United show they can compete with the best

Torbay Weekly

Gary Johnson said that Torquay United's 2-1 win over Stockport County, one of the promotion favourites, showed that his Gulls can compete with the best teams in the National League.

United won with a 19th minute own-goal, forced by young loan striker Sinclair Armstrong, and skipper Asa Hall's penalty on the stroke of half-time.

Those goals were split by a Will Collar equaliser - he also 'scored' the OG - for County, managed by Dave Challinor, whose Hartlepool United side beat the Gulls in last season's Play-Off Final.

Torquay had to withstand fierce and prolonged pressure by the big-spending Hatters in the second half, but Johnson said: "I am just pleased that the three points are ours.

"And we showed that we can play and compete well against a team that expects to be at the top of the table.

"They are one of the favourites to win the league, and you can see why.

"I am pleased that we followed up the Weymouth result (2-1) last week with this one.

"You need three or four games to call it a real run, and now the key is to keep it going through the Christmas period.

"We thought long and hard about how we were going to stop them, and when you win like that, it means you've got your tactics right.

"We gave the ball away a bit too much in the last 20 minutes, but we put in a real work ethic.

"Young Sinclair Armstrong has never run as far or as fast or as often as he did today. He had run his course, but we were able to send Danny Wright and Connor (Lemonheigh-Evans) on at the end to help us."

Johnson added: "I thought the atmosphere was great today, and it really helped.

"I've always said that our crowd are football people, and they know when our lads need an atmosphere to keep them going.

"Thanks to them as well, because they helped us to get over the line."