Plymouth Argyle fan Conner Pearce is next up previewing the upcoming season for Pilgrims fans.
Sum up last season from your perspective?
It was an excellent bounce back from the narrow relegation the year before (Goal difference relegation). Fresh management with the introduction of Ryan Lowe, formerly of Bury who won promotion from L2 the year prior, seen an influx of Bury players also travel with the gaffer. This definitely gave Ryan the platform he needed to introduce his style of football with committed players in the starting group. A hard-fought league campaign, and, if it has been played through to the end may have seen Plymouth take the title – It was tight at the top.
What has the transfer business been like this summer?
In my opinion, very successful. Challenges such as the wage cap are still coming into play and it’s fair to say Plymouth have a comfortable budget and support from a committed chairman but sensible spending is a must given the financial impact we are all facing post-COVID.
Ryan Hardie has been brought back on loan from Blackpool to go up-top, which is what we need after his fantastic 7 goals in 13 games last season.
George Cooper has just signed a 3-year deal with us (& apparent fair pay-cut) from the Posh after his brilliant loan spell with his last season – Left wing-back with some pace. Paired with Newcastle youngster Kelland Watts, our defence is in great shape. Hopefully, a few more to come through the doors before the week is out.
How has pre-season been for you?
Good – Reports from the Gaffer is positive in terms of the football and thankfully minimal injuries are being carried. A good mix of games from a Rangers XI, Middlesborough, Local team Plymouth Parkway and Forrest Green. Results can only tell so much in pre-season.
Which players are looking like they’ll stand out this season?
As mentioned above, Ryan Hardie shows a lot of promise as a goal-scorer – Hope he continues the form he had at the end of last season. Luke Jephcott is a Plymouth youth player who impressed at his loan to Truro City, brought back to the first team and hasn’t stopped scoring goals. He’ll do well this season. I’m also looking forward to seeing how the Crawley-signing Panutche Camará will perform.
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Any players likely to explode onto the scene from nowhere?
George Cooper shows a lot of promise and I hope shines bright in his first spell here as a signed Plymouth player. Lewis Macleod is another I think that can be excellent at this level after a wealth of games at Rangers and Brentford at the start of his career.
What matches are you looking forward to most this season?
The likes of Hull, Sunderland & Charlton are going to be great in my opinion. Plymouth is a team with previous Championship years and the stadium capacity alike. To see these teams battling in L1 is going to be great, depending on how the recently relegated teams are shaping up. For me personally, Lincoln v Plymouth is a conflict I haven’t had to deal with since living in Lincoln and will be interesting to see.
What can teams expect from you this season?
A lot of hard graft, ‘bodies on the line’ mentality driven in from Ryan and I expect quite a few goals. The style of football will be interesting see played at this level, as Ryan has a track record of succeeding in L2 (Bury, now Plymouth). This next challenge will be new but expected and hopefully will come with all guns blazing.
Where do you think you’ll finish?
An optimistic 11th – If the style of play goes well and goals are scored, perhaps up to 8th but not a promotion contender, at least not for this year.