Halfway target for Torquay United

Gary Johnson, Manager of Torquay United before the National League match between Torquay United and

Gary Johnson, Manager of Torquay United before the National League match between Torquay United and Grimsby Town at Plainmoor Torquay, Devon on Saturday 11th September 2021 - PHOTO: Dave Crawford/PPAUK - Credit: Dave Crawford/PPAUK

A place in the top half of the National League table by the halfway stage of the season is a priority for Torquay United manager Gary Johnson if the Gulls are to challenge for promotion again. 

A 2-0 defeat at Boreham Wood (2nd) on Tuesday night prompted renewed calls for greater consistency from Johnson, and it leaves United in 13th place, 12 points behind early leaders Grimsby Town. 

"We've got a group that's able to reach their potential sometimes, but sometimes below it," said Johnson. 

"You ask every team in this division and they would all say the same, barring a couple of top teams. 

"We've just got to keep going, and try and add more quality when we can. 

"But we need to get in the top half of that table, certainly before Christmas, so you've got a chance of getting in the top six or seven." 

Johnson has been close to adding his first loan signing of the season recently, although he stresses how careful he and his backroom team are being to nail down the right addition at the moment. 

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Torquay face another tough away game this Saturday, at sixth-placed Bromley, and Johnson is hoping that the noisy support in midweek is repeated at Hayes Lane, even though the game is now being televised live by BT Sport, still with a 3pm kick-off. 

Nearly 250 Gulls fans swelled Tuesday's gate at to 701, above par by Meadow Park standards, and Johnson said: "The highlight for me at Boreham Wood was our fans, and I hope they don't ignore us on Saturday because we lost. 

"Our supporters were magnificent. I enjoyed their sing-song before the game, and they came out with a lot of new songs and clever songs - they played their part. 

"We didn't get a result for them, but we will. We really do appreciate that support."