Keating Double Gives United Victory
Torquay United 2
Keating 42, 53
East Thurrock United 0
Torquay United continued their unbeaten start to the season with a 2 – 0 victory against East Thurrock United at Plainmoor on Saturday afternoon, thanks to goals either side of half time from Ruairi Keating.
“I’m very happy with the result, obviously thats three games where we haven’t conceded and I think it’s an excellent weeks work from the players so a pad on the back for them but it’s the first week and we have many more difficult weeks ahead of us” head coach Gary Owers said following the full time whistle.
Owers started with the same eleven players that finished Tuesday night’s victory against Bath City, meaning Chris Regis and Jamie Reid dropped to the bench with Samir Nabi and Keating starting.
And Owers decision was vindicated with Keating’s two goals. “That should give him confidence, he’s been patient and told us that he can score goals and on the evidence of today he is right, I’m pleased for him and I hope that gives him a boost and he goes on to get many more this season”.
United showed their intention straight from the first whistle when Ryan Dickson tried his luck from the half way line kick off before a mistake on 2-minutes by Lee Burns let Brett Williams in but the United captain scuffed his shot before Ryan Scott hooked the ball away to safety.
Just after the half hour Keating tried to beat the keeper from 35 yards when a simple pass out to the right for Ben Wynter might have been the better option.
Both sides had half chances in the final 10 minutes of the half, first Danilo Oris-Dadomo cut inside and shot from the edge of the area before Paul Konchesky found Alfie Egan who tested Shaun MacDonald in the Torquay goal from 20 yards.
The home side then went on the attack with Liam Davis crossing from the left, however Keating’s header was just wide of the target, then Nabi was found by Dickson in the middle of the area but the midfielder couldn’t get his shot away before being closed down by a number of the visitors defenders.
With an underwhelming first half coming to an end Owers men final got the breakthrough when a Dickson’s Long ball had Lee Burns and keeper Jack Giddens getting in each other’s way on the edge of the area which allowed Keating to pick up the pieces and side foot the ball into the empty net.
Neither manager made any changes at half time and again, as in the first half, Torquay started well with Wynter putting in a fine cross from the right that just eluded Williams before Dickson found Williams again inside the box but this time the United man saw his shot deflected wide.
The visitors then had a great chance to level things on 49-minutes when Simmons crossed from the left and Orsi-Dadomo saw his shot from 10 yards saved well by MacDonald onto the bar.
And how the visitors would rue that opportunity to equalise as 4-minutes later a Davis cross found Keating unmarked in the middle of the six-yard box and the forward directed his header past Giddens to double the Gulls lead.
Midfielder Chris Regis then came on for the injured centre back Jakub Sokolik in the 69th minute, meaning Asa Hall moved into the back three for the final 20 minutes, before Owers withdraw match winner Keating for Jamie Reid in the 76th minute.
With the clock running down neither side produced any real opportunity in the final quarter of the game however East Thurrock’s substitute Ashley Miller tried to get a consultation goal for the visitors in injury time but MacDonald was equal to the effort and ensured United finished with a clean sheet.
United have taken 7 points from a possible 9 in the opening weeks of the season and attention now turns to Tuesday night when they travel to Oxford City before another away day on Saturday against Slough Town.
TUFC Starting XI (3-5-2): MacDonald, Sokolik (Regis 69), Niate, Cameron, Wynter, Davis, Hall, Dickson, Nabi, Keating (Reid 76), Williams (Capt) (Banton 88)
Subs Not Used: Burton, Bawling
MOTM: Ruairi Keating