Gulls must kickstart their season

Torquay United manager Gary Johnson on the touchline during the Vanarama National League Match betw

Torquay United manager Gary Johnson on the touchline during the Vanarama National League Match between Solihull Moors and Torquay United at Damson Parkway, Solihull on September 14 - PHOTO: Steve Bond/PPAUK - Credit: Steve Bond/Pinnacle

A no-punches-pulled verdict from manager Gary Johnson, after Torquay United's 2-1 defeat at Solihull Moors this week, is designed to spark the sort of reaction which can kickstart the Gulls' season. 

Johnson described his team as 'not good enough' and hinted at changes in personnel after United's fourth defeat in the first six games of the season. 

"I'm hoping that I've lit the touch-paper for some of them," said Johnson ahead of Saturday's home game against Southend United. 

"It's a new group, some of them haven't found their 100% yet and, at the moment the team isn't quite gelling. 

"It has in certain parts in certain games, but then it hasn't. This league is unrelenting - some of them have got to learn that very quickly. 

"After four defeats in six games, we've got to let people know 'Your place is not safe now'. 

"I don't plan these things, and I don't do it as a white flag for me, but they've got to see it as a red flag. 

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"I will talk to the boys again, so they all know why I said what I said after Tuesday. 

"Sometimes that gets them back. Sometimes you lose them. 

"Little things that happened on Tuesday went quite well - we passed the ball a bit better, but without a real end product, we were still in the game at 2-1 and we had a 100% penalty to have nicked a draw. 

"But Solihull were the team that looked more dangerous, which always disappoints me." 

Johnson, who gave a debut to former Cheltenham Town winger Alex Addai at Solihull, stressed that he, assistant Aaron Downes and head of recruitment Peter Johnson have stepped up their efforts to strengthen the squad.