Gary Johnson 'surprised' by Woking comments

Gary Johnson, Manager of Torquay United and Aaron Downes, Assistant Manager of Torquay United during

Gary Johnson, Manager of Torquay United and Aaron Downes, Assistant Manager of Torquay United during the Vanarama National League match between Woking and Torquay United at the Laithwaite Community Stadium, Woking, Surrey on Tuesday 20th April 2021 | Photo: James Fearn/PPAUK - Credit: James Fearn/PPAUK

The remark by Woking manager Alan Dowson that the Cards wanted to 'do Sutton a favour' against Torquay United this week has not gone down well with Gulls’ boss Gary Johnson. 

United won 2-0 at Kingfield on Tuesday night to move level on points with the Cards' fellow Surrey rivals Sutton in an ever-tightening National League promotion race, a point behind leaders Hartlepool United. 

Both Woking and Torquay were hit by injuries, with Dowson also revealing that he had to withdraw defender Moussa Diarra in the first half because he was apparently suffering from the effects of dietary limitations around the festival of Ramadan. 

But Johnson said he was 'surprised' by Dowson's statement that "We wanted to do Sutton a favour tonight, but fair play to Torquay." 

"Yes, I find it a little bit surprising," said Johnson. 

"Sutton play Woking in a couple of week's time, so I don't think that was right. 

"Surely, you're doing your best for Woking, not trying to do Sutton a favour." 

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Dowson also commented that the lack of relegation in the National League has taken the pressure off Woking in terms of team selection. 

Dowson said in his post-match interview: "If there was relegation, we would be signing players left, right and centre to get out of the mess. 

"But there is no relegation. The pressure is off them (his team), so we're trying to play young lads and see the season through." 

Johnson has previously highlighted the potential of no-relegation to threaten some teams' competitiveness over the closing weeks of the season. 

Wealdstone have lost their last two games 2-7 and 0-6, although the Stones do not have to play any of the title-chasing trio of Hartlepool, Sutton or Torquay again.