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Sending the Pilgrims to the promised land - A Plymouth Argyle story

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Tactics


Based on the strengths of the squad I've chosen a simple 4-5-1 tactic to start off with. Plymouth doesn't have the worst squad in League 2 but the expectation is that we'll struggle to stay up and there's little room for improvement financially.
 
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First challenge


A difficult Pompey challenge in the first round of the League Cup. The clash of the financially stricken harbour town teams.Though there's always been some rivalry between the teams, the recent financial worries of both have strengthen ties between the two sides' fans.
 
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Well, that went well

League Cup 1st Round

View attachment 380019
Portsmouth were awful and didn't show up at all. I thought this was going to be a struggle, but it was a walkover. Nicholas Bignall (on loan from Reading) was brilliant. Fun fact: in real life this fixture ended 3-0 for Plymouth...
 
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A good game against one of our direct competitors for a good start in the league. Loanee Bignall shows his value again by scoring the winning goal after Jamie Richards gave a penalty away.



A bad first half against one of the better teams cost us three points. Had to rest a couple of players and it cost me.


We were so much better but just couldn't score and Exeter got a lucky goal while our defence was sleeping.



And finally, to round off a bad month, we got kicked out of the League Cup by Derby. We did well, kept them from scoring after we'd had a lucky goal ourselves, then they got a soft penalty and a good solo strike from Ward to sent us packing. Bah.



Player of the Month

View attachment 380070

Nicholas Bignall. Five goals in five appearances, though sadly only one in the League.



 
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Only a draw but at least we end our run of defeats. Bignall scored again to give us a well deserved point.



One of those games where a lucky goal meant defeat.


This looked like another draw, until Bignall scored a late winner. First win in six games.



Still can't get a run of good games together though. We kept our lead through most of our first half and looked to gain at least a draw from it, until Rene Howe scored for Torquay on almost the last minute. Fans were devastated.

Another late Bignall goal meant another win against the number two in the League.


A 0-0 draw against Wimbledom might be boring, but it meant the first time we had two League games without a loss. Things seems to be on the up.


Player of the month

View attachment 380327
Rene Gilmartin. The goalie came back from a horrendous injury from before the season even began and suddenly we started keeping clean sheets. He has taken over from Jake Cole as our first keeper.

 
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Burton has been **** this season, so a 3-1 away win for us against them isn't that special, but it was our best League win yet, with two of our pung up and coming midfielders scoring as well.



Another home draw, against a team that was much better than us at that point in the season. I was using a very conservative counter strategy here, wanting to avoid a loss more than get a win.



Another draw, this time against one of the promotion contenders and in an away game is nothing to sneeze at, especially since we had to come from behind. Jed Harper-Penman is another young player I'm hopeful about.



This looks like an easy win, but for a team hovering above the relegation zone, York were though competition and shut us out for large parts of the game. We also keep picking up yellow cards.



A tough win. Luke Young impressed and is starting to be one of my best players.


We started October with a win, then two draws and another two wins for our best month yet in the League. And then Bradford came to visit and brought us crashing down to earth. Junior Agogo was a beast, they walked all through our defence and we seemed incapable of scoring ourselves...


Johnstone Paint Trophy

View attachment 475634

In the middle of all that we also had to content with the Johnstone's Paint Trophy. I wasn't too sorry to see Bournemouth beat us here.


Player of the Month

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Luke Young. He started scoring and he's getting better each game he plays.


 
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A bad start to the month as Plymouth was once again kicked out of a cup by Bournemouth. To be honest, I had no time for the FA Cup, just keeping going in the League was hard enough. The fans were not happy though.



A draw away against Rochdale wasn't bad, but it wasn't good either. Better than the defeat it looked it was going to be untul Bhasera scored in the last minute.




Another 1-1 draw, but this time it was at home and it was the opposition which scored in the 90th minute, dammit. One of those games were you're in control but just can't get the players to score.



A hard fought 0-1 away victory. At the time I hoped that this would get us back on route towards the promotion playoff places.




No such luck. A solitary goal gave Oxford United, then in second place in the League, the victory. November seemed to be another wasted month, with only one, unconvincing victory in it.




Perhaps the month wasn't totally wasted. Matt Lecointe managed to score twice and Curtis Nelson got another goal too.


Player of the month

View attachment 473513

Curtis Nelson. Two goals and he's becoming a worthy successor to Darren Purse in defence.
 
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