Southport Loss Sees Gulls Without a Win in Six
Torquay United’s poor run of form continued, as Kevin Nicholson’s men fell to a 2-1 defeat against Southport at Plainmoor on Saturday afternoon writes SSD’s Matt Green.
Kevin Nicholson had Ben Gerring back in the starting eleven after his recent suspension while Joe Ward replaced Sam Chaney in the United midfield.
Ryan Higgins’ seventh minute wide effort was the first attempt on goal by either side. Jamie Reid then missed with a speculative shot after a long clearance from inside his own area by Luke Young, just past the ten minute mark. Southport had the a great chance to open the scoring, on 19 minutes, when a fine diagonal cross by Ryan Higgins found the head of Andrai Jones but the forward was just wide with his shot. A minute later, Giancarlo Gallifuoco tried to produce a similar cross but the United full-back floated his ball too high for Nathan Blissett. With the visitors creating more in the opening 25 minutes, Nathan Ferguson found Liam Hynes wide on the right but his low cross was narrowly missed by Jones outstretched leg. A minute later and against the run of play, Torquay found themselves a goal up, when Brett Williams curled a delightful effort into the bottom left-hand corner from 25 yards following an assist from Luke Young. That was Williams’ second of the season for Torquay. Jamie Allen then forced Brendan Moore into a save from the edge of the area on 38 minutes, before United went straight down the other end, Williams seeing his header saved easily by Magnus Norman in the Southport goal. With a minute to go before the break, the returning Gerring almost gave the home side a two goal lead but his header from a Young corner was just too high.
The opening quarter of the second half produced little in the way of real chances for either side; Declan Weeks tried from distance, twice, for Southport, while Courtney Richards also struck from distance for the home side. Nicholson decided to bring on Chaney in the 63rd minute for Ward but it was Southport who produced the equaliser, on 67 minutes, when skipper Callum Howe was allowed to control the ball on the edge of the 18-yard box and lob the ball over Moore and into the back of the net from a central position. Torquay then found themselves behind when substitute James Caton cut inside Gallifuoco in the 75th minute and shot right-footed and low, beating Moore at his near post. It was a lead that the visitors deserved on the balance of play in the second half. The Gulls did have the ball in the back of the net through Sean McGinty, in the 82nd minute, but the assistant referee flagged for offside and the relief around the ground was short-lived. Ashley Grimes should have got Southport’s third in the 90th minute but the substitute fired straight at Moore. The visitors could have regreted that miss when first Reid had a strike from eight yards tipped over by Norman and then a McGinty cross eluded everyone before going out for a goal-kick deep in stoppage time.
At the final whistle the home crowed showed their frustration with a chorus of boos around the ground as United are now without a win in their last six games in all competitions. The Gulls’ next league action is away at Guiseley on the 12th November, before returning to Plainmoor on Saturday 19th November against Wrexham.
TUFC: Moore, Gallifuoco, Gerring, McGinty, Rowe-Turner, Ward (Chaney 63), Richards (capt), Young, Williams, Blissett (Chamberlain 82), Reid.
Subs Not Used: Robba, Duke, Palfrey.
TUFC Bookings: Reid (78).
Southport: Norman, Higgins, Thompson, Howe, Ashton, Ferguson (Caton 46), Weeks, Nolan, Hynes, Allen (Grimes 68), Jones.
Subs Not Used: Gray, Cofie, Jones.
Attendance: 1,490 (52 away).
Referee: Mr S Barrow
MOTM: Brett Williams (TUFC).