The S24 Preview: Torquay United v Southend United
Updated Friday, 18th February 2011
One win in 24 years, on Boxing Day 1999, in 12 visits to Plainmoor; now you're in a good mood let's find out more about Gulls v Shrimpers on Saturday, February 19th, 2011; kick-off 15.00.
It's a mugs game this previewing, one minute you're getting the right team, the right score, and even the guy who grabs the winner; the next, wrong team, by a few, and wrong result, by a few.
Blues boss Paul Sturrock bowled me a googly with his freshning up the side against Accrington, which I kept going for Wycombe, or maybe he was just making excuses after the Chesterfield defeat, but in the end it was only Matt Phillips for the still missed Bilel Mohsni, and, well, who cares, we won!
As for Torquay, who knows after the injury scare stories, and Luke Prosser returning, now that is scary, as Luggy refuses to tell us whose injured, outside striker Harry Crawford, so Kyle Asante will make the bench this time out, and who knows, maybe this week Lee Sawyer will get a start, maybe.
In the ned I'm keeping the side that started against the Chairboys but of course expect changes especially at the back, Johnny Herd and Miguel Comminges may both see action.
Until kick-off Saturday we'll ahve to wait and see, the result, I'll be happy with 1-1 and a point, as I was on Tuesday, and look what happened there!
Possible Southend United: Evans, Clohessy, Phillips, Barker, Gilbert, Ferdinand, Grant, Easton, Hall, Sturrock, Corr.
Subs: Morris, Herd, Prosser, Comminges, Sawyer, Soares, Asante.
COME ON YOU BLUES!!!!!
Gulls boss Paul Buckle is set to name an unchanged side from the 1-0 win over Burton Albion (report and team below), that was the side's third league win in a row and the third consequtive match they had kept a clean sheet.
On-loan Northampton winger Ryan Gilligan has been coming on as a substitute for the last two games.
Striker Chris Zebroski will continue to play in an unfamiliar wide position as Jake Robinson and Billy Kee will take the central strikers role. Zebroski scored in the reverse fixture when the Shrimpers ran out 2-1 winners at Roots Hall, ending the Gulls then unbeaten league record.
With the top scorer Elliot Benyon off to Swindon Town, Zebroski is now the Gulls main threat up front but is being asked to play wide at the moment.
Player details here:
Last time Out
Torquay United 1 Burton Albion 0 (played on Tuesday, February 15th, 2011.)
Beeb Highlights: http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/eng_div_3/9400068.stm
A good old fashioned six-pointer
The ground is basic and small, but has steadily improved over the years.
Differing from other clubs, the Directors Box is situated behind one goal, in the Yelverton Properties Family Stand, rather than being to the side of the pitch. This is a neat, attractive, covered all seater stand.
The other end is a small covered terrace, built in 2000 to replace a former open terrace. It also boosted the atmosphere within the ground. A new Police control box has been constructed to one side of this stand. Both sides are covered stands.
At one side is the covered, seated Main Stand, with a small amount of terracing to the front. It runs for just over half the length of the pitch. The other side is a newish, small covered terrace, called the Carlsberg Popular Terrace. It looks slightly odd, having a television gantry perched on its roof.
Outside the ground behind the home end and next to the Club shop is a programme shop which is worth a look. The ground is completed by a set of four old style looking floodlight pylons.
Club wish to replace the existing Main Stand with a new 1,750 capacity all-seater stand. It will include new dressing rooms, disabled facilities and a new press box. This will take Plainmoor's capacity up to about 6,500.
Planning permission has now been approved and construction of the new stand may commence before the end of the 2010/11 season. Plans of the new stand can be viewed on the Torquay United website.
Around 1,100 away supporters can be accommodated in the Sparkworld Away Stand, at one end of the ground. The club also makes 200 seats available to away supporters in the covered Main Stand. Additionally there is a small terraced area that can be made available adjacent to the Main Stand, but this area is open to the elements.
The Sparkworld Away terrace is covered and the acoustics are good, meaning that relatively few away supporters can still really make some noise from this area.
Although the facilities are fairly basic, this was compensated by some good banter between the away fans and the stewards, plus the catering outlet was doing a roaring trade in selling hot pasties. All in all a good day out.
It's pay on the day only for standing & sitting.
Full details here:
Lovely, sunny intervals and 12c's...........after heavy overnight rain, oh shit!
The man in the middle is David Coote from Nottinghamshire.
A full interview with him here: http://refworld.com/referee/2248/1.
The Ms. Sian Massey; no sexism here please, but would you? (I'll sack myself!)
His assistants are Sian Massey from Coventry and Tim Wood from Gloucester; The fourth official is Andrew Turner from Devon.
Friday, February 18th: Port Vale 2 Bradford City 1
Saturday, February 19th; (all kick-offs 15.00): Cheltenham v Barnet, Crewe v Stevenage, Gillingham v Bury, Hereford v Burton Albion, Lincoln City v Chesterfield, Morecambe v Oxford Utd, Northampton v Aldershot, Rotherham v Shrewsbury, Stockport v Macclesfield, Torquay v Southend, Wycombe v Accrington Stanley.
Torquay United (to win) - 15/13, Draw - 5/2, Southend (to win) - 13/5.
By Coach go here:
PUB AND PIES
For the best drinking around the ground and in the town go here:
SOMEWHERE TO LAY YOUR HAT
For an overnight stay:
The original Torquay United was formed in 1899 by a group of school-leavers under the guidance of Sergeant-Major Edward Tomney. The newly founded club played its inaugural match against an Upton Cricket Club XI on one of Farmer John Wright's fields, which was situated at the top of Penny's Hill, on Teignmouth Road on the site of modern Parkhurst Road.
After a season of friendlies the club joined the East Devon League and moved into the Recreation Ground, their home for the next four years, Plainmoor being occupied by Torquay Athletic Rugby Club at this time in a reversal of the current situation.
In 1904 Athletic secured the lease on the Recreation Ground from underneath United and Torquay and District League rivals Ellacombe took over the lease of Plainmoor leaving United homeless for the first time in their existence and facilitating a return to the farmers fields on Teignmouth Road, however the club was on the move again when the fields were sold to be developed into what would later be known as Parkhurst Road.
United soon found another home, sharing with Torquay Cricket Club in nearby Cricketfield Road (a site still used for football in the modern day by South Devon League side Upton Athletic) for four years and during that time won their first honour, the Torquay and District League title in 1909.
Following this breakthrough for the club, the club merged with local rivals Ellacombe in 1910, adopted the name Torquay Town and finally moved into Plainmoor where they would remain to the modern day, during this period the ground was shared with the team's remaining local rival Babbacombe FC. Both sides were playing in the same league, the Plymouth and District League alongside the reserve teams of Exeter City and Plymouth Argyle, Torquay Town would later win the league in the 1911-12 season.
On August 8th 2009, Torquay marked their return to Football League 2 with a 2-0 victory at home to Chesterfield. Their first football league goal since 2007 was scored by new loan signing Scott Rendell, who featured against Torquay in the Conference National Play-Off final, whilst on loan at Cambridge United.
A run of poor results left The Gulls struggling near the bottom of the table for most of the season. There was a brief revival in December which saw Torquay beat fellow strugglers Cheltenham Town 3-0, and bottom side Darlington 5-0, before an Elliot Benyon hat-trick against Stockport County fired the Yellows into the 3rd round of the FA Cup.
Buckle's side failed to continue their form in 2010, and the bad results combined with the departures of Wembley goalscorers Chris Hargreaves and Tim Sills, led to some nervous times at the club. As a reaction to these moves, Nicky Wroe replaced Hargreaves as club captain, and Guy Branston was brought to the club on loan from Burton Albion (the deal was made permanent in the summer) to bring some much needed experience in.
A fantastic end to the season put an end to any relegation fears, with Torquay embarking on an undefeated run of 8 games, which included 6 wins and 7 consecutive clean sheets (a new club record for minutes without conceding). The highlight of this winning run was a 5-0 win over a Rochdale side who were top of the league at the time of the game.
On the final day of the season Torquay secured a credible 17th placed finish following a 0-0 draw with league winners Notts County. This was the 2nd time in as many seasons that Plainmoor had played host to the final day celebrations of the league champions (Burton Albion were crowned as Conference Champions at Plainmoor in 2009).
(For a more comprehensive history of the club, go here: