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Dempster: Preparation is key

17 October 2013

Defender John Dempster is pleased with how preparations are going ahead of our Sky Bet League Two match at Torquay United this weekend.

Our side, who currently sit in seventh position, are set to make the gruelling 245-mile trek to Torquay tomorrow, before staying overnight in the English Riviera.

Nevertheless, Dempster insists that long journeys are just ‘part and parcel’ of the game.

He said: “We’re fortunate that we have got a chairman willing to put us up in a decent hotel, a good bus to travel down on, so there are no excuses on our behalf.

“The coach journey isn’t exciting as you might think. It’s a bit of a ‘chill out’ journey, where you can get your feet up and relax. 

“Generally, journeys go pretty quick. There’s a poker school that goes on, one or two of the lads tend to listen to music and some of us just read a book.”

The clash at Plainmoor promises to be an intriguing affair, as Alan Knill’s Torquay side have won just one of their five matches on home soil so far this term.

By contrast, our team have registered 10 points from their last four away trips, and haven’t lost away from home in league action since the opening day of the campaign.

“So far this season, we’ve been half-decent on the road and we’ll look to continue that,” said Dempster.

“Torquay is a tough place to go, so a point wouldn’t be a bad result, but we want to go there and try to collect all three.

“Torquay know the majority of clubs they play have either had a long journey, or stayed overnight in a hotel, so they’ll probably try and use that to their advantage.”

On assessing our season so far, which has seen us win five of our first 11 matches in Sky Bet League Two, the 30-year-old added: “It’s been very positive, but we’ve got to remember where we’ve come from.

“We were a Conference (Premier) side last year and there are a lot of decent ex-Football League clubs, still trying their best to get out of that league.

“We’ve achieved that goal and are now trying to establish ourselves at a higher level. 

“I think that we’ve done well over the period of time we’ve been back in the Football League, but we’re looking to ‘kick on’ again now.

“We’ve had a couple of disappointing performances at home against Hartlepool United and Bristol Rovers, so it’s important that we bounce back and get to standards that we set earlier in the season.”


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