Dartford did us a big favour by doing the double over Woking but after Woking’s late late winner on Tuesday we need another win to do the double over them and who knows that could see us back top with an in form Welling hosting Woking.
TUST are hosting another fan’s zone session pre match with the usual activities. However, one eye is always on the weather with the state of our pitch and presently heavy rainfall is forecast during the match but dry beforehand so hopefully game on and we can get through this. Gusts of over 50mph are forecast so not ideal.
Kalala came on as a substitute last Saturday to break the deadlock so to start or not the start? Dickson also did well but would be surprised to see him start. Otherwise I think it will be the same players starting this game. COYY
Latest forecast from the Met Office is for it to remain dry to about 4pm with initially light rain before heavy rain from around five so if this holds the match should go ahead ok,
Apart from the long term Edwards injury only Andrews struggled to be fit for this game with a foot injury and although x rays confirmed nothing broken and he trained yesterday I wonder if he will be rested with both Kalala and Dickson able to play on the left if Reid retains his place on the right?
The first to present his case seems right, till another comes forward and questions him.
What a gutsy performance that was. The way the players dug in defended well against a very strong wind and pressed Dartford after the sending off was incredible. Come the end of the match we still looked like we could score more goals admittedly with a strong gale at our backs. Two more great finishes to add to JR's total when it looked like it was going to be another one of those afternoons where things conspired against us. Oddly it looked like Dartford were the team playing with ten men right up until full time. Tactically I thought GJ got it spot on we were fortunate to have a direct replacement for Niate in Sendles White who performed well alongside Cameron and later on bringing on the experienced Ryan Dickson for Kalala who had tormented the Dartford left wing back all afternoon and was never afraid to attack defenders and run with the ball. Asa Hall a storming game and ran the show in midfield aided by a strong and determined show from Connor Lee Evans who looked to be back to his best today. Tremendous spirit and fantastic support around the ground today and a thoroughly deserved three points against the odds. Shame Woking came back to draw once again in injury time but we have made up some ground again today so not too disappointed. Niate a little unlucky perhaps and was caught out with the flight of the ball in the wind initially and tried and I thought got to the ball when tackling the Dartford forward. But rules are rules and I wasnt surprised to see th ered card come aour=t as he was adjudged to be the last defender. Never seems to be any consistency though and when the Darford No5 scythed down Dickson late on it looked a certain sending off for a dangerous and potentially leg breaking challenge but we all know how inconsistent the standard of refereeing is at this level. Buoyed by the performance today that's for sure these boys really do want this title.
My education started when I left Highweek School for boys..
Make no mistake about it, this was a terrific performance in adversity and must rank as one of our best so far this season. Down to 10 men after just 13 minutes with Niate a little harshly being sent off for a "professional foul"; a strong wind blowing against Torquay in the first half - the omens were not good. In fact I don't think I have ever seen Torquay win before with 10 men, I've seen us lose playing against 10 men! Torquay teams of old would not have coped in this situation and remember this Torquay team is very youthful and inexperienced. But Johnson played his substitutions perfectly and Torquay came out worthy winners. Crowd 2,284 with 64 away, sponsors MOTM going to two goal hero Reid. In fact there were many outstanding performances today and no-one played better in my opinion than right back Wynter or captain marvel Hall.
Torquay did not panic, they dug in, off came Keating and on Sendles-White when Niate got sent off. In effect Torquay played with Reid as a lone striker as Janneh took Keating's position on the wing. Playing against a strong wind, Torquay sensibly kept the ball on the deck and played a good passing game and still used their skill and pace up front. Most of us would have settled for a 0-0 half-time scoreline but after some decent Torquay pressure, we took the lead. Following a corner, Reid hit it back into the mix and the ball got deflected into the corner of the goal. There were a couple of other decent Torquay chances in the first half with some slick passing. Reid could not finish off a 1-on-1 and Torquay had a strong claim for a penalty near half-time waved away for hand ball.
Dartford raised their game early in the second half and there were some fine blocking tackles from Torquay and Evans expertly saved one shot off the line. MacDonald was largely untroubled for the entire match thanks to Torquay's superb defending. But Dartford faded and Johnson made a masterstoke of replacing Kalala for Dickson. Dickson was absolutely outstanding for the remainder of the match on the left wing. It was thanks to Dickson winning a header on the half way line that led to Torquay's second goal. With the wind in their favour, Torquay rightly tried long range shots in the second half. Janneh's effort was parried and Reid finished off the rebound at close range. Torquay kept good possession football, dug in and you forgot they only had 10 men. Vincent replaced Hall near the end and did a good job in central midfield. Janneh hobbled off injured and for a while Torquay were playing with 9 men.
The entire team were heroes today aided by having an expert manager to guide them through a very difficult situation. Torquay clearly have the character and ability to go on and win the league. Even if they don't today was another case to be very proud of our team under Johnson and will long live in my memory. A fantastic achievement today!
I think that may have been one of the best performances of the season in very difficult weather conditions, against an in-form team that have recently done the double against Woking and whom were made to look very ordinary with us having just 10 men for the majority of the match.
Kicking towards the family stand into the teeth of a gale meant a slow start not helped by the sending-off of Niate. My initial feeling was that their striker received the ball in an offside position and Niate was therefore the wrong side of him but no flag and the foul he committed was a red card all day long with the ref confirming this after speaking to the Lino.
Sendles-White then came on for Keating with Jannah on the wing but with a license to support Reid when we were in possession of the ball. As the half continued we started to assert ourselves and looked the team that was most likely to score first. In fact I can’t recall MacDonald having to make a save in the first 45, just a couple of shots over the bar to contend with.
The goal came from a corner that was only half cleared to Reid whose well taken shot from just inside the area was deflected into the net to the delight of Plainmoor. We had a couple of good other opportunities with Kalala forcing a very good save from their keeper which was otherwise destined to see the ball nestle into the top right corner and a cross into the area seemed to come straight off a defender’s arm with the resultant penalty shout turned down when on another day would have been given.
Dartford did apply a bit of pressure in the early part of the second half with a shot from the edge of the area having to be cleared off the line (Cameron?) and a slightly deflected close range shot thankfully going straight to the hands of MacDonald. That was as good as it got for them though. Playing into the wind and on a heavy pitch it seemed that their legs went first and there was very little threat from them in the last quarter of the game.
The game was put to bed midway through the second half after a good move saw Janneh able to fire a shot from the edge of the area when again their keeper pulled out a good save but Reidy (who else!) was there first to knock the loose ball into the net. Special mention must go to him as playing on his own upfront meant a lot of extra running particularly when pressurising defenders so to still be in the right place at the right time was a great effort.
Everyone raised their game. Thought Lemonheigh-Evans was back to the level he set before Christmas. Sendles-White slotted right back in and no scares there. Dickson showed why he gained all the plaudits last week at Billericay and draw a foul that again on another day may have been red but was probably just a yellow. MacDonald still needs to be careful when he comes out for the ball as almost caught out once or twice.
Perhaps most satisfying was another clean sheet, with the goals we score, that is almost an guarantee of a win!
The first to present his case seems right, till another comes forward and questions him.