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  • Writer's pictureTUST

Fan Zone 30/12/2022



For those hoping for a Boxing Day pick-me-up to see Torquay United give its long suffering Yellow Army a Christmas cracker there would have been many going home afterwards prepared to look forward to yet more turkey and Christmas pudding.

It was another disappointing home performance as Torquay United threw away three points, a much needed morale boosting second home league win of the season as well as climbing out of the bottom four.

In front of 3,805 United should have been comfortably ahead at half-time with more goals to show than just the lone header from Mark Ellis. In the end United were grateful to cling on to a point.

It was yet another National League match with bemusing refereeing decisions. How Dylan Crowe was the only player to be sent off is puzzling. Although United manager Gary Johnson was given one right at the end of the match.

With a winner looking likely for the away side as the minutes ticked by, United were mightily relieved to hear the final whistle as by that time they were down to nine.

Few players came out of the match in credit but both Shaun Donnellan and Mark Halstead saved the day on more than one occasion.

This result sets up an intriguing return on New Year’s Day at Huish Park. United need to go into the New Year on the front foot with surely January bringing about some wheeling and dealing in the transfer market.


Whilst 2022 on the pitch has been one to forget, off it the club has made great strides with its #One Club #One Community projects. Looking at the review of the year on the club’s website you will read a lengthy and impressive review of the year as, month-by-month, the club has been instrumental in setting up an amazing number of community projects ranging from free match day tickets to deserving local causes, supporting mental welfare local charities through to VIP Children’s treats.


Non-League Boxing Day Crowd Watch: Wrexham had a season’s best 10,150 for their emphatic win over Solihull Moors, Notts County pulled in 9,789 for a comfortable win over Oldham.

Southend lost at home in front of 6,660 and rock bottom Scunthorpe’s home defeat was watched by 4,156.

The Boxing Day derby in National North between Hereford FC and Kidderminster drew 3,221 while Macclesfield whose best so far this season was 3,765 had a whopping 4,512.

With Oldham and Scunthorpe struggling in the relegation zone, it’s looking grim as they turn into 2023. Only seven ex-EFL clubs have been relegated from the National League/Conference after losing their Football League status. Scarborough were the first in 2007.

In 2018 York City became the first to suffer back-to-back relegations from the EFL into the National League then into National North.


So, what’s 2023 got in store for football? All the indications are that the Government’s fan-led review White Paper will, at long last, be published. Will it, though, lead to the overhaul of football’s governance?

The introduction of an independent regulator is looking likely and maybe three-up, three-down between League 2 and the National League will be announced.

There are signs that the Premier League are going to trial, with FIFA’s permission, concussion substitutes along the lines of those used in rugby union. The FA has also said they will be launching a major clampdown on referee abuse especially at grass-roots level where matches have had to abandoned and even cancelled. A tougher stance against inappropriate behaviour and abuse will be outlined in the new document.


Ex-Gull Alex Fletcher who suffered horrific head injuries after colliding with a perimeter wall whilst playing for Bath City made an emotional return before the Boxing Day fixture against Chippenham to thank everyone for their support as he continues on the recovery path.



For those of you still intending to enter this year’s quiz here are the questions again:

1. In January Stephen Duke-McKenna joined United from which Championship club?

2. What international recognition did Armani Little and Ben Wynter get in March?

3. Which former United and Manchester United manager died in March?

4. What success did Torquay United Women have in April after a penalty shoot-out?

5. United’s Under-18s won the treble, League and two cups. Who was their manager?

6. Who was United’s Player of the Season for 2021-2022?

7. Will Goodwin joined in July on loan from which EFL club?

8. Which ex-Gull returned to Plainmoor to be Head of Youth?

9. 87,192 were at Wembley in August to witness what in the Women’s Euro Final?

10. Which ex-Gull favourite re-joined the club on loan from Barrow?

11. Who scored these United goals a) the late goal in the 4-4 draw on TV with Altrincham, b) the winning goal at Hampton and c) in the home FA Cup draw with Derby County?

12. What did TUST launch with the club in November?

Your entry should be sent with your name and address to: or Twitter: @FanszoneT

All correct answers could win one lucky reader a £20 Torquay United club shop gift voucher. Closing date for entries is Saturday December 31 2022 at 12noon. Good luck! Question setter’s decision is final.


So, into 2023 we tread and we all hope for an upturn in fortunes starting at Yeovil on New Year’s Day.

If you can’t make the game don’t forget the NationalLeagueTV live streaming for £9.50.





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