THE TT BLOG by Dom Roman


Dom Roman – @DomRoman


Is the end near for Gary Johnson? That’s the big question at the moment. It’s sad that we’ve come to this point. Managers have come and gone over the years – some good, some average and some tragic…but Gary Johnson has always been our ‘sure thing’. A manager so experienced and laden with achievements, we’ve generally felt lucky to have him onboard at the club. Not many new managers could come in with such gusto and reinvigorate a mid-table NLS team so dramatically, bringing joy, fist pumps and victories back to Plainmoor at the same time. We all loved him for that I’m sure, and the memories will linger for a while.

But as quick as better times can roll in at Torquay United, so can misery, and current life as a Gull is without doubt miserable. We can question the owners, their plans for the club and support for Gary Johnson, we can question his brother’s recruitment and we can question this squad of players, but the buck has to stop at the manager’s door. He has the responsibility at the club to bring these elements together and deliver us a football team to be proud of, and at this very moment he’s failing.

The team is struggling to achieve anything in a stubbornly repetitive 3-5-2, looking imbalanced and open to counter attacks. They play in patches, struggling to find any consistency in their play and the all-important end-product, with creativity and imagination lacking throughout. Overall they are disjointed, lacking trust in each other and the necessary team work to win games, whilst also not having the strength and fitness to battle to the end of the 90 minutes (injuries again coming thick and fast). No question, we are in a right state and Gary is struggling to come up with the appropriate answers.

The facts for this season so far speak for themselves:

– Two wins in 13 games

– Only 9 goals scored so far and 6 scoreless games

– No points gained when the opposition has scored first

– No wins at Plainmoor

– Bottom of the league with 9 points and -14 goal difference

Perhaps without his reputation and popularity amongst the Yellow Army he may have gone already? Who knows. The owners are too mysterious to judge, only heard from in snippets and releasing brief statements that are more likely to talk about a new ground than matters on the pitch. They showed little sentiment in shoving Nicho and Owers out the door, but maybe they are in too deep with GJ to pull the trigger. Certainly when asked, Gary talks about them positively, and this seemingly harmonious relationship could yet ride out the storm and see Johnson’s time at United go on a lot longer.

Saturday could be his last hurrah, a defeat to Hampton & Richmond would take this club to it’s lowest ebb under Gary Johnson and going by our feedback from supporters this week, changing manager would meet with plenty of approval. Understandable, being rock bottom of the league tends to focus minds, but I hope it doesn’t come to that. A season can, after all, turn on some lucky moments and a couple of positive results, though whether this limited team is up to it is very debatable. However, let’s not get caught in a negative mindset so much that we stop supporting the team. If you’re secretly rooting for a defeat so that a managerial change is made, then you’re reading from the wrong ‘supporting a football club’ manual.

No predictions from me on what’s upcoming, except that Saturday’s match can go either way and Hampton will have no fear coming to Torquay. Gary Johnson could yet salvage results and something positive from this season (which would be anything safely away from the relegation zone at this point), or the owners could surprise us with an excellent managerial appointment that spurs us into life…or as many fear, we could choose the wrong manager to come in and end up pining for the old one. Only 13 games in and Torquay United once again seem to be on a knife edge. See you at a nervy Plainmoor, and as always, support the lads.

PS – Check out our latest YouTube episodes posted this week, link below.








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I simply live and breathe Football and have supported Torquay United since 1989. I am a season ticket holder on Bristows and a Trust member. I set up TorquayTalk in 2017 to give true supporters a voice and honest opinions on their club.

One thought on “THE TT BLOG by Dom Roman

  1. Although we cannot ignore reality with our current position I would still point out that we have lost,on paper ,a complete team in the last two seasons!
    Of course Gary is not going to labour or harp on about that, he has a job to do!
    I have watched Torquay for nearly 70 years and I can’t remember, and I stand to be corrected, a successful Torquay Team built from scratch in less than 3 or 4 years, and ,don’t forget in the period 1965 to 1980 we signed Division 1 players to help us through.
    That ain’t gonna happen again!
    Of course we’re not good enough…..but, let’s look again at Xmas and if there’s no improvement I will willingly accept what the Doomsters say…..but ..I have a feeling I will still be supporting MYTEAM!
    Cmon you Gulls


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