Match Preview: Weston super-Mare (A) – Saturday 23rd July 2022 – 15:00
By Robert Santonna
We succumbed to our second loss of our preseason campaign on Tuesday. Whilst it is always disappointing to see the lads lose, I think we must keep some points in the forefront of our mind. Firstly, the average age of the squad is 23 years and 8 months, this shows David is thinking of the future in his signings. Secondly, we still have a few trialists in and around the team. Personally, I will not be making a judgement until the first game of the season. By then, we will have got a concrete squad together and we will start to see the team gel and the performances will follow. I think the squad need to experience defeat, in order for them to rebuild and come together as a team. I think everyone would rather us lose in preseason than in a competitive league match!
Today we take on Premier South outfit Weston Super Mare. The Somerset side finished in a playoff position last season. However, they were knocked out following a defeat at the hands of Hayes and Yeading. This will be our 33rd meeting in all competitions against the Seagulls. And will be our first since 09/10 in the Conference South. However, our record is strong. Winning 16 times, 10 draws and just 6 losses.
Weston Super Mare recently completed the signing of a certain Reuben Reid. If my memory serves me correctly, was part of that former Football League side that could only beat us on pens or draw with us. Mr Reid didn’t score against us in all three games last season. Long may that continue!
The Seagulls had the second highest average attendance last season (682). They will be there in their numbers today. Hopefully we can match that!
Played for both!
There are no known former Terras in the home squad but left-back/assistant manager Scott Laird has two brothers (Callum and Jamie) who both played in Claret and Blue in 14/15.
We do of course have one current Terra who called the Optima Stadium his home for two different loan spells. One from Barnsley and one from Boreham Wood. Brad Ash was born in the town and was a youth player there before getting snapped up by Barnsley at a young age.
Players to watch from the home team:
Despite Reuben Reid turning out for our rivals in previous years, he is at a better Somerset club now. He will be one to watch out for!
Players to watch from the Terras:
New signing Keelan O’Connell will be one to keep an eye out for. Alongside Trialist #20 that started against Frome on Tuesday. Thirdly, Tom Bearwish, who has been our main source of positive attacking moves so far!
It will be interesting to see if David and his team have made any tactical or personnel changes. I believe today is the perfect chance for the lads to make a statement performance. To show some of the criticism is unjustified and they have the mental strength to bounce back from back-to-back defeats.