackle and is strong in the air. Like Omar, Ross is prone to a mistake and lapse of concentration, a pre-season rating of 7 is a good return for what I’ve seen in these games.
Dan Martin (N/A) – Can’t really comment much about Dan Martin’s pre-season as he only played 20 minutes or so against Buckland and has been suffering from that injury throughout. Hope to see him back soon.
Ben Wyatt (7) – A smart piece of business this by Gary Johnson and Aaron Downes, Wyatt impressed massively when he came on in the 2nd half vs Exeter and showed some great touches. His defensive reading of the game is good, was quieter against Truro but still solid. A top end 7 rating for the couple of games I’ve seen Ben play.
Ollie Tomlinson (6) – Not really featured as much as he would probably have liked due to Omar, Moxey and Marshall likely to be the first choice centre half options ahead of him. When he has played he has looked composed and assured in his game and looks a tidy player. With the amount of minutes he’s got in pre-season I think a 6 is about right.
Asa Hall (N/A) – Again much like Dan Martin I can’t really say much about Asa through pre-season due to him being injured, the good thing is that he’s always there pushing the squad from the side-lines and we know what ability he has. I was hoping he came back fitter this season and got a full pre-season behind him but wasn’t to be.
Brett McGavin (9) – The pick of the new signings so far in my opinion, what a player we have on our hands. A confident young man who isn’t afraid to boss the middle of the park and spray passes around at ease as well as having a keen eye for goal. Was the match winner vs Exeter and he fully deserved that, plus there was a nicely headed goal away at Exmouth. Going to be a very exciting player to watch this season and will be a key member of this squad. The highest rating of this blog goes to Brett.
Ryan Hanson (6) – Not seen that much of Ryan during pre-season, came in injured and has only featured sparingly. From what I’ve seen he looks like a player who will get better as he gets more game time and appears to have a strong range of passing and movement which will benefit this squad. Was looking forward to seeing him more during these games but little niggles haven’t allowed that.
Kieron Evans (7) – A very technical player, I’ve liked what I’ve seen from Kieran, maybe in the first few games he was played out of position a bit but he just got on with it. Like seeing him play central as that’s where he’s more effective. Has a very good set piece delivery from corners and free kicks and a great skill selection. Destined to be an important playmaker for the Gulls this year I think.
Shaun Donnellan (7) – A decent pre-season for Shaun since coming in on trial vs Exmouth (I think) and not many days later we announced his permanent signing. A steady midfield option who breaks up the play and does the “dirty work” so to speak in the middle of the park. A promising pre-season for Shaun on the whole but for a ankle injury he picked up against Truro (hopefully that isn’t too bad).
Tom Lapslie (6) – Again with Tom it’s been another stop start pre-season for him (much like his season last year). Picks up a lot of niggly injuries but that’s because of the all-action way he plays. He did return last weekend, and got himself an assist for Will Goodwin to head home vs Truro. If kept fit for a whole season will be a important player again, but it’s also good to see we have got more midfield options now to cover.
Will Goodwin (8) – A late loan signing before the kick off against Plymouth. Came on and did well in that game and has done well in every game he’s played in. Looks lively and gets in the positions we want a striker to get in, also not afraid to shoot and notched himself a couple of goals vs Truro albeit one was a well taken penalty. A lot of promise from this young lad.
Aaron Jarvis (5) – Maybe I’m being a bit too harsh of Jarvis only giving him a 5 but again another player who hasn’t featured much due to injury! The games he did play I liked what I saw, he was a decent enough target man who was holding the ball up and doing flick-ons to create attacks, hopefully he can get fit and stay fit through this season, plus bag some goals as well.
Corie Andrews (6) – Again with Corie he probably hasn’t played as well as he would have liked. At times has looked way off the pace and not match fit, and has spurned some great chances that you’d expect a striker to tuck away. He has good movement but needs to be more clinical in front of goal. A 6 rating is more than adequate for Andrews’ pre-season!
Olaf Koszela (6) – A make or break season for Olaf I feel. For years he’s been classed as a youngster but he’s now in his 20s and needs to start being a regular contributor in the National League, yes for Torquay, though he does play wider at times which doesn’t suit his game. Took his goal well against Buckland but he really needs to get his head down this season, as Goodwin, Andrews and Jarvis are all going to be ahead of him in the pecking order.
Brandon Quinn and Jack Winsor were probably the couple of youngsters that had the most game time during pre-season and both gave good accounts of themselves, especially Quinn grabbing a goal away at Exmouth.
Not long to go now until the Oldham game, see you Plainmoor!