Record-seeking Gulls deserve all their plaudits
THE Herald Express has rightly applauded this week the incredible achievement of Torquay United for going 10 consecutive Football League games without conceding a goal — a breathtaking 16 hours and one minute.
The Football League tells us only three clubs in the entire Football League history, since its foundation In 1888, gone 11 games without conceding a goal: Reading (1978-79), season, York City (1973-74) and Millwall (1925-26).
These are golden days for all Torquay United fans. I hope residents in Torbay have a sense of what this team has accomplished.
Under the manager, Paul Buckle, Torquay join the elite of the elite in terms of such a record. No wonder more and more fans throughout the country are waiting to see if Torquay (yes, Torquay) can break a football record going back to 1925.
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How many Football League matches have been played since it was formed in 1888? It must run into some hundreds of thousands of matches.
It is an understatement to call this a rare phenomena to keep 16 hours plus of consecutive clean sheets. It is Boy's Own football. Every player and every fan will always remember these incredible days. Stuff of legends.
My grandson, aged nine, and I go to Plainmoor to watch. He will be telling his kids about this team.
No wonder Manchester United manager, Alex Ferguson, arguably the greatest club manager of all time, invited Paul Buckle to a Manchester United training session last week.
Last Saturday, Torquay played at home to Bradford City. It was edge of the seat stuff every time Bradford had the ball in Torquay's half of the field.
If the game does have its quiet moments, there is always the humour of Torquay fans such as "We're top of the league. Who are you?" (Bradford City's manager is Peter Taylor, who was England's under-21 coach, and briefly took charge of England's national team. Bradford City have a 25,000 capacity, state-of-the-art stadium).
In the first match of the season, Torquay fans chanted to Northampton fans "We're going up. You're going down" — only a few minutes into the second half.
Torquay United should put up a plaque in the club with the names of all the players, and the manager, who took part in this amazing run of matches. Torbay's Mayor Nick Bye should consider offering a civic reception to the club as well.
There are no big stars in the team. They play as a team with a great spirit. They play for each other.
Next Saturday, Torquay are away to Port Vale in perhaps the most important match in the club's history.
The Herald Express will give us its usual full and comprehensive report next Monday with another splash of great photos.
Football is still the beautiful game!
CHRISTOPHER TITMUSS Denys Road Totnes