The summer study in to Pools' opponents for 2017/18 continues and today we're making the longest trip of the season - all the way to Devon.
Nickname: The Gulls
Who’s in charge?
Kevin Nicholson returned to Plainmoor to cement his reputation as a Torquay United legend when he was appointed Player-Manager in September 2015.
A former Sheffield Wednesday trainee, Nicholson went on to represent Northampton Town, Notts County, Scarborough and Forest Green Rovers before beginning his association with Torquay in 2007.
The trusty left-back played well over 300 games for The Gulls during a seven-year spell with the club before returning to Devon following a season in the colours of Kidderminster Harriers.
Since then, Nicholson has demonstrated that he’s just as adept at picking the team as playing in it and his organisation and determination has helped Torquay preserve their National League status, often against the odds.
How did they get on last season?
When Torquay United were beaten 2-1 by promotion-bound Lincoln City on 14th April, they were left four points short of National League safety with only three games remaining.
Things looked gloomy for the Devon outfit but they rallied in incredible fashion and won their last three games of the season to complete a memorable escape from the drop.
Struggle on and off the field has become part and parcel of following The Gulls in recent seasons sadly, with worries over the future of their stadium as troubling as their battles on the pitch.
However, with highly-rated boss Kevin Nicholson at the helm, there will be hope that a stronger and more consistent season can follow for a club which has the set-up to be a regular in the EFL.
When did we last meet?
Pools and Torquay United last shared a division in 2013/14 with the last meeting coming in March 2014 when goals from Jack Barmby, Luke James and Marlon Harewood wrapped up a 3-0 win.
Earlier in the campaign, Pools had drawn 0-0 at Plainmoor but a season of struggle for their hosts eventually led to them being relegated from League Two.
Where do they play?
Plainmoor has been the home to Torquay United since it was first built back in 1921. It currently boasts a capacity of 6,200.
When do we play them?
We make the long journey to Plainmoor on Saturday 28th October before The Gulls make the return trip to the North-East in our final home game of the season on Saturday 21st April 2018.
Mark Carruthers of NonLeagueDaily.com gives us his views on how Torquay United will perform in the National League this season…
“It’s hard to underplay the amazing job that Kevin Nicholson has done as Torquay United player manager.
“The club looked doomed to relegation in the 2015/16 season, but Nicholson somehow clawed them back from the brink when he replaced Paul Cox in the dugout at Plainmoor.
“And last season, with takeover talk providing a constant distraction, he guided the club to safety once again, finishing three points and four places above the drop zone.
“I have no doubt his work will attract the attention of bigger clubs at some point in the near future.
“The Gulls have lost some key players this summer, with captain Courtney Richards moving to National League rivals Macclesfield Town.
“Nicholson has been hard at work strengthening his squad during pre-season and the additions of Jake Gosling, Josh Gowling and Yan Klukowski will all add the necessary qualities to help the club stave off another relegation battle.
“And although I do think that they will be battling relegation against this season, who would write off Nicholson leading his side to safety once again?”
How Do You Get There?
Postcode: TQ1 3PS
By Road: At the end of the M5 follow the A38 and then turn left onto the A380. When you reach Kingskerwell, take the first exit at the large roundabout onto the A3022 towards Torquay. After one mile turn left towards Babbacombe. After 1 mile turn left into Westhill Road for Warbro Road. Torquay United is signposted on nearing the ground.
By Train: The Plainmoor Ground is over two miles away from the Main Torquay station. Torre Station which is one stop before the main station (but not all trains stop there) is closest to the ground. It is about a 20-25 minute walk. Whereas if you choose to walk from Torquay is around 40 minutes.