Signs and Times
ANOTHER resounding Argyle pre-season win, this time against Tavistock AFC, provided important game time for many players - and more positive signs for manager Derek Adams.
A much-changed Argyle side ran out 7-2 winners against their local opposition, with six different players on the score-sheet: Alex Battle (2), David Goodwillie, Jimmy Spencer, Graham Carey, Jake Jervis and Louis Rooney.
Much like his side's victory against St Blazey, however, Derek feels that the fitness levels and work rate shown by the squad are cause for more praise than the 16 goals already netted.
"It's obviously just about getting game time for the players," said Adams. "They all got some good game time tonight - a couple of the younger players got into the squad, Sonny Bradley got a first start, Gary Miller as well, [Ryan] Donaldson, [David] Goodwillie and [Jimmy] Spencer.
"It's probably irrelevant," said the boss on the goal tally. "It's always important at this time to get confidence and get goals and come to the local communities early in the season. Tavistock has been a fantastic football club for us over the years. Our youth setup comes here most weeks, and I think it's important to show that appreciation."
A brace for young talent Alex Battle will have caught the eye of many, and Adams believes strong showings such as his against opposition such as Tavistock are important at this stage of Alex's fledgling career. The same goes for Jordan Bentley, who also played the full 90 minutes and looked far from out of place.
"It was good for him," said Derek on Battle. "It gives him the opportunity to see the kind of opposition he's going to play against this season with the development squad. It was good for him as well as Jordan Bentley to get that opportunity."
Battle and Bentley were part of an experimental side at Langsford Park - but far from a weak one, with many of Argyle's new signings and established first-team players on display. Derek expects to field a similar line-up in the side's next game against Bovey Tracey, though Jordan Slew and Connor Smith could well still be left out as a precautionary measure.
"We'll have much of the same squad, nearly, as tonight," said Derek on the Bovey Tracey game on July 13. "We'll have a couple more younger players in the team than we did [tonight].
As for the pair of new signings: "They'll probably not play tomorrow night - they've just got slight problems.
"Jordan Slew got into a rabbit hole on Saturday and went over his ankle. He's out, and Connor Smith has just got a slight problem; he'll probably miss out tomorrow. Just a slight fatigue - nothing serious."