Summer signing Dan has 'point to prove'

Torbay Weekly

Summer signing Dan Martin is on a 'payback' mission at Torquay United after the start of his Plainmoor career was marred by a red card in a costly FA Cup defeat.

The Gulls lost 4-2 in a replay at NL South side Havant & Waterlooville (Oct 21) after former Fulham and Cardiff City starlet Martin's dismissal, missing out on nearly £10,000 prizemoney and a First Round tie at Charlton Athletic.

But now Martin, an attacking left-back or left winger, is back in the side and he had his best game so far in United's morale-boosting 2-1 win at Weymouth last weekend.

"The cup-tie was one of those games where we didn't really turn up. We needed a big tackle from someone, without getting sent off, and I'm afraid I took the job too seriously," said Maidstone-born Martin.

"It was a rush of blood. I let the team down, and now I've got a point to prove.

"Because we had a blank weekend in the middle of it, my (three-match) suspension lasted just over a month, and it was a long month.

"It was a jolt for me mentally. I had to work my way back into the team as quick as possible, and now I'm doing everything I can to stay in.

"We've not had the best season so far in terms of winning games, with a lot of new signings and a few lads who haven't played in this league before," said Martin, who had a loan spell at Weston-super-mare during his three years at Cardiff.

"But Weymouth was probably our best 90-minute performance so far.  If we can get a couple more wins, the Play-Offs are not out of our heads, because there's enough ability in the squad."

United took more than 400 supporters to Weymouth, where goals by Joe Lewis and sub Sinclair Armstrong earned the points, and Johnson said: "These people come and watch us home and away, and I wanted to do it for them.  They were fantastic."

United also hit the woodwork three times and a major test awaits the Gulls this Saturday (3pm) - ambitious Stockport County (9th) are the visitors.