AS sure as night follows day and the Football League Show follows Match of the Day, the appointment of a manager raises expectations of fresh faces.Between John Sheridan’s appointment on a Sunday and his first game six days later, two players arrived at Home Park, bringing with them very different backgrounds.
First to arrive was Ronan Murray, a 21-year-old Irishman on-loan from Ipswich; a forward, young and keen and still learning trade, but with potential talent aplenty. He played the full 90 minutes on his Home Park bow, catching the eye and setting up Argyle’s second goal, which was turned in neatly by Paris Cowan-Hall.
“The second one was a great little ball from Ronan,” said Sheridan, “He’s a clever little footballer, you can see that in his touch and his awareness.
“He joined up with us not so long ago, and he’s had a long journey, but you can see the bits of quality he’s got in his game. Some of the balls he played across the goal, with his weak foot, were quality and a striker’s dream.”
The second arrival was as different as you could get. Experienced and much-travelled Guy Branston’s cameo in Plymouth in 1998-99 was one of many he has made for clubs across the land. The centre-back is back at Home Park, until the end of this season, and also played a full ninety in the heart of Argyle’s defence.
“He’s come in and hasn’t played for three weeks,” said John. “I know what Guy’s all about, with his enthusiasm for the game. And he knows the game. He probably talks too much, but I like him as a lad.
“You could see the lift the players got from him. He gets on with everyone, he talks to the younger players and tell them off when he has to. But he’ll give them a hug when he has to. That’s what I like about him.
“He’s had a lot of clubs in his career, but I know what he’s all about. I think he’s got a bit of respect for me, he knows what type of person I am, that I won’t stand any messing from him. He knows that.
“And I know what he can give us, especially in the position we are in. He can give us that drive and determination to get us out of where we are.”