Torquay boss Martin Ling takes positives from FA Cup loss

Bobby Olejnik
Gulls keeper Bobby Olejnik has won many plaudits this season at Plainmoor

Torquay United boss Martin Ling says his team can take a lot of positives from Saturday's 3-2 FA Cup second round defeat at Sheffield United.

The Gulls led for two thirds of the match but two goals in two minutes, including an own goal from Mark Ellis, swung it for the Blades.

"It's a display that had an awful lot of positives," Ling told BBC Devon.

"Obviously there were a couple of negatives and a mad minute and two mistakes cost us a run in the FA Cup."

On top of Ellis's own goal, goalkeeper Bobby Olejnik's mistake led to Ched Evans scoring the Blades' cllnching third with 12 minutes go, before Danny Stevens got a consolation for the Gulls deep into stoppage time.

"I thought we matched them all the way," said Ling.

"It was a defensive display, but I also thought we passed the ball with a purpose and created chances for ourselves.

"But when you make two cheap mistakes, like Mark has and Bobby has, that's what's going to cost you.

"If Mark hadn't scored that goal, they were struggling and were starting to get a little bit impatient.

"It's a shame really because they've both been outstanding in the recent run. Bobby's been outstanding all season and Mark's been outstanding since he's been in."

Ellis's return to the Gulls' starting line-up coincided with the start of Torquay's run of six matches without defeat, which was ended at Bramall Lane.

But Ling added: "If we can continue to play like we did, we'll win more than we lose in League Two, that's for sure."

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