Gary Johnson calls for determination as Gulls take on Eastleigh

Torquay manager Gary Johnson. Photo: Micah Crook/PPAUK

Torquay manager Gary Johnson. Photo: Micah Crook/PPAUK - Credit: Micah Crook/PPAUK

Manager Gary Johnson has called on his Torquay United side, still without several senior pros, to show the same determination which helped them beat Stockport County at the weekend when they face Eastleigh away in the second game of the National League season tonight (7.45pm).

The Gulls beat Stockport 1-0 with a stoppage-time winner from midfielder Connor Lemonheigh-Evans after keeping County at bay for much of the second half.

“The spirit of our defending was terrific on Saturday, we showed a bit of resilience and, importantly, we finished the fitter team,” said Johnson.

“We did a psychological job against Stockport - normally, it’s the crowd that keeps you in the game in those circumstances.

“But we kept a team that was ‘hot’ out, without any help from our fans, and that was something that we stressed to the players afterwards.”

Eastleigh went to Barnet and opened their season with a 5-1 victory, and Johnson added: “They are very much like Stockport, with some very experienced players, especially at the back.

“If we give the ball away as much as we did on Saturday, we will be punished. But we know we’ve got the passing side in our game, and we need to show it more.”

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United, who are unlikely to have any of their seven missing players back against Eastleigh, did not sustain any new injuries at the weekend.

Johnson introduced a trio of new loan signings - centre-back Sam Sherring (AFC Bournemouth), who started, and midfielder Adam Randell (Plymouth Argyle) and striker Louis Britton (Bristol City) who both came on in the closing stages.

He is unlikely to alter the defence, which performed well and where he has few options anyway, but he has scope for changes in midfield and attack if he wants to make them.