Coming hot on the heels of the frustrating defeat at Notts County, Wrexham will want to bounce back against another promotion rival.
Torquay hit top spot in the league with a 4-1 win at Aldershot in October and led the table for four months, but a bad start to the season saw them relinquish that position.They started the year by picking up just 10 points out of 33, and it wasn't just the sheer volume of points dropped that cost them: they developed the unfortunate habit of dropping points against the teams round them. Remarkably, the last time they beat a side which is currently in the top half of the table was when they beat Wrexham in early December!
They have corrected matters of late, winning 3 of their last 4 games, and are certainly not out of the title rae yet, as they stand 5 points behind leaders Sutton United, who have a game in hand. Their hopes for a push for the title are based on a potent attack: while no Gull has reached double figures yet (their top scorer is Danny Wright with 9), they're the second-highest scorers in the division, and no-one has scored more on the road. With Wrexham boasting the best home defence in the division, something's got to give!
HEAD TO HEAD
Torquay have enjoyed the upper hand over Wrexham in recent years, We’ve beaten The Gulls just once in our last 7 meetings,
That win was an impressive one, though. Chris Holroyd struck a hat trick and Manny Smith got the other in a 4-0 win in January 2018 which is our biggest win over Torquay. No Wrexham player has hit a hat trick since.
Holroyd’s hat trick is also the only one a Wrexham player has managed against The Gulls, and it puts him level with Barry Horne, Albert Kinsey, Louis Moult and Jim Steel as our top scorer against them.
Our home record is impressive against United. We actually lost our first two games against them at The Racecourse, and three of our first four, but since then they’ve beaten us on our patch just once in 19 attempts.
That most recent defeat came back in February 1988. We were on the back foot from the start, going 2-0 down after just six minutes. Goals from Kevin Russell and Joe Hinnigan (above) saw us mount a rousing second half fightback, but we eventually lost 3-2.
Since then we’ve been unbeaten at The Racecourse against The Gulls in 14 games.
Our most recent win before that 2018 success came in 2015 when Dom Vose, Wes York and James Grey struck to earn a 3-1 win after trailing at the break.
The last time Torquay avoided defeat at The Racecourse was in March 2017, when George Harry’s penalty earned a 1-1 draw.
Of course, our most memorable clashes with Torquay came in 2015, when we defeated them in the semi-final of the FA Trophy to earn a trip to Wembley. Joe Clarke and Louis Moult scored the goals which gave us the advantage after the first leg, but at 2-1, there was all to play for in the return match at Plainmoor.
Kevin Wilkin’s side put on an emphatic display, though, with Kieran Morris grabbing two and Moult scoring the other in a fine 3-0 win.
Jay Harris makes his 250th Wrexham appearance.