FAN ZONE 30/06/2022
TORQUAY UNITED WALKERS EARN A CRISP DOUBLE AND BOSS GARY IS VERY PLEASED WITH HIS SUMMER TRANSFER BUSINESS
While the Women’s team won the Devon FA Cup Final back in April and Chris Todd’s Under 18s had success with a league and cup treble, step forward the latest Torquay United team into the roll of honour, the Walking Football team - the Yellows. For these dedicated footballers have achieved further glory for the club with a league and cup double.
The Yellows - and the ‘B’ team the Blues - are run by the Torquay United Community Sports Trust (TUCST) with manager Matt Anthony and his assistant Jay Carter looking after the sides.
These over 50s players won the Taking Care Division without losing a game with a record boasting played 18, won 15 and drawing three. They certainly clinched the title as runaway leaders twenty four points clear of their nearest rivals.
Last week, at Coach Road, they won the Devon FA Cup.
Delighted Yellows’ skipper Steve Meadows had this to say to Fans’ Zone, “We are a group of great players, all different in many ways but we gel together as a great team with great team spirit.”
Meadows continued, “I’m proud of all my team mates but thanks too to our coaches Matt Anthony and Jay Carter.”
The Yellows are made up of Garry Evans, Dave Mason, Dave Haycock, Steve Meadows, Jeff Gilbert, Don Ford, Clive Pope and Martin Passmoor.
For those who might be interested in playing, there are eight in a team with six on the pitch at any one time with two rolling subs.
The team spirit Meadows talks about is shown by the family feel of the group with good news for team member Billy Hartstein whose season was cut short back in November due to a brain aneurysm as he is to be awarded a winner’s medal.
The team is not resting on its laurels as Meadows explains, “We entered the National Cup competition and have played some great football against good opposition defeating Plymouth Argyle 4-1 in the First Round.” Last week they defeated Eastleigh 3-2 to reach the South West Regional Final.
With their winning formula don’t bet against their reaching the National Finals at Lilleshall in September.
TUST has been supporting another club in the community through sponsoring Stroke City Torbay, a walking football team for stroke survivors and their supporters. This is a group of mixed ages of all abilities for both men and women who enjoy playing football on Tuesday evenings at the Torbay Leisure Centre, Clennon Valley. For anyone interested in joining you can find out more information at email@example.com.
United supporters are feeling starved of transfer news but stay calm! Boss Gary Johnson speaking to the Non-League Paper had this to say at the weekend, “There’s no need for doom and gloom. We’re actually very pleased with our business at the moment. Really pleased, in fact.”
He added, “When the names come out, people will inevitably go ‘who?’ The players we’re signing won’t have supporters jumping up in the air but as I always say, they ain’t marquee players now but they will be marquee players by the time we’re finished with them.”
For the Yellow Army worried about when we’re going to hear the names of the new players Johnson had this to say, “We don’t tend to announce people that we’ve signed when they sign.
The contracts don’t get registered until July 1 and anything can happen before then. We just keep it quiet, then at the end of the day we announce them all.” With a press conference called for Friday, sounds as if all will be revealed.
Even before a ball’s been kicked the early betting odds are out with the Gulls priced at 16/1 which makes them sixth favourites behind (in order) Wrexham (7/5), Notts County (15/2), Solihull Moors (15/2), Chesterfield (11/1), Dagenham & Redbridge (14/1).
“Everybody is going to say that they want to be in the play-offs before the season starts. We’re no different but within that, I think there are six or seven teams who are saying that they have to win the league - and we’re in that as well,” says Johnson.
He concludes, “You’ve got to go into it [the new season] aiming to win the league and you’ve got to recruit with that aim in mind. Otherwise, what’s the point?”
Seems like the doubters are in for a pleasant surprise.
Well done to Damon Lathrope whose playing career was cruelly cut short on being appointed Head Coach of Watford FC Women. Lathrope, 32, is a UEFA A Licence coach and a manager with a bright future.
United announced last week the launch of ‘Friends of TUWFC’ - for a £100 donation Friends of Torquay United Women will receive special benefits including two tickets in the Family Stand for a forthcoming home National League match, a certificate and a listing on the TUWFC website. Your funds will go towards supplying the squad with new training gear alongside the £1,500 TUST has contributed towards new tracksuits.
For those of you who listen to the Yellow Army podcast you’ll have heard me talking about all things Torquay United and TUST. You can join a growing number who are becoming members, at 50p per week, by going to www.tust.co.uk and you may have heard our radio ad on Palm Torbay Radio.
Reader Richard Cox asks about the goal nets at Plainmoor. He says we have a great new pitch so he hopes the club have purchased white nets. As he says, “There is nothing like seeing goals scored into a brilliant white net.”
Last week’s questions were answered with a resounding no to matches being reduced to 60 minutes but a big yes to the return of ball boys/girls at Plainmoor. Their presence would, as one reader put it, speed up the game but added, “Please can referees make players take the throw from where the ball went out.” We know what he means!
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