Gulls start new year at Yeovil

Josh Umerah of Torquay United wins the aerial challenge against Max Hunt of Yeovil Town during the

Josh Umerah of Torquay United wins the aerial challenge against Max Hunt of Yeovil Town during the National League match between Torquay United and Yeovil Town at Plainmoor Torquay, Devon on Saturday 26th December 2020 - PHOTO: Dave Crawford/PPAUK - Credit: Dave Crawford/PPAUK

The revenge ‘boot’ is on the other foot between Torquay United and Yeovil Town, says Gulls manager Gary Johnson ahead of Saturday’s National League return derby against the Glovers behind closed doors at Huish Park (3pm).  

Twelve months after a 6-2 defeat in Somerset, United routed Yeovil 6-1 at Plainmoor on Boxing Day and, after a last-gasp 4-3 victory at Weymouth on Monday, which stretched their lead at the top of the table to eleven points, United take on Town for a second time in eight days.  

“If there’s one thing we should all know by now in this league, it’s that you can’t judge results before any game,” said ex-Yeovil boss Johnson.  

“The only bearing that Boxing Day has on this game is that the ‘vengeance’ factor is now on their side.”  

With leading scorer Danny Wright and midfielder Armani Little currently struck down with hamstring injuries, and striker Billy Waters missing the last two games with an ankle problem, Johnson has hinted at a possible New Year dip into the transfer market.   

He’s been giving nothing away on that front over the last few days, beyond stressing: “We have worked hard to put together and develop a good understanding in our group, and what you don’t want to do is change the dynamics of the dressing room if we can help it.   

“We are always looking to see how we might improve things in all areas, so we’re ready when we do make a move.”  

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Josh Umerah took Wright’s place at centre-forward and scored his third goal of the season at Weymouth, and Johnson says: “Josh was quietly efficient there.   

“He is still learning, but he’s strong, he’s good at finding space in the penalty area and he gives it all he’s got.   

“He put his goal away really well, and that should have helped his confidence.”  

Johnson points out that Yeovil bounced back quickly from their mauling at Plainmoor to beat  Aldershot 3-0 on Monday.   

They had key defender Luke Wilkinson back from suspension then, but one in coincided with one out, because former Gulls loan striker Joe Quigley was sent off and misses Saturday’s match.