Tuesday 13th April 2021 | 19:00
Gander Green Lane
Address: Gander Green Lane, Sutton , SM1 2EY
Second will face third in the Vanarama National League on Tuesday when Torquay United are the visitors to Gander Green Lane. Both sides have led the league this season, Torquay after a fine start to the season and U’s when the Devon side lost their form after Christmas. Now it’s Hartlepool who lead after their win against Notts County, with one point to U’s in second and now just three more to Torquay, whose early 2021 slump seems to have been ended with a run of three straight wins, and five in their last six games, and who have played one game more than Sutton.
When the sides met in January at Plainmoor defences were on top and a goalless draw looked likely from some time before the end, U’s unable to take advantage of playing against ten men for most of the second half after Dean Moxey had been sent off. That was the first time in four league visits that U’s had not won at Plainmoor, last season’s 2-1 win largely seen as the turning point of the season and the catalyst for what has come since. At Sutton, U’s have won two out of the three league games, most recently last season when a convincing performance was rewarded by goals from Rob Milsom (above, celebrating his free kick) and Will Randall.
Randall is one definite absentee tomorrow with a hamstring injury, while Kenny Davis (groin) is also still sidelined, but Matt Gray added Millwall’s Junior Tiensia to the squad on Monday, on loan until the end of the season, and he could be included in the squad tomorrow, while Coby Rowe played a full 90 minutes in the friendly game against Ebbsfleet on Friday. Harry Beautyman is scheduled to play his 250th game for U’s.
Torquay have recently welcomed back striker Danny Wright after injury, and he celebrated with the only goal of the game against Woking on Good Friday.
The game will be livestreamed and Sutton season ticket holders will have received a code to watch the game at no extra charge. Non season ticket holders can buy a pass for £9.50 here. We will also have a Mixlr commentary on the game.
|22||Junior Tiensia||46' 82'|
Sutton’s unbeaten fourteen game run was ended in this top of the table clash as a goal by Torquay captain Asa Hall nine minutes from time enabled the Devon side, who were recording their fourth successive win, to move level on points with U’s, one point behind leaders Hartlepool. It was a tight game that always looked likely to be decided by one goal, and that strike came when Hall dived to head in Adam Randell’s cross, and although U’s put pressure on the visitors in the time that remained, they were unable to find the equaliser.
Both sides had chances during the evening, with Dean Bouzanis in fine form for U’s until Hall’s header proved too well placed, while U’s accuracy in finishing let them down when several good opportunities arose. Bouzanis was first called in to action when he turned away a Connor Lemonheigh-Evans shot, while U’s best chance of the first half came after a fine run from Omar Bugiel, whose square pass left David Ajiboye with a clear shooting chance but he blazed high over the bar. Ajiboye ended another run with a shot that was pulled just wide, but at the end of a half in which defences had largely been on top, Torquay twice went close, Bouzanis having to be alert when a clearance rebounded back off Danny Wright and required sharp reactions from the Sutton keeper, and then when Jake Andrews rattled the crossbar after Dean Moxey’s long throw had been flicked on.
U’s made a change at half time, Joash Nembhard making way for debutant Junior Tiensia, with Harry Beautyman, making his 250th Sutton appearance, moving in to the centre of midfield, but Bouzanis remained the central figure, with a good save from Lemonheigh-Evans then, after a promising run from Isaac Olaofe had seen his shot diverted for a corner by Sam Sherring, an even better one just after the hour mark as he kept out Randell’s effort at point blank range after Armani Little had headed a cross down in to his path.
Sutton had chances as well, with Olaofe just failing to make sufficient contact with a fine cross from Jon Barden before outwitting Sherring and racing clear on the right before pulling the ball back for Bugiel, whose shot (above) was disappointingly miscued across goal, but with nine minutes to go the deadlock was broken as Hall’s diving header proved too accurate for Bouzanis. U’s reaction was to being on Donovan Wilson, Tiensia making way, and for the last ten minutes they pressed for an equaliser. Bugiel burst in to the penalty area on the left but was denied by Lucas Covolan, Torquay quickest to the rebound to clear, and referee Jacob Miles waved away penalty appeals when Wilson went down under pressure from Joe Lewis, but the most promising moment for U’s came deep in to stoppage time when Ajiboye surged through before setting up Wilson, who continued the forward rush until being cynically brought down by Ben Wynter, who happily accepted the yellow card. Beautyman sent the free kick too high, and the resulting goal kick was the last kick of the game.
Torquay: L Covolan, B Wynter, D Moxey(sub R Law 88), S Sherring, J Lewis, A Randell, A Hall, D Wright(sub S Boden 90+1), A Little, J Andrews(sub K Cameron 79). Subs n/u B Waters, S MacDonald. Booked: Wynter
Referee: Jacob Miles