A Round-up of Argyle News
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John Sheridan is very pleased with the performance in spite of Argyle's 1-1 draw at home to York City. Sheridan said that Argyle did almost everything right and he would feel the same way even if the greens had lost the match: “I am obviously disappointed not to take the three points, but I am very, very pleased with the way we played. We did everything right, other than the last second. They get a free-kick – which I think should have been our free kick; I am a long way away, but I think the referee has changed his mind – it is near enough the last kick of the game, and the ball is coming in your box, so there is always going to be a danger, and unfortunately it ends up in the back of the net. I cannot fault the players – I just said that to them after the game. They are all down, but I am chuffed with the way we went about how to win the game. It is just a shame we did not get the three points. I felt no danger whatsoever during the game. Even if we had lost the game and we played the way we did, I would still be talking the way I am. I think it is about standards – we are getting a bit of consistency. Even last week at Mansfield, we lost the game but I felt we should have got something out of the game. We kept the ball; we switched the play; we did everything that I wanted us to do. We slowed it down; we kept it when we had to; and we created chances, but it is 1-1. It is just a shame that we did not get the goal, because when it is 1-0, everyone knows there is always a chance that you could get something out of the game, and unfortunately it has happened to us. I have been on the other end – I remember Mansfield last season – so I will take it on the chin but, in terms of our performance, if we keep playing at that level, especially playing at home, a lot of teams are going to be frightened of us.
“We have got a point, and now you have got to work hard to win your away game – our next league game against Northampton. Obviously next week, with the FA Cup, is a change, and it is a big game for us; a game we want to win. We have just got to keep those standards. The league is very tight. We have got believe, and I am very pleased with the way we are playing, especially at home.”
Sheridan also mentioned the injuries of Carl McHugh and Marvin Morgan who were both absent from the matchday squad against York: “Carl has got a bit of a tight calf. He has had it for two or three weeks. Carl would probably have played today if it was up to him, but I think it’s just a case of resting him and getting him treated. He didn’t ask to come off last week but he was struggling a little bit with it. He’s a lot better with a week’s rest and hopefully he will be back soon.
“Marvin had a scan and he’s probably going to be out for two weeks. He has been training with it but he has been complaining about it, so Paul Atkinson took him for the scan. They have advised him to rest for two weeks.”
Argyle's run of consecutive home wins has come to an end with a 1-1 draw against York City in which the visitors equalised following a 93rd minute goalline scramble. Argyle went into the lead via Bobby Reid's first goal for the club following his midweek return to Argyle in just the third minute. The game looked like petering out into a home win but York caught Argyle with a late sucker punch. Argyle: McCormick, Nelson, O'Connor, Hartley, Mellor, Cox, Bobby Reid, Blizzard, Kellett, Reuben Reid(Smalley), Alessandra. Subs: Bittner, Purrington, Harvey, Thomas, Banton, Norburn.
John Sheridan has stated his happiness and grattitude at having Bobby Reid back on loan until January 3rd. He also confirmed that the deal has no recall clause and that he does not know what will happen with Bobby after the loan expires in early January. Finally, he will not be able to play in FA Cup matches. Sheridan: “I am very pleased. Obviously he did really well the first time he was here,” said John. I understand the reasons he went back. Steve Cotterill got one or two injuries and needed to call him back – and that is the gamble you take sometimes when you take a player on loan. There is always a chance that there is a recall, and Steve made that very clear when I first took him. I am very pleased to get him back, and hopefully he can carry on what he was doing before he left. He has that bit of cleverness and cockiness on the ball; he can get away from people over a 15 or 20 yard period, and he disturbs people. He has got that little bit of cuteness and confidence on the ball, which is a little bit different to what we have got.
“You will see that little pass in and around the penalty area, and that is what he will bring to us, which is what we need. I took a chance and rang Steve to ask if we could have him, obviously knowing that they were probably trying to get one or two players. Full credit to Steve, he said we could have him. It is for a month and he cannot play in the FA Cup, so really it is just straightforward and similar to what we had in the first situation. If he is here and playing regularly and winning games, hopefully everything will sort itself out and he will stay here, and Bristol will allow him to do that. He did really well, and that is probably one of the reasons Bristol City did bring him back. Hopefully we will just carry on doing what he was doing, because we were getting good results when he was here.”
John Sheridan was trying and failed in an attempt to bring in another loanee before today's 5pm loan deadline. He said at lunchtime: "I have inquired about one or two players. Whether it will happen, I don't know. If I can get another one in on loan, I will. But if I can keep everyone fit I think I have got a strong squad."
Bobby Reid has re-joined Plymouth Argyle on a loan deal from Bristol City until January 3rd. The youngster was recalled part of the way through the second month of his previous loan spell at Home Park due to an injury crisis at Bristol City but he has now rejoined the greens.
Reuben Reid has accepted a caution from the police after he admitted using threatening behaviour towards a fellow nightclubber. Reid had scored the winning goal against Tranmere Rovers just hours before he was arrested by police on suspicion of affray near the Oceana nightclub. Officers were called to Barbican Approach shortly after 2.40am on October 12 by security staff and CCTV operators who reported a group of men involved in a “public order incident” near the club. No further action will be taken.
Today's scheduled development fixture against Cheltenham Town has been postponed. The pitch at Cheltenham's training ground, Seasons, is frozen and unplayable.
Ben Purrington will be back in action for Argyle tomorrow after a two month lay off with a broken wrist. He will play in a match which is part of the Final Third Development League Cup. It will be played at Cheltenham's Quat Goose Lane training ground at 2pm.
John Sheridan has contemplated the idea of bringing more loan signings into Plymouth Argyle before the deadline of Thursday at 5pm and will be talking to Argyle owner James Brent. The manager said: “I am looking at one or two players. If I want a player, the chairman will tell me yes or no, but I am sure the chairman will be fine if I want to bring somebody in. He has never said no since I have been here. I just think a new face would strengthen us and give us a bit of a lift. It is a chance for someone to get football. I would not really say there is a position I am looking for. I think another body would just give us a lift and it pushes the players who are in their position already. Obviously Jason Banton was back today, Ben is back playing next week, so there is two players added to the squad. If I can keep everyone fit, I think we have a strong enough squad. The most important thing is keeping everyone fit. If I keep everyone fit, I am comfortable with what I have got. If I feel as though I need to bring in one or two to strengthen us, hopefully I can do that.”
JOHN Sheridan believes the performance of his Argyle side was not reflected in their 1-0 defeat to Mansfield Town. Sheridan praised many aspects of Argyle's display and believed they were unlucky not to come away with all three points. He commented that he was taking the positives from the match: “To be fair, I do not think we played that badly today. I thought we played alright, but we have not got the result we wanted. It is a soft, soft goal to concede right before half time, and it just gives them impetus to hang on to the result. I was comfortable in the game. We had one or two balls that were going in the box but I never really felt they were threatening us. I would have been happy to go in 0-0 at half time, and then possibly the game would have had a different outcome. We had a go in the second half. We were brave and trying to get something out of the game. We left ourselves open once or twice but I do not mind that – we were trying to get a goal. I was quite pleased with the performance, even though these are the games that, if you want to get out of the division, you need to be getting something out of. It just did not go our way. There were one or two balls that went across the box in the second half, as well.
“I have just said to the players that they have just got to bounce back and pick up three points next week. That will show our character. We have been playing well of late so we just need to take this on the chin and say it is a bad result for us, but it is not a bad performance and we take that into next week. I think we are playing okay (away from home), but obviously I would like better results. We have just got to maintain our home form, and hopefully we will start picking up one or two away from home. It is a big, big three points now next week in our home game. We have just got to try and take it on the chin. It was a bad result but I do not think it was a bad performance.”
Sheridan also admitted that Mansfield's late change of manager always presented the possibility to galvanise the stags: “They made one or two changes, obviously with the manager going, and I do not like any manager losing his job. It just galvanises them a little bit. A new manager comes in and plays one or two different players. They have been struggling, and possibly the fans have been getting on the manager’s back, but obviously he is not here today. It is just one of those things: when a manager goes and, for some reason, somebody else comes in and makes some different decisions and the players lift themselves. When they are at home they have got one or two decent results, so I expected a tough game. They passed it a little bit more than I thought they would. The big lad Vadaine Oliver was aerial and was getting flick-ons. They are a strong team at home, and I think Paul Cox – when he was here – did a good job to get them where they are.”
Captain Curtis Nelson has said that whilst it hurts Argyle to lose their first match in quite a few games, they will be able to pick themselves up and go again on Saturday: “We have not lost in a while and it really does hurt. It hurts to lose. We have got to start another run – a run of clean sheets and a run of being undefeated. It starts again on Saturday. What more is there to say? We have got to go again. There’s no point in mulling over it too long. We’ll be back in again on Monday, watch the DVD, look where we’ve gone wrong, and look to improve for Saturday. That’s the most important thing now – the game’s gone now. We can’t do anything about it. We can learn from it. There’s no point sulking.”
Argyle's unbeaten league run has come to an end following a 1-0 defeat away to Mansfield who lost their manager the night before the match. A goal on the stroke of half-time following a defensive mix-up was the game's only goal and in spite of a strong ladt 20 minutes, Argyle could not find an equaliser. Argyle: McCormick, Nelson, McHugh(Smalley), Hartley, Mellor, O'Connor, Cox, Blizzard(Banton), Kellett, Reid, Alessandra(Norburn). Subs: Bittner, Harvey, Thomas, Morgan.
Dominic Blizzard has targeted a better away form as the Pilgrims look to build on their unbeaten league run. Blizzard also stated his admiration for many of his fellow players for their role in the run so far: “It will be a very hard game against Mansfield, and a very different game from Portsmouth, but we will go into it with confidence. If we can start reproducing our home form when we are away, then we have got a very good chance of doing what we want to do. The fans have been excellent, home and away. They keep coming and, hopefully, we can keep giving them something to cheer about. They haven’t had much to cheer about the last few years. I know the boys are working hard to try to rectify things that have gone on in the past and get us back up where we belong. We won’t get carried away. We haven’t done anything yet. It means nothing if we start losing a few and don’t produce the form we showed on Saturday.
“Kelvin and Andy were excellent against Portsmouth. I think we look a little bit more dynamic when they are joining in. They have got pace and give you another option if they are on the front foot, like they were on Saturday.”
Argyle will travel to Sheffield United in the second round of the FA Cup after the Yorkshire club beat Crewe Alexandra 2-0 in the replay of their first round FA Cup match. The game will be played from December 6-9th.
John Sheridan was very pleased with the way Argyle played in their Dockyard Derby victory over Pompey yesterday: especially in the first half. He said that things tailed off slightly in the second 45 but were still of a good standard: “I thought we played really, really well – probably one of the best performances since I have been here as a manager. It just gives you that lifeline, obviously getting three goals and you go in at half time 3-0. I am very pleased with the way we played. We knew that if we got at them, we could cause them problems, and we have got those players in the team. It makes you look a good team when you are moving the ball quickly with purpose, one or two touch. I will show the video to the lads and say that this is what I am trying to install in us. But I thought the first half was very good, and full credit to the players in the way they went about the game.
“They are working hard. We are working with our shape, and we do not want to concede. You can see that. You know me: second half I thought we just probably gave the ball away too cheaply, even though we had some really good chances. I just felt like we gave the ball away too cheaply when we were in good possession, but games like this always pan out like that. I told them at half time that all I wanted from the second half was a clean sheet, and that is what they gave us. Our desire again, even in the last ten minutes; Portsmouth are trying to score, but we are working our socks off to keep a clean sheet, and it is a good habit. I will not get carried away. I am a perfectionist, so I will keep going on. I cannot grumble with the way we played in the first half, against a strong team who will be up there at the end of the season.
“It is nice for the players; I said to go out and enjoy the game, because these are the games you want to play in. It was a big crowd and a good atmosphere, and we are playing against a big club and a strong team in our division in Portsmouth. With any team who gets promotion, or is trying to get promotion, I think home form is vitally important. You win your home games and pick up whatever you can on your travels. We are playing with a bit of confidence and a bit of purpose, and we are very hard to play against at the moment. I just said to the players that, with the way we are playing at home at the moment, we believe we will win every game, whoever we are playing. Even from the kick-off, I thought we started really well. After even five or ten seconds, we got them on the back foot, and it just gets the crowd lifted. To come out and win the game we have done, playing really good football, with three goals and not conceding, and with it being on telly, hopefully people will take note of Plymouth and hopefully feel that we are a contender.”
Sheridan reserved particular praise for the two wing-backs in Argyle's system- praising their capabilities in both attack and defence. He said: "The two wing-backs were like wingers today,” said John. “They really got in good areas and created good goal-scoring chances. Kelvin is very good going forward. He is a good defender as well, but he has just got the energy and I think he enjoys that formation we play. He is naturally fit; he has played every game this season and not missed a day of training. I do not think a week off would do much harm, and he has rested leg. He has come through and hopefully he will not get a reaction. He was up there with one of our better performances. Andy Kellett is going to stay again. I thought in the first half he was tremendous today. He is playing well. He will not force things; he will just come out and start again. That is the sign of a good player. He is only young, but even in the air, he was winning balls today, and he is only small. He has got that drive in him, and determination in the way he plays. He is very relaxed, and usually his decisions on the ball are very good.”
Reuben Reid declared himself unsurprised at Argyle's ability to take a 3-0 lead after just 30 minutes in the Dockyard derby. The forward went on to talk about the size of the two fanbases and the general character of Argyle as a club: “We had a short time to prepare for the game, but obviously we prepared well for it and I think that showed in our first-half performance where we’ve come out and we’ve finished the game quite early. I don’t think people realise we’re quite a fit bunch so, before the game gets started, some of the senior lads will get the lads fired up, saying ‘Let’s nick two goals in the first 15 minutes, run over the top of them.’ I don’t think a lot of teams expect that. When we’re pressing teams and playing at a high tempo – that’s when we’re a good side.
“It’s two massive clubs playing in League 2; great fan bases – Portsmouth fans will say theirs is the best but, in my opinion, Plymouth’s is the best, the way we travel and the support we get – so these games feel like good matches. I think every player would agree, once you are playing in that scenario, that environment, it does lift you. That can only help us. We have not done anything yet, but I think we are showing now that consistency in performance. We, as a group – along with the manager and the staff – now know what we’re going to get with certain players and I think the team and this club hasn’t had that over the last few years. We have got a good bunch – honest lads. No personalities really stand out in a bad way; everyone’s driving together. Hopefully, if we can keep it up, we can be there or thereabouts.”
Argyle's excellent home form has continued with a 3-0 win against Portsmouth in the televised Dockyard derby in which all goals came in the opening half-hour. Lewis Alessandra was brought down for a penalty which Reuben Reid duly converted and then Alessandra turned goalscorer just 15 minutes later. Reid got his second and the game's final goal on the 30 minute mark. Argyle now climb to 4th in the league and have notched up 7 home wins in a row. Argyle: McCormick, Nelson. McHugh, Hartley, Mellor, O'Connor, Cox, Blizzard(Harvey), Kellett, Reid(Smalley), Alessandra(Morgan). Subs: Bittner, Thomas, Allen, Norburn.
Bobby Reid has been recalled by Bristol City under the terms of his 24 hour recall clause. John Sheridan was informed last night and gave his thanks to Bristol City for allowing the loan to take place: “We have known from day one what the circumstances were. Steve let me have him but I knew he could be recalled. Bristol City have picked up a couple of injuries, so Bobby will be involved. I found out last night, just after the game. I totally respect Steve’s decision, and I really appreciate that he let me have Bobby. Steve wants him and I totally respect that. It gives an opportunity for lads who have not been playing as much, and gives them an opportunity to fill in his role. We will see what the situation is, where we lie, and I make that decision probably next week. There is always that danger, and that is the way it is with loans. He did really well for me, and hopefully something in the future might happen if Bristol City agree. He was really happy here and enjoying his football.”
In other news, the loan of Andy Kellett has been extended for another month and he will remain an Argyle player until the middle of December.
John Sheridan hopes that the 2-0 loss to Coventry in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy area quarter-final will prove a learning curve for his team. The manager went on to give examples of a lack of knowhow during the game which he hopes will be rectified: “It was a good lesson, and a good team effort. I would have liked us to have kept the ball a bit better, and have that little bit of game know-how that I keep going on about. This is what you get when you play teams a bit higher. Madine, up front, is clever. He has played at a higher level. He does not run around a lot, but his touch is good and he always gets in positions that give you a problem. I think it is just the little things I try and keep telling them: just the game know-how, and make sure your touch is good for 95% of the game – I accept people are going to mis-control, but we must really work hard to take care of the ball if we are going to go anywhere. People can say that so or so can be playing higher, like young Curtis Nelson. I think that was a good learning curve, with the goal from Madine, and then the run from Nouble. He has just got to learn those little things if he ever does play higher and come up against better players. The first goal disappoints me, because I am looking 20 seconds before the goal, and it is too easy how they end up getting a corner. We have done well from set plays this year, and we should not concede from them. For the second goal, I even think Nelson should take a booking there. He has got O’Connor there behind him to try and win the ball. I think we worked really hard, but with our ball-retention in the opposition’s half could have been better – because if you do that, you will give problems for the opposition.”
Argyle are out of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy following a 2-0 loss to Coventry City at the Ricoh Arena. Gary Madine and Frank Nouble scored the goals which saw the hosts progress to the Southern Semi-finals along with Bristol City, Gillingham and Leyton Orient. Argyle: McCormick, Nelson, McHugh(Morgan), Hartley, O'Connor, Cox, Blizzard(Norburn), Alessandra, Kellett, Reid(Thomas), Smalley. Subs: Bittner, Harvey.
John Sheridan is not afraid of facing sides in a higher division and has re-iterated that the Johnstone's Paint Trophy is a rare chance for Argyle to play at Wembley: “We’ve done well against a couple of first division teams we’ve played so hopefully that will continue. We know we’ve got players who can perform on the day who are capable of competing against teams in a higher division. We’ll go in again, confident.
“It’s probably the best chance for a club like us at this moment in time to get to Wembley,” he said. It’s a really important game in my eyes; the lads know that I want to win every game. I think they’re up for the fight and we’ll give it a really good go.”
Kelvin Mellor's ever-present record for Argyle will come to an end tomorrow as he is ruled out of the game at Coventry with an injury. Jason Banton will also be absent. Sheridan detailed the availability of his squad, saying: “Deane Smalley is fit but Jason Banton isn’t. He has still got a sore knee. Dom Blizzard will come back, along with Smalley. I’m happy with what we have got and there are only five subs allowed anyway. Kelvin has got a tight hamstring. He probably could have played tomorrow but I don’t want to risk him.
“Andy (Kellett) is playing tomorrow night, and if he doesn’t get injured he will play in a big game on Saturday. He’s really enjoying it here and he has done really well for us. I will probably have a quiet word in his ear after tomorrow’s game but if he carries on doing what he’s doing and Bolton are happy with it, hopefully we can sort something out.”
Argyle have been drawn away to Crewe or Sheffield United in the second round of the FA Cup. We will play either the Railwaymen or the Blades on the weekend of December 5-8. The two sides drew 0-0 on Saturday; they will replay at Brammall Lane on November 18 to determine where we are to travel in the next round.
John Sheridan admitted that in spite of Argyle's progression to the next round of the FA Cup the performance was not as good as it could be. However Sheridan noted that Argyle nonetheless achieved their primary objective which was to get into the second round- unlike some of their League Two counterparts. Sheridan said: “We are in Round Two, and this is the FA Cup; obviously there’s the game last night that you all would have watched, and there are even one or two results today, like Southend losing at home to Chester. It is just that magic of the FA Cup. I am pleased we are in the hat; we know we have got to play better, and we can play a lot better. But we are in there. We will wait and see who we get. I think you are always just looking for a home game, if you can get one. We will just try and get as far as we can. Obviously I think about the financial side – and I am sure everyone does – of getting a big team, and trying to get something out of it. We are not going to win it, but while you are in it, you are still excited about who you could possibly face.”
Sheridan however did compliment the display of the visitors AFC Fylde and spoke of the problems they caused to his Argyle side: “I will give credit to Fylde: they had a real go and I knew they would,” said John. They have been winning games for two years. The manager is doing a great job there, they are playing good football and have one or two decent players, so full credit to them. Fylde gave us some problems. When we were 1-0 up, the lad Michael Barnes has gone through. We were taking a corner and he ends up making Luke make a save.
“They played really well, and I thought they deserved a goal. Obviously I am happy they did not, but I am disappointed in the way we played/“We are on a good run and, again, it is a clean sheet, but I thought we were fortunate to do that today. It is always difficult when a team comes here and put men behind the ball, but sometimes you have got to be brave and make the right decisions, and still be prepared for the opposition to create chances. We just left ourselves open, even when we went 1-0 up. You get the goal which is good, but where we have been solid regarding not letting in goals or even chances, I thought we were very sloppy today. If we are given better opposition, they would take their chances. Fortunately for us, the chances Fylde had, they were not clinical with them, so they gave us a bit of a break.”
Argyle had to go without forwards Deane Smalley and Jason Banton yesterday due to injuries. Both players were initially intended to start the game. Sheridan explained that this required a tactical re-shuffle and spoke about the impact of the fringe players who have not currently been getting much first team football: “Smalley was playing when I named my team yesterday. He just woke up with a really bad neck and to be fair, he was struggling with it. He has been looking really sharp in training as well, and was really sharp yesterday. Jason Banton was down to play but did his knee at Burton, and had a couple of days off. We planned and did all the set pieces with the team I was originally going to play with – with Smalley and Jason in the team. Carl McHugh was not going to play, and I was going to play a different formation; I was going to play a four at the back.
“Obviously I had to juggle, and it was a chance for me to give on or two a bit of game time, but at the same time I wanted to win the game. It is difficult for the ones who are not playing are not getting a lot of football, and I think you could clearly see that. They were getting tired towards the end. I speak to one or two of the young players, or players that were not in the first team, and they are playing two or three games a season, and I do not want that. Luckily, around the corner we have games coming up now, but I think with the ones who are not playing on a Saturday, you could see the lack of football."
Marvin Morgan echoed the views of his manager on the game and also looked ahead to the draw for the second round which will be made tomorrow evening: “We were very lucky, but it’s all about getting in the next round. We could have played unbelievable and lost 1-0. They gave us a good game. I come from the non-league and we used to be buzzing for these games; with the stadium and everything, you are up for the game before you played the game. The gaffer warned us throughout the week ‘Listen, this is not going to be an easy game’. I think the fans expected us to beat them 10-0 but, as we all know, football doesn’t work like – look at what happened to Exeter. It’s the FA Cup; everyone loves the FA Cup – you just don’t know what it’s all about. It can make careers; there’s going to be a non-league team that a player could go on from and play professional football. It’s one of the greatest cups in the world, but it’s tough and they gave us a good game. They had a lot of the ball. Again, that comes down to playing at a nice stadium. They were passing the ball well and it’s a blessing in disguise they didn’t score. They had chances but we have to look at as another clean sheet. I’m glad we got the result and that’s what it comes down to.
“When the second-round draw comes on Monday, the result, or how we played, or who scored will not be brought up – we’re in the next round. I want a home tie because we are solid at home. You don’t want to go to a non-league ground, it’s not just about the pitch - it’s about the whole surroundings. The club had had money problems in the past and obviously it all helps if we were to get to the third round and a massive draw and get it on TV – we’d be absolutely loving it because it brings in money and it all helps.”
Argyle are through to the second round of the FA Cup after beating AFC Fylde 2-0 at Home Park. Peter Hartley and Marvin Morgan both scored headers from Ollie Norburn corners either side of half-time. Argyle: McCormick, Nelson, McHugh, Hartley, Mellor(O'Connor), Cox, Norburn, Harvey(Thomas), Kellett, Morgan, Reid(Alessandra). Subs: Bittner, Allen, Bentley, Blizzard.
Luton have won both the manager and player of the month awards for October: John Still and Mark Cullen winning the awards for which John Sheridan and Carl McHugh had been nominated respectively.
McHugh himself echoed the words of his manager, shrugging off the applause for his nomination: “I think anybody who played for us in October could have got it really, because we had a lot of really good performances: Luke McCormick, Peter Hartley and Curtis Nelson, just to name three, were brilliant, as well. I’m more worried about winning games, really. It’s a team game and a combined effort, so we just got to keep that mentality. We’ve got a really strong team spirit, and we’re going to need that towards the end of the season as we all go through sticky spells as well.
John Sheridan has said that his nomination for the League Two manager of the month for October is not just down to him but also his players for their fine work collecting 13 points from a possible 15 in the month: “It is not for me really – it is for the players. I have had a great response and reaction from the players in the last month. It should be Team of the Month, not Manager of the Month, because the players have won it with their performances out on the pitch. When I was at Chesterfield when I won the league, I didn’t get Manager of the Month once, so it does not really worry me. But it is always good to receive recognition. It gets people talking about Plymouth.”
Andy Kellett will be allowed to play for Argyle in their FA Cup game against AFC Fylde on Saturday. The terms of his loan did not initially allow him to play in cup matches but after re-negotiation, the young left-sider will be able to line up for the greens against Fylde. Bobby Reid however will have to sit out the match as Bristol City have not allowed him to play.
Deane Smalley is waiting patiently to get his chance to start for the Argyle first team- but accepts it will be difficult with the form that Reuben Reid and Lewi Alessandra are currently in. Smalley: “It’s very frustrating for me, but I just have to keep working hard week in, week out. They have been doing really well so there is not much I can do or say. I have just got to keep doing what I’m doing in training every day and when I get my chance I have got to take it. If Lewi and Reuben are scoring goals week in, week out I’m going to try my best to keep them on their toes. If they are scoring, there is nothing I can do. I have just got to work my hardest in training and hopefully I get my chance soon. In the last six or seven games we have been unbelievable. I think the lads have done really well. I have had to take a step back and watch from the sideline. I have just got to contribute whatever I can, whether it be 10 minutes, 15 minutes or the full 90.
“Reuben has been scoring goals left, right and centre, whether it will be from the penalty spot or within open play.It’s a joy to play with Reuben when I get on the pitch. You know what you are going to get from him. He’s going to score you a bagful of goals every season, and everyone can see how good his link-up play is. He’s a strong, quick lad and his all-round play is brilliant.”
Argyle's youth team have gone out of the FA Youth Cup after losing 4-0 at home to Portsmouth. Argyle went 1-0 down early on in the game and conceded three goals in the second half. Argyle: Hannah, Hughes, Moxham, Jones, Roberts, Sargent(Richards), Miller(Fletcher), Hall, Palfrey(Vincent), Lane, Rooney. Subs: Harvey, Knowles
Argyle are joining forces with the Royal Navy to commemorate Armistice Day. The Pilgrims’ managerial staff and players will stand shoulder to shoulder with representatives of the senior service before training at Home Park on Tuesday, November 11. Royal Navy chaplain Ralph Barber will say a prayer at first. Then, at 11am, Argyle captain Luke McCormick and a navy counterpart lay a wreath on the centre spot in memory of Westcountry military men and women who have died in the services. The wreath-laying will be followed by the Last Post and an observance of the traditional two minutes’ silence.
Argyle have had two nominations for player and manager of the month for League Two in October. Carl McHugh and John Sheridan have been nominated respectively.
John Sheridan has praised the desire but not the performance of his Argyle side following yesterday's 1-1 draw at Burton Albion. Whilst the manager admits that the quality of the football on display was not as good as it could be, the character required to get a draw from behind at a difficult place could not be understated: “They are a decent team and have been in the play-offs for the last two seasons. They have always been strong at home and it was a difficult game. The most pleasing thing is we have gone a goal behind and have come back to get something out of it. I think we showed good character. I don’t think we played well but, again, the desire to get something out of the game was there. We were a bit flat in the first half and I said to the players ‘you are on a good run, let’s keep it going and stay unbeaten’ and I changed one or two things. I went 4-4-2 and I thought there was more shape to us. Jason, Coxy and Smalley all did well when they came on. It was good character to keep the unbeaten run. Obviously, we all wanted to win the game and we know the importance of picking up three points. If we can get the result we want in the next league game this will look a really good point.
"The character was there and you can see we are not going to give in. Last season, we might have ended up losing that game two or three-nil. It was a tough game. They get the ball forward early, but with a bit of quality. The big lad Lucas Akins was a problem us all day with his directness. I thought he played well but we grinded it out and got a point. These points can become really valuable towards the end of the season.
“Even when we got the goal to get us back in the game, we kept giving the ball away cheaply. I keep saying to the team it’s very important that we try to retain the ball for long periods in the opposition’s half and I don’t think we did that today. But Reuben has done well to get the penalty and I’m pleased he put it away. I didn’t watch it, though.”
Kelvin Mellor admitted his disappointment that Argyle's run of games without conceding a goal had come to an end and echoed Sheridan's words about character. Mellor said: “It was gutting, conceding a goal, but it was only a matter of time – no team keeps a clean sheet for a full season so we can’t expect not to be conceding goals. But it was only one and we got a point in the end, a well-earned point. You go one down and it knocks the stuffing out of you. Then we scored and we sort of believed again and thought ‘maybe we can win this’. It was a good point. We weren’t at our best today – we know that – but we grinded and stuck together and ended up with a point, so we’re happy.”
Argyle have finally conceded a goal after their run of almost 10 hours without doing so yet continued their unbeaten record with a 1-1 draw at managerless Burton Albion. Former green Alex MacDonald put the Brewers into the lead shortly after the half-hour mark but Reuben Reid scored for Argyle with just 15 minutes to go from the penalty spot after he was fouled. Argyle: McCormick, Nelson, McHugh(Cox), Hartley, Mellor, O'Connor(Banton), Bobby Reid, Blizzard, Kellett, Reid, Alessandra(Smalley). Subs: Bittner, Norburn, Harvey, Morgan.
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