30 January 2014

Massey is proud of Truro after gritty display at Stourbridge (WMNews)

Western Morning News

Manager Steve Massey was full of praise for the “grit and steel” showed by his Truro City team in Tuesday’s 2-2 Southern League Premier Division draw at Stourbridge, when they were only denied victory by a late equaliser.

They are words which would not have been associated with the Cornish team earlier in the season, when they had something of a soft underbelly. But now Massey’s men have increasingly become a difficult side to beat, as evidenced by their record of just one loss (at leaders Hemel Hempstead Town) in their last eight league matches.

However, five of those games have been draws, and Massey is convinced they could have all been turned into wins.

“If we had picked up those extra ten points, we would have been on the edge of the promotion race,” he said. “It was a very good performance [at Stourbridge]. The guys grafted and I was very proud of them, and we also played some quality football.

“Three months ago, we would have been happy with a point away to a good team like Stourbridge. But we have been playing well and fancied our chances and it just shows how far we have come. There is a lot of grit and steel there now.”

Massey, though, could not hide his frustration that City had been unable to hold on for what would have been their first win of 2014. “I thought we had done enough,” he said.

Tuesday’s game was into the final minute, with City 2-1 up after goals by Olly Brokenshire (28 minutes and Ben Watson (81), when a costly error from Arran Pugh ended with a Stourbridge equaliser in the 89th minute.

Pugh, who was suffering from a gashed leg, failed to deal with a ball out wide, allowing it to be pulled back into the penalty area, where Stourbridge’s Kayleden Brown applied the finishing touch. Brown had scored the hosts’ opening goal in the 53rd minute.

It was tough on City who, after riding their luck early on at the War Memorial Athletic Ground, twice took the lead but just could not get over the line.

Massey added: “When Ben gave us the lead with less than ten minutes left, I thought we had done enough.”

City are next in action at Redditch United on Saturday.

Determined Truro Denied At Stourbridge By Brown’s Opportunism (by The Mowdog)

Source: Mowdog on the Road link here

Determined Truro Denied At Stourbridge By Brown’s Opportunism

Stourbridge 2 Truro City 2

This largely untidy game lacked pattern, although home strikers Ben Billingham and Tom Berwick caused some consternation for the guests on occasions, especially before the interval. The hosts had joy along their right flank during this period and rattled the crossbar twice, although it has to be said that Truro stuck at their passing game, even though it broke down too often when the ball reached lone striker Ben Watson, who worked hard but was given little meaningful support from Les Afful, who seemed glued to the left touchline, or Cody Cooke, who was forced to tuck in to support midfield. Olly Brokenshire made the occasional supportive run but offensively, City struggled before half-time. Brokenshire’s fine goal separated the teams at 45 minutes but even though Kayelden Brown equalised for the Glassboys early in the second-half, the expected pressure by Stourbridge failed to materialise and indeed, it was Truro who looked the likelier outfit during the second period. A goalkeeping error gave Truro a late lead but after Brokenshire squandered a great opportunity, a defensive error by City offered the hosts a welcome equaliser; Truro manager Steve Massey was so angry that he hammered a loitering football into an advertising hoarding and I decided it was politic not to pass the time of evening with him…

An early challenge by Stourbridge newcomer Berwick allowed Billingham a snap-shot from 21 yards and the ball flew just the wrong side of the left post but the opening exchanges featured two tough tackles by Truro playmaker Joe Broad and although a number of long balls were played towards the home forwards running the channels, City attempted to pass across midfield. Steve Tully and goalie Grant Fisher got into a tangle, as the ‘keeper hesitated and his right-back was forced to clear hurriedly and then a fine tackle by visiting skipper Paul Kendall cleared a moment of Stourbridge danger. A dive into a tackle by Drew Canavan brought an early caution for the Glassboy then Brown and Billingham were too slick for Truro but Berwick had strayed offside at inside-left and a chance was lost. A Billingham corner was headed too high by Will Richards, following stout defending by Truro then Ben Watson slipped a pass for Les Afful to break inside from the left but the forward’s effort at goal slithered well wide of the right upright. Another Billingham corner from the right caused real trouble for Fisher, who waved a fist at the trajectory but had turned his head, being fortunate that the ball beat everyone else too and flashed by the far post.

Brown headed a Billingham centre too high but Stourbridge should have been a goal ahead when the lively Billingham missed a great chance to score. Kendall’s clearing header fell to Brown, who slipped a pass right to Canavan and the midfielder pushed a really fine feed into the 18 yard area between Warren Daw and Arran Pugh for Billingham who was in at inside-right; he avoided a sliding tackle by Kendall but blasted a rising shot against the crossbar from 8 yards and was beaten in the air to the rebound by the tall Pugh, with Kendall heading on for Afful to complete the clearance. Afful fouled a home defender when, finally, Truro attacked, through Cody Cooke on the right but what happened next was a shock to all: City scored…

Olly Brokenshire burst onto Broad’s short pass at inside-left and his strength took him towards goal, but although he seemed to jab at the ball from 22 yards, his effort soared over the leaping Stourbridge ‘keeper Coleman and high into the net for a spectacular goal. Another strong run to the right byeline by Canavan nearly brought an instant equaliser however but Berwick’s vicious, unmarked right-foot volley from beyond the far post struck Fisher and bounced into the air, forcing the ‘keeper to jump at his left upright and fist the ball away for a corner, which Kendall headed upwards but won a free-kick from to relieve the pressure. Truro won a corner but Dan Green’s speculative 24 yard effort rose too high then after a period of offense, the ball fell for Pugh to volley but a deflection allowed Coleman to collect the spinning effort.

Truro survived another Stourbridge corner when a defender sliced the ball over his own bar; Billingham’s flag-kick was headed upwards by Kendall, only for Richards to fall and hook a lobbed 8 yard effort onto the top of the Truro crossbar. Kendall then lost possession, forcing Pugh into an unwise challenge on the dangerous Berwick and the City defender was deservedly cautioned. Billingham and Berwick combined on the right again but home skipper Sean Geddes fired too high from 24 yards. Pugh was limping somewhat by this time but Truro ended the half on the offensive only for Afful to lose out to a defender and then foul him. The half ended with Truro fortunate to be ahead but they had tried to pass the ball, albeit with little real achievement. Stourbridge looked more dangerous with their three Bs: Brown prompting, Billingham prowling and Berwick pressurising but Truro’s B, Brokenshire had broken the deadlock…

After the break, Stourbridge looked lively and Billingham’s early jaunty run at inside-right only came to an end when he was crowded out but then, the referee awarded the Glassboys a free-kick on the right from 20 yards away, when oddly, the nearby linesman, 8 yards away, saw nothing amiss. A left-foot centre was curled in, Brown jumped in a crowded penalty-area, and glanced the ball on, looking as surprised as anyone when the ball dropped inside the left vertical. No defender manned a post, despite the trajectory swerving inwards… Massey looked sour, for his coaching companion had just bellowed for the defenders to watch out for runners. They didn’t. Pugh then leaned at the far post to head Brokenshire’s fine free-kick from inside-left down and wide but Truro, although pegged back, began to assume more possession and Afful, constantly encouraged by his coaches to tackle back, showed some neat skills and from one dribble, Brokenshire picked up the ball and nearly put Watson away. Truro defended a corner and a cross well enough before Daw was replaced by Shane White and from the substitute’s throw-in, Afful slithered and stumbled inside from the left, past defenders and his right foot shot took a deflection for a fruitless corner.

Kyle Haynes replaced Francis for the hosts but then Berwick broke into the inside-left channel for Stourbridge, only to curl a right-footer beyond the far post. Kendall was now limping for Truro as his team surrendered possession but Brown drove wildly off target. Broad was then fouled in midfield with a jump-in tackle but the official ignored the challenge, allowing the hosts to drive a low shot straight at the largely untroubled Fisher. Neat play by Truro was wrecked by several offside flags, mostly against Watson, ploughing his lonely furrow in the White Tigers’ attack, but Brown drove another shot at Fisher, as the Glassboys picked up one or two loose balls in the Truro half. Berwick was surprisingly replaced by Sam Rock for the home team but Truro won a free-kick at inside-left again and when White’s far post header looped up, Pugh attempted a 7 yard overhead shot, only for the ball to rap against the toe of his boot and drift way over the goal-frame.

Incredibly, Truro took the lead again, in the closing stages of a half they had just about shaded and it was Watson who took some credit, although home goalie Coleman made a bad error. Green slipped the ball forward into the penalty-box, Watson was just onside but his low shot from 14 yards was straight at Coleman, who inexplicably allowed the ball to squirm through his legs as he crouched and it rolled into the net. Joy for Truro, agony for Coleman. Billingham was cautioned for a foul, Pugh conceded a corner, which bounced off a Stourbridge head for a goal-kick and the game edged towards a close. Then, Truro should have wrapped up three points; Watson got away at inside-left with Richards and Haynes for company and Haynes blocked the striker’s shot from 12 yards, only for Watson to set up a clear chance for Brokenshire, 16 yards out but the midfielder’s measured effort, leaning back was scooped wastefully too high. That miss would haunt Truro…

A stoppage in play resulted not in one team presenting the ball to the other but in a good old fashioned bounce-up, which led to the ball rolling towards the Truro byeline, right of the goal-frame but Pugh attempted to shield it and allow it to trickle out; Rock wouldn’t allow that and challenged, so that the ball fell neatly for Brown, 8 yards out, to flash a low near post drive into the net, past the stunned Fisher. It only remained for Brokenshire to confound the few Truro followers at the ground when he shaped to take a free-kick at the right corner of the penalty-box with his dangerous left foot; it was added-time, surely a curling shot at goal, like Messi would attempt? Er, no, maybe he was under different instructions to deliver a cross and of course Coleman punched the ball clear easily. At the death, Pugh nearly miscued in his penalty-area as Fisher grabbed a left-wing centre but each team was left with a point, something perhaps Massey would have accepted after the opening half, but not so after the second period, when he may have felt that his team had done enough to secure the victory.

Stourbridge appeared to fade badly after the interval and attacked more or less on the break, as Truro fiddled the ball around in midfield attempting to find a free man, mostly in vain, in truth. Brown was Stourbridge’s saviour really, although Billingham contributed a huge amount, rarely allowing Pugh or Kendall any comfort. For the visitors, Brokenshire was often good, Watson ran hard but leader Kendall was probably their most valuable performer for his defensive prowess, especially before the break.

I had fielded several balls from the terracing behind the goal, as Truro’s replacements warmed up before the game and one shot struck the underside of the roof, showering the terrace steps with rust and debris, narrowly missing my head but when I volleyed another ball back, instead of it rebounding from the barrier of the surrounding fence, it slammed back over my head from the back of the crossbar. I’ve never done that before, even though it wasn’t a challenge and Truro’s reserve ‘keeper was visibly amused, unlike Steve Massey at the end of this game…


Stourbridge: Dean Coleman, Drew Canavan, Will Richards; Netan Sansara, Sean Geddes (Capt), Andre Francis; Louis Harris, Leon Broadhurst, Kayelden Brown, Ben Billingham, Tom Berwick.

Subs: Kyle Haynes, Jordan Fitzpatrick, Sam Rock, Sam Tye, Jordan Murphy.

Truro: Grant Fisher, Steve Tully, Warren Daw; Paul Kendall (Capt), Arran Pugh, Joe Broad; Cody Cooke, Dan Green, Ben Watson, Olly Brokenshire, Les Afful.

Subs: Liam Eddy, Jared Sims, Jordan Copp, Shane White, Gildin (gk).

29 January 2014

Truro City denied victory by last gasp Stourbridge equaliser (by Rhod Mitchell, West Briton)

Stourbridge 2 Truro City 2

City conceded a soft late equaliser to miss out on their first Calor League premier division win of 2014 on Tuesday evening.

Ben Watson’s goal nine minutes from time, to give City the lead for the second time, looked enough to clinch the points after a long trip to the West Midlands..

But a misjudgment by Arran Pugh, who had been struggling with a gashed leg, allowed Kayleden Brown to score his second goal of the night to deny the visitors victory.

It was City’s fifth draw in their last eight games, only one of which they have lost, and again showed the team’s improvement in recent months.

City had not been in action since drawing 1-1 at home to Stourbridge on January 11 and not surprisingly they looked a little rusty early on and had to ride their luck in the first half, as the home side twice hit the bar through Billingham and Richards.

But City defended well and took the lead after 27 minutes with a great strike by man of the match Olly Brokenshire, who was playing in a new role just behind Watson, with Jamie Lowry not travelling because of a family illness.

And it was a lead they held until the 53rd minute when Brown got a slight head on to Ben Billingham’s free kick to beat Grant Fisher.

City continued to play well and after Watson’s goal looked odds on to win.

Both Watson and Brokenshire had the chance to make the game safe immediately before Stourbridge salvaged that last gasp equaliser.

And it all left City boss Steve Massey happy with his team’s performance but frustrated that against they had been unable to get the win.

He said: “The performance was very good but it is frustrating to come so close again and not win, but it just shows how far we have come as a team.”

City have another long trip this Saturday when they travel to play Redditch Utd (3pm).

City (4-4-1-1): Fisher; Tully, Pugh, Kendall, Daw (White 60); Cooke, Broad, Green, Afful; Brokenshire; Watson. Subs (not used): Sims, Copp, Eddy, Gildin (gk).

Goals: Brokenshire (27) 0-1, Brown (53) 1-1, Watson (81) 1-2; Brown (89) 2-2.

Crowd: 260

28 January 2014

Stourbridge pre match notes (from official Stourbridge site)

Truro City visit Amblecote on Tuesday night (28th Jan) for a Calor League fixture. Please don't forget that kick off is at the slightly earlier time of 7.30pm.

The two teams met at Treyew Road only 17 days ago, with the points eventually shared after Ryan Rowe's second half equaliser cancelled out Ben Watson's effort for the home side.

Thanks to the British weather, Truro have not actually played since that game, and currently occupy 17th spot in the League table with 29 points from 26 games played. However, with only three teams due to be relegated they appear to be well clear of trouble at this stage of the season.

This will be the first meeting at Amblecote since the 2010/11 season, when the Glassboys battled back from a two-goal deficit to earn a 2-2 draw against the eventual Premier Division Champions. The previous season, Truro's first at this level, had seen Stourbridge run up a 7-2 victory.

The full Calor League Premier Division fixture list this midweek...

Tuesday 28 January

Bashley v Weymouth
Burnham v St Albans City
Chippenham Town v St Neots Town
Hungerford Town v Corby Town
Poole Town v Hitchin Town
Stourbridge v Truro City

Wednesday 29 January

Frome Town v Bideford               

25 January 2014

Cornwall Council's Bob Egerton investigates potential Stadium developer

Check out this link on the BBC website by journalist Graham Smith.  It makes for very interesting reading:


Hungerford game OFF

Just to confirm that the Hungerford game today is OFF due to waterlogged pitch.

22 January 2014

City Alerts: Rearranged matches update

Truro City Football Club First Team

Our match away to Stourbridge is on Tuesday 28th January.
Please note that the kick off time has changed to 7:30pm.
On Tuesday 18th February we host Weymouth:
This match was due to be played on New Year's Day.  This will be a 7:45pm kick off. Bar and turnstiles will be open from 5pm.
The match away to Burnham has now been rearranged for Tuesday 25th February.
This will be a 7:45pm kick off. Bar and turnstiles will be open from 5pm.
The weather has caused so many matches across the country to be cancelled so hopefully this will be the last of the rearrangements. All the preparations are in place to get this weekend’s match versus Hungerford Town played. Let's hope the rain stays away.

Stadium for Cornwall plans "alive and kicking" - supermarket could fund project (WB Miles - West Briton 21st Jan)

Plans for a stadium for Cornwall are "alive and kicking" and could be financed by revenue from a supermarket on adjoining land, it has been announced.

New proposals for a retail site next to the stadium at Threemilestone have been released which developers claim “inject commercial reality into the process”.

Plans for the stadium appeared to have gone cold as no financial backer was forthcoming and Cornwall Council voted against investing public money into the project.

Inox Group has already got planning permission for the stadium and 1,500 homes on land at Langarth near Truro’s park-and-ride.
The company said it had now secured an option on an additional 35 acres of land adjoining Langarth Farm and had instructed commercial property agents to market the site to potential end users, including supermarket operators.

Subject to planning, the company said it aimed to create a commercial scheme that could bankroll not just the construction of the multi million pound stadium but provide long term revenue streams to help meet running costs.

This could include a supermarket, petrol station, cycle track, sports pitches, leisure facilities and some housing, with net proceeds being ploughed into the stadium project.

Inox Managing Director Rob Saltmarsh said: “In 2010 Inox committed to assisting with the delivery of the Stadium for Cornwall by securing planning permission and providing the land for the stadium – this we have now done. Given the continued pressure on the public purse we have now further committed to try and source private funding for what we believe is an incredible project that would be a major asset for the whole of Cornwall.”

Mr Saltmarsh said his company would now seek to gain planning permission for the new proposals which would help to fund the stadium.

He said: “Other areas of funding have been exhausted over the past few years and although I am sure there will be both critics and supporters of this approach, the blunt reality is that without public funding we have no other option but to pursue commercial funding avenues that we are advised have the potential to generate the millions required to make this project happen.

“If the stadium is ever going to happen, then some commercial reality needs to be injected into this process.”

Mr Saltmarsh said the funding options would be a lot clearer in the coming weeks and if positive Inox would look to hold discussions with Cornwall Council and potential stadium tenants the Cornish Pirates RFC, Truro City FC and Truro and Penwith College, with the aim of submitting an enabling development planning application in the spring of 2014.

Peter Marks, chairman of the Stadium 4 Cornwall (S4C) group, said he welcomed the Inox initiative. He said: “The previous full Council voted against the use of public monies to help fund the community stadium and it was made clear that the private sector needed to find a solution.

“This latest news shows the stadium project is alive and kicking and a potential private funding solution is possible, but for the enabling development to happen, the support of Cornwall Council will be required.

“It remains the view of S4C and thousands of people in Cornwall that a community stadium must be a top priority for Cornwall.”

Dicky Evans, Cornish Pirates chairman, said: “Despite the delays and hurdles in the way over the last few years, the Cornish Pirates are pleased to confirm that they remain fully committed to supporting the proposed Stadium for Cornwall at Langarth, Truro.

“Without such a facility the Pirates are unable to move forward in their quest to improve sporting standards in Cornwall and especially on the rugby field.

“It is galling to see local players continue to move out of Cornwall to improve their prospects of top class rugby and this talent drain can only be halted by the provision of such a facility.”

Last week Truro City Football Club indicated its ongoing desire to move to a stadium site to make way for the development of Treyew Road.

18 January 2014

Truro City plan for stadium move (BBC Sport - updated 17th Jan)

The prospect of Truro City leaving Treyew Road has come a step closer as developers continue with plans to build a large supermarket on the site.
Development company Helical Bar are working up proposals and are in talks with Cornwall Council, with a planning application expected in the spring.

Truro City owner Peter Masters said the news was a positive step for his club.

"There's a chance for Truro and Cornwall as a whole to capitalise on this," Masters told BBC Radio Cornwall.
"It's exciting times ahead. We've been talking to Helical Bar and we're all hopefully going forward with a development on Treyew Road which will then allow some of the monies to be diverted for a new stadium for Truro City.

"I do believe that Truro needs to do something to take things forward. The high street and the whole place is tired - we need some new development to take it on and importantly I have to look after the football club.

"I like to think they'd be making a contribution around the £4m mark."

The communication between Helical Bar and the council (external) - which is currently a request for a screening opinion (external) rather than a formal planning application - details the intention to demolish the existing stadium and construct a 4,600+ square metre supermarket, plus more than 300 car-parking spaces and a petrol station.

A spokesperson for the Morrisons supermarket chain told the BBC that they were potentially interested in the site.

"At this stage we are yet to make a decision but look forward to sharing our plans with the community, when things progress," the spokesperson added.

Masters said the club, which has suffered from serious financial difficulties in the recent past, planned to continue playing at Treyew Road for the rest of this season and the next, but there was an alternative offer on the table for a groundsharing arrangement with another club.

"Helical Bar have offered to finance some of that relocation cost," added Masters, who owns the football club but not the stadium.

"But there is a finite amount in the pot so whatever we spend on the temporary relocation will come out of the main pot so we all have to be very cost-conscious. I want to end up with a stadium for that we can all be proud of.

"Nothing is set in stone and it will be a fight - at the end of the day it's all about money. I think there's an element of trust and understanding which we can take further and we've all got to make sure we come up with the goods."

The news could have implications for the idea of a Stadium for Cornwall, which could be shared with the Cornish Pirates rugby side.

The proposal has been on hold since 2012, when councillors voted against providing £10m (external) towards the project.

Under the leadership of former owner and chairman Kevin Heaney, Truro were promoted five times in six years. They also won the 2007 FA Vase. But Mr Heaney went bankrupt in 2012.

Local businessmen Peter Masters and Philip Perryman took over the club in December 2012 and in June 2013 agreed a deal with all the club's creditors.

A Company Voluntary Agreement (CVA) was arranged which took debts of up to £4.5m down to about £80,000.

Today's matches (Sat 18th Jan)

Just to confirm that both the first team game away to Biggleswade and the second team game home to Helston are off due to waterlogged Pitches. It was a 50/50 call this morning at Treyew Road as to whether or not the game would be played but with the forecast of further rain there was no other option. Naturally we are all very disappointed.  

The rearranged dates for the postponed fixtures will be released as soon as confirmation is received.

Peter Masters

15 January 2014

Re arranged Weymouth game

The home game against Weymouth that was postponed on New Year's Day has now been  re-arranged as follows:

Truro City v Weymouth Town  on Tuesday 18 February KO 7.45pm.

12 January 2014

Anyone fancy Argyle v Port Vale Tuesday?

Anyone interested in going to the Plymouth Argyle v Port Vale FA Cup replay on Tuesday? KO 7.45pm

We have the opportunity to use the Truro City FC Executive Coach. The cost for the coach will be £15 each,of course your admission will be in addition to that and will be left to you to arrange. But I've just been on the Argyle website, and buying tickets doesn't look to be a problem.

I need to know who would be interested as soon as possible.

Please text or phone me on 07759 502408 if you would like to go. It's limited to 30 people and with places on the coach already going, to avoid disappointment don't hang around in contacting me.

The coach will leave from Truro's football ground. Time to be confirmed.

Dave Deacon


City left to rue missed chances as they draw again (by Rhod Mitchell, West Briton)

Truro City 1 Stourbridge 1

City boss Steve Massey admitted his side’s fourth draw in their last five Calor League premier division games felt more like a defeat.

It was a game City should really have won against the promotion-chasing visitors who played with ten men for more than half the game after Luke Benbow saw red just before the interval for a bad challenge on Dan Green.

By that stage, City had gone 1-0 up, with Ben Watson scoring his fifth of the season after 35 minutes, with a fine finish into the far corner, after being played in by skipper Joe Broad down the right.
The dismissal of Benbow four minutes later gave City another big lift, but they could not take full advantage, with Watson missing two great opportunities at the start of the second period.

First he shot wide after being played through by Jamie Lowry and then delayed his shot too long after Les Afful had put him clear, allowing a defender to get in a desperate covering tackle.

Stourbridge, to their credit, lifted their game after the let-offs and substitute Ryan Rowe levelled after 64 minutes with a similar finish to Watson’s goal, as City appealed in vain for offside.

And it then took a quality save by City keeper Grant Fisher to keep out Ben Billingham’s shot, after he was played through by Rowe, to ensure an ever improving City stretched their unbeaten league run to five matches.

“It felt like a defeat in the dressing room,” admitted Massey after the game.

“But it is probably a measure of how far we have come as a team to be disappointed with a point against a team who I am sure will be in the play-offs.”

CITY: Fisher; Tully, White, Pugh, Daw; Afful, Brokenshire (Cooke 88), Broad (capt), Green (Eddy 72), Lowry, Watson. Subs (not used): Evans Copp.
Goals: Watson (35) 1-0, Rowe (64) 1-1.
Red card: Benbow ( Stourbridge, 39).
Referee: Andrew Turner (Exeter).

Crowd: 401.

09 January 2014

Truro City eye window in weather as they strive to play again (Western Morning News)

Weather permitting, Truro City return to Southern League Premier Division action after more than two weeks without a game when they take on Stourbridge at Treyew Road on Saturday.

The Glassmen moved into the play-off places when they came from behind to beat struggling Bedford Town 2-1 on Tuesday, in a game watched by City boss Steve Massey.

Stourbridge are the league’s second top scorers with 61 goals, led by Sean Geddes with 17 and Ryan Rowe with 12.

Massey says the visitors will pose a good test for City’s much improved defence, who have kept three clean sheets in their last four games.

He said: “Stourbridge are like many teams in this league, very good going forward.

“They have a lot of pace and like to get balls into the box and it will be a good test to see how far we have come defensively.”

Massey desperately wants the bad weather to relent to allow the game to go ahead after the seemingly non-stop rain forced the postponements of the holiday games against Weymouth (home) and Burnham(away).

He hopes to be able to choose from a full strength squad for the game and has also been boosted by the fact that skipper Jake Ash, who has not played since the start of September because of a pelvic injury, is back running.

07 January 2014

Torquay United appoint Chris Hargreaves as new manager and Lee Hodges as Assistant Manager

Source: BBC Sport

Torquay United have appointed former captain Chris Hargreaves as their new manager following Alan Knill's sacking.

The 41-year-old will take his first managerial job at the struggling Gulls, having left his role as first-team coach at Bournemouth.

Hargreaves made more than 100 appearances for Torquay as a player, helping them back into the Football League in 2009.

Torquay are 23rd in League Two, with just five league wins all season.

Hargreaves is a popular figure at Plainmoor, having scored the Gulls' first goal in the 2-0 Conference Premier play-off final win over Cambridge in 2009 that took Torquay back to the Football League after a two-year absence.

The former Oxford, Hereford and Plymouth Argyle midfielder had also been strongly linked with the managerial vacancy at Northampton Town, the only club below Torquay in the League Two table.

Hargreaves, who also had a spell as part of the coaching staff at Exeter City, has appointed former Torquay team-mate Lee Hodges as his assistant. Hodges was boss at non-league side Truro City, until the club's fall from grace after financial problems.

''Chris has started work already and we are thrilled to have a new manager in place for the challenges ahead over the second half of the season,'' said Torquay chairwoman Thea Bristow.

''We have been inundated with applications from across the football world but once the decision was made for a change of direction, Chris was always our first choice.

''He was very impressive in the interview and I am delighted to have both Chris and Lee Hodges back at Plainmoor.

''We now have a vibrant and ambitious management team to take us forward to the next stage in our development as a club, and we are all excited for the future.''

 Knill was sacked on 2 January having overseen a record of nine wins, 12 draws and 20 defeats in all competitions since initially taking the job on an interim basis in February 2013.

Hargreaves' first game in charge of Torquay will be Saturday's trip to mid-table AFC Wimbledon.

Torquay vice-chairman Bill Phillips said that Hargreaves would be unlikely to have a large transfer budget to play with in the current transfer window.

"We've had to terminate two managers' contracts in the last 12 months and money is tight," he told BBC Radio Devon.

"But we just thought that it was the right time and the right people to bring on board."

Head of youth Geoff Harrop took control of the first team for Saturday's 1-1 draw with Morecambe, and - talking before Hargreaves' appointment - he said the club's new manager would have the full backing of the staff at Plainmoor.

"From the top to the bottom, it's a wonderful football club and we have to make sure whoever comes in as manager is ready to take us forward, and he will know that everyone at the club will back him," said Harrop.

The club have called a news conference for 14:00 GMT on Tuesday to formally unveil Hargreaves and Hodges.

06 January 2014

TISA Members Meeting – Railway Club - Saturday Jan 25th

TISA Members Meeting – Railway Club - Saturday Jan 25th @ 12:30 (Before Hungerford Game)

This is early notification of our next full members meeting.  Please submit agenda Items to me.  We will also be handing over our £300 pound cheque to Bipolar UK before Kick Off at Treyew Road (Once I’ve cleared this with Mr Masters of course).  There are no premiership games on this day to worry about and for many of us, sadly no cup games either but the least we say about that the better!

Simon Birch – TISA Secretary