Search
  • TUST

FANS' ZONE 14/01/2022




UNITED’S RACE INTO 2-0 LEAD COMES UNSTUCK IN A GLUEPOT BUT MATCH IS AN ENTERTAINING HIT


The build up to this National League duel centred on current form, visitors Dagenham & Redbridge were the Fab Four with twelve points from the last twelve while Torquay were, to re-write a Meat Loaf hit, ‘Four out of Five Ain’t Bad’, had twelve points from their last fifteen.

On a glue pot of a pitch it turned out honours even although to be fair after the first twenty minutes when the Gulls raced into a 2-0 lead and it could or should have been more, the next hour belonged to the best side seen at Plainmoor this season, who after Danny Wright’s goal, in a brief team gathering seemed to say ’We Can Work It Out’. Once Balanta, surely destined for a big money move, had equalised, it looked as if there would be only one winner but with dogged determination United held on.

Congratulations to Dan Martin for making the Non-League Paper Team of the Day but for many the Man of the Match award should have gone to Shaun MacDonald for a string of fine saves which helped Torquay cling on to a point. Not for the first time this season Joe Lewis was in the Vanarama Team of the Week.

The entertaining contest certainly was a case of Daggers drawn as the visitors, who moved up to fourth, went to catch their ‘Ticket To Ride’ train home.

And a word here to the club’s ownership for the work carried out last Summer on the pitch for, with the amount of rain that fell in the days before the match, in previous years this game would certainly have been called off.

A draw then was a point gained and was the first home one this season against a side Torquay had taken seven matches to actually score against, the previous six meetings amazingly without a goal from United; thank you Asa Hall after 25 seconds!

A word, too, about Stephen Wearne, the newest loan signing, who had a decent debut receiving a deserved round of applause as he made his way around the Popside and Family Stand back to the dugout when substituted.

**************

National League Crowd Watch: Without the ‘bigger’ clubs playing Torquay’s 2,339 was the largest of the day followed by Halifax 1,822, Aldershot 1,714, Bromley 1,411 and Weymouth 1,335.

In the North Lee Mansell’s Gloucester City were watched by 1,103 and in the South 1,345 saw a 1-1 draw between Dartford and Dulwich Hamlet.

Big congratulations to Boreham Wood, 2-0 winners over AFC Wimbledon with 3,501 in attendance and to Kidderminster Harriers winning 2-1 over Reading in front of 5,178 for keeping the non-league flag flying in the FA Cup while Yeovil had 7,818 in their 3-1 defeat to AFC Bournemouth.

This seems like a boom time for non-league football for attendances with record crowds for many sides over Christmas and New Year, these are just a few examples: Macclesfield v Winsford 4,353, Bognor Regis v Worthing 2,239, Hastings United v Lancing 2,017, Bromsgrove Sporting v Stourbridge 1,658 and Falmouth Town v Penryn Athletic 1,171.

**************

Some interesting food for thought stats about current goings on in football. Take for instance, the ref’s assistants, formerly known as linesmen, why do they raise their flags for offside so late? On Saturday play had carried on for some time as United attacked only for the flag to up. Mind you in the case of Dan Holman’s winner at Yeovil, when the flag should have gone up, it didn’t thankfully.

Have you also noticed how little time the ball’s in play? Gary Johnson often complains about time wasting but the latest stats suggest there’s more to this than gamesmanship. Armani Little received his crucial fifth yellow at Eastleigh for his goal celebration enabling the game to be held up - incidentally his absence on Saturday was not because Wearne’s arrival was a prelude to Little’s departure as was the speculation, but due to a dead leg in training - but so do ordinary goal celebrations typically taking up to over a minute. So much so, that Premier League stats make for sobering reading.

The average ‘ball in play’ times for season 2019-20: 55 minutes 49 seconds; 2020-21: 56 minutes 22 seconds and so far for 2021-22: 54 minutes 35 seconds. With no ball boys/girls in these Covid times to retrieve a ball, spectators are being short changed their entrance fees. Seems as if the fourth officials’ added times should, at the very least, be doubled. What do you think?

**************

More National League managers are calling for a promotion shake-up. Chesterfield’s boss James Rowe says, “I don’t really call it non-league anymore,” adding, “It’s a really good league with really healthy attendances and I think that needs to be rewarded with more spots going into the EFL.”

Bolton manager, Ian Evatt, formerly at Barrow said, “It’s crazy the clubs in that division - the National League - there’s only one automatic promotion place.”

Grimsby’s Paul Hurst adds, “I think there should be three promotion spots and three relegation.”

Three going down might be difficult as those teams that drop out - four usually - split two into the North and two into the South.

**************

Torquay United Women: What a start for Esme Kilburn-Thompson following her transfer last week from rivals Exeter City. City’s Young Female Player of the Year last season marked her Torquay debut with a stunning hat-trick in her new team’s 10-3 victory over Middlezoy. With Danni Wyatt (2) and Alex Sheppard (2) amongst the scorers United moved up to third.

**************

If you haven’t written to your MP yet about the Fan-Led Review, there’s still time. We want as many Members of Parliament as possible to support this important piece of legislation to pass through when Tracey Crouch MP’s review is debated later in the year. See the template letter below which can be copied and pasted in to a personalised e-mail or letter.

*************

Predictions for 2022? Some of yours so far: a near miss for the play-offs; Joe Lewis for a EFL move; United go on an unbeaten run. One more week to add yours, send to: fanszone.tu@gmail.com or to Twitter: @FanszoneT.

No game this weekend as it’s an FA Trophy one so looking forward to Altrincham away on January 22.

COYY


 

TEMPLATE LETTER TO MP

YOU CAN GOOGLE THE NAME OF YOUR MP AND FIND THEIR E-MAIL OR POSTAL ADDRESS

YOU CAN ONLY CONTACT THAT MP AS LONG AS YOU HAVE AN ADDRESS IN THE CONSTITUENCY

Dear………

FAN-LED REVIEW RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FOOTBALL

As a long standing football supporter of Torquay United I am writing to you to ask for you to support the recently published Fan-Led Review recommendations as set out by Tracey Crouch MP and her team for the long-term sustainability of football in this country.

The report recognises there is a wide consensus on the need for change, from football fans in general and other stakeholders but it will need cross-party political support from MPs, like yourself, to ensure legislation is put into place.

I, therefore, respectfully urge you to put your full support behind this report to see that the necessary legislation is passed as quickly as possible.

Yours sincerely,


 

SUPPORT TUST - SUPPORT YOUR COMMUNITY


 



10 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All