Plymouth Argyle ended their schedule of pre-season games with an emphatic 3-0 win against Torquay United at Plainmoor.
The National League hosts were more than a match for Ryan Lowe’s Pilgrims for much of the first half.
However, Argyle took control of the contest with two goals shortly before the interval from striker Niall Ennis and midfielder Panutche Camara.
The Pilgrims were then clearly the stronger side in the second half but had to wait until the 82nd minute before adding to their lead through Ryan Hardie, one of 10 substitutes used by Ryan Lowe.
All attention now turns to the League One season opener at Rotherham United next Saturday, and Argyle can do so buoyed by a confident display against the Gulls.
Torquay had the first scoring chance when defender Joe Lewis headed wide after a driven corner by Armani Little.
Callum Burton was Argyle’s goalkeeper, after missing the previous three pre-season games due to thigh and finger injuries.
There was also a first Pilgrims’ appearance for midfielder Ryan Broom after completing his season-long loan move from Peterborough United on Thursday.
Broom started in central midfield alongside Camara, with Danny Mayor among the 11 substitutes named by Ryan Lowe.
Argyle’s first attempt on goal came from Broom in the 14th minute after good play from Ennis.
The striker showed excellent control of the ball after an overhit cross into the Torquay penalty area and rolled it back to Broom.
The Pilgrims’ new recruit cuit inside and then unleashed a fierce right-foot shot which flew narrowly over the crossbar.
Argyle striker Luke Jephcott then had a shot from inside the Gulls’ penalty area deflected behind for a corner by Lewis.
Broom looked sharp as he played on the left of Argyle’s central midfield duo, alongside Camara, with his control and distribution of the ball standing out.
Torquay had a good amount of possession in the first half but without any end product.
And Argyle came up with two clinical finishes shortly before the break as they took a firm grip on the game.
First, Ennis made a superb surging run through the centre of the pitch in the 42nd minute, leaving opposing players in his wake, before scoring with a low angled drive past ‘keeper Mark Halstead.
Then, in the second of two minutes added on time, Halstead parried away a shot from Jephcott and Camara slotted home, with the hosts looking for an offside flag which did not come.
Argyle’s former Torquay loan signing Ryan Law had an early second half shot blocked by the well-placed Lewis as the left wing-back responded to encouragement from the Green Army to aim for goal.
Argyle defender Macaulay Gillesphey then forced a good low save out of Halstead in the 57th minute.
Gillesphey curled a 25-yard free-kick around Torquay’s defensive wall but Halstead swooped to his right to push it wide.
Plymouth Live's unbeatable Argyle coverage
Each week, Chris will give subscribers an exclusive glimpse of what life is like as one of Britain's most-travelled football reporters in our well-read 'Inside Home Park' newsletter. It's an absolute must-read, and you can sign up for that here.
Plymouth Live has launched a WhatsApp service dedicated to keeping you up to date with the latest Argyle news. Click here to join and follow the instructions on your phone.
Your number will not be shared with anyone else in the group. If you want more information on signing up, or if this link does not work click here.
Torquay could not be faulted for the effort but apart from one long range shot from Jake Andrews, which was safely caught by substitute ‘keeper Mike Cooper, they posed little attacking threat.
Cooper was among a series of changes made by Lowe during the second period but the Pilgrims remained in the ascendancy.
The Argyle ‘keeper did make one smart save from a low shot by ‘Trialist B’, who also sent a header over the bar from close range after a corner taken by Armani Little.
Argyle wrapped up their convincing victory with a third goal in the 82nd minute, at the Babbacome End of Plainmoor which was packed with the Green Army..
Finley Craske, one of the club's scholars, had replaced Joe Edwards at right wing-back and he found fellow substitute Hardie, who turned and shot low into the net.
Argyle: Callum Burton (Mike Cooper 59 mins); Ollie Tomlinson (Ethan Mitchell 82 mins), Dan Scarr (James Wilson 69 mins), Macaulay Gillesphey (Brandon Pursall 82 mins); Adam Randell; Joe Edwards (Finley Craske 75 mins), Panutche Camara (Jordan Houghton 67 mins), Ryan Broom (Danny Mayor 59 mins), Ryan Law (Brendan Galloway 67 mins); Niall Ennis (Ryan Hardie 57 mins), Luke Jephcott (Rhys Shirley 80 mins). Substitutes: Conor Grant.
Torquay: Mark Halstead; Ben Wynter, Joe Lewis (Alex Moyse 76 mins), Ali Omar (Jake Andrews 39 mins), Dean Moxey; Trialist A (Trialist C h/t), Armani Little (Scott Piper 85 mins), Keelan O'Connell; Connor Lemonheigh-Evans, Klaidi Lolos (Trialist B h/t), Danny Wright (Olaf Koszela 76 mins).
Referee: Brett Huxtable
What were your thoughts on Argyle's performance against Torquay? Who impressed you? Please post your replies in the comments section below:
Source : https://www.plymouthherald.co.uk/sport/football/plymouth-argyle-end-pre-season-57260601136