Steven Schumacher at Yeovil

Schumacher's Yeovil Reaction

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As Argyle's pre-season fixtures list drew to a close with a 2-0 win over Yeovil Town, boss Steven Schumacher reflected on another positive day, and another challenge overcome.

Argyle were without goalkeeper Mike Cooper, who was missing because of maintenance treatment on a long-standing finger ailment. Mickel Miller was rested having already played plenty of pre-season minutes, while Panutche Camara, still on the road to recovery, missed out having felt tight following Friday training.

Argyle were made to work for their win by a well-organised and resolute Yeovil team that restricted them to few chances in the first period, despite The Pilgrims’ dominance.

Yeovil manager – and former Pilgrim – Chris Hargreaves was aware of Argyle’s slick 5-0 win against Torquay in midweek, and set up accordingly, packing the centre of the pitch and defending the penalty area stoutly.

Schumacher set about a few small half-time tweaks, and with a quicker tempo after the break, Hardie scored after a neat passing move involving Adam Randell, Finn Azaz and Danny Mayor.

Azaz then scored after Macaulay Gillesphey’s long-range shot was too hot for goalkeeper Grant Smith to handle.

“The first half was quite difficult because the game was quite slow,” said Schumacher. “The pitch was quite slow. The way they defended was quite deep so there wasn’t much space for us to get in and penetrate. They were hard to break down, and we resorted to long shots, which happens sometimes.

“We spoke at half-time about to try to work on certain movements, just to try to be a bit more positive and try to get behind them a little bit quicker. Within a couple of minutes of the second half we did that, and we score a goal. The game then opened up, and I thought our second goal was a good goal, well worked.

“After that, the substitutions and sendings off killed it as a contest. It was good, really pleasing to come out of it with some good goals. There’s some little things for us to think about and improve on. It’s also another clean sheet.”

It is a little unusual to speak of red cards in pre-season, but two were shown after Bali Mumba clashed with Yeovil midfielder Matt Worthington.

Schumacher explained: “Their number 7 tried to leave a couple on Danny Mayor, and Danny had a bit of a word with him. Maybe he was getting frustrated. When Bali nicked the ball off him, he put in a really reckless challenge, he swiped him round the knee. It wasn’t good to see.

“Bali’s reaction also wasn’t great. He needs to learn from that. When you are the type of player he is, and you go past people, people are going to kick you. He shouldn’t have reacted the way he did.

“A lot of their players ran in, and then a load of our players ran in to protect one of their own. I asked the referee could he just take both players off and substitute them. Chris [Hargreaves] did the same. The referee said he has to go by the letter and send them off. Thankfully it doesn’t affect next season.”

Next season begins on Saturday, at Home Park against Barnsley. Following a trip to Spain, Argyle have concluded preparations with a draw and a narrow defeat respectively against Sky Bet Championship teams Swansea City and Bristol, before the wins against Vanarama National League teams Torquay and Yeovil.

The boss is content with the squad’s build-up, and is itching to get the campaign under way.

“That is pre-season done,” he said. “Next week is the real work. From Monday onwards, we’re preparing for the season.

“I’m delighted pre-season is over. I’m really pleased with how it’s gone. We got a lot out of it. We’ve worked on a few different things that we want to do. We’re ready to rock into the season.”

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