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The Big Picture - Update


THE BIG PICTURE - UPDATE


Yesterday’s TUST Big Picture statement has generated a lot of interest.  You can read it here: TUST Update - The Big Picture


 We have considered whether a Fans Forum would be useful but at the present time there is too much uncertainty and not a lot we can add to the statement.  We will, of course, consider a forum if the need arises.




FAN ZONE



TUST's Chair, Nick Brodrick's column in this week's Herald Express - updated for the latest news.


SEVERAL  INTERESTED  PARTIES  BEGIN  TO  EMERGE  TO  TAKE  OVER 


UNITEDCREDIT  TO  WEYMOUTH  FOR  THEIR  GENEROUS  GESTURE


NEW  LAWS  AGREED  FOR  NEXT  SEASON  BUT  NO  BLUE  CARDS


Whilst it is said that a week is a long time in politics, it has certainly been one in the history of Torquay United. Just ten working days ago owner Clarke Osborne dropped his bombshell - no more funding.


By all accounts there has been plenty of interest and a number of interested parties have signed Non-Disclosure Agreements which sets off the process of their finding more information about the financial state of the club and for those overseeing the process, to find out if these people have proof of the required funding.


The big question is whether a deal can be agreed before or after administration; clearly if it happened after then United would be automatically docked ten points as well as being placed under a transfer embargo - no players in or out. There’s also the question of Osborne’s debt.


If points were to be deducted United’s total would drop to 38, four points above the relegation zone and in turn that will put extra pressure on Aaron Downes and the players who will also be concerned about being paid their March salaries at the end of the month.


With matches slipping away, eleven left, United could do with a few wins, for dropping into the Southern League would be unthinkable.


*****


Last Saturday United travelled along the Jurassic Coast to take on Weymouth who were desperate for points too. The previous weekend Plainmoor hosted over 3,600 fans and at the Bob Lucas Stadium the Yellow Army turned up in impressive numbers singing their hearts out to give the hosts their highest attendance of the season, 2,008.


The football certainly wasn’t a classic with a goal apiece to each side in the first half, a great opener from Arkell Jude-Boyd, who had a stand-out performance, which got him a place in the Non-League Paper Team of the Day. Unfortunately, the home side drew level on the stroke of half time.


In the second half United attacked the goal with the Torquay fans behind it trying to suck the ball into the net. There were a couple of chances but neither went in.


*****


It is in times of adversity that the football family comes together and on behalf of TUST, Torquay United Football Club and the Yellow Army I was able to thank the Weymouth chairman Paul Maitland for his club’s amazingly generous gesture of donating £5 from every adult away ticket sold on BBC Radio Solent’s Breakfast Show on Monday. This money, plus £253 from a bucket collection and £81 from badge sales, is being given to TUST to pass to the club towards March’s players’ and staff salary bill.


Maitland spoke about the divide between the Premier League and grass-roots football and the importance of ‘We Stand Together’, Weymouth sold badges with this on at Saturday’s game.


But it looks as if little is going to change to close the gap between the haves and have-nots until the Football Governance Bill goes through Parliament after which an independent regulator will be in place. After which every club will have a Fan Advisory Board. At Torquay there was the promise of a Steering Group which should have been chosen by now but is on hold. Hopefully a new owner will address this on taking over.


*****


Last Sunday’s Non-League Paper carried a full page article written by TalkSport presenter and Torquay fan Charlie Baker. It was a great personal emotive piece and well worth a read and he very kindly has donated his fee for writing it to TUST.


*****


Only a few weeks ahead of Clarke Osborne’s decision Rochdale’s chairman announced they needed £2m to avoid liquidation by the end of the month but in recent days they seem to have been ‘saved’ by Texas company World Soccer Holdings, for thanks to the Wrexham story, there is a lot of interest from America to own English football clubs. Could that happen here?


*****


On Saturday the International Football Association Board (IFAB) met to discuss various law changes. A few months ago a blue card looked like being trialled at professional level but this card will now only be used at grass-roots and youth levels.


IFAB, though, has approved trials at League 1 & 2 level to stop goalkeepers time wasting. Firstly, referees will be stricter punishing keepers who hold on to the ball for more than six seconds.


Should a keeper hang on to the ball for a maximum of eight seconds they will be punished with either a corner or throw-in level with the penalty spot instead of an indirect free-kick.


*****


Back in National South how would you fancy supporting Truro City? They’re the nomads of football as with no home ground they’ve played the majority of their ‘home’ fixtures at Plymouth Parkway before ground sharing at Taunton where they have played only once. So, on Saturday their fans had to travel 195 miles to Gloucester City’s ground … well, at least they beat their landlords Taunton Town 2-0. But where next? Not Plainmoor surely.


*****


Non-League Crowd Watch: Scunthorpe 7,511, Oldham 6,309, Hartlepool 4,769, Macclesfield 3,171.


Dartford are United’s opponents on Saturday with Torquay only one win in nine when defeating Dover on January 20.


We need another big gate, bring a friend, buy drinks and merchandise from the club shop.


Contact details: fanszone.tu@gmail.com


COYY










 


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