Torquay United, by 2040, have no youth system. After being shut down way back in 2015, the Torquay youth academy has had several proposals to restart it but each proposal fell through. In 2016, investors hinted at significant investments that would result in bringing back the youth academy but sadly nothing came of it.
25 years on Torquay remain without a youth academy and this is something that new manager Federico Hurtado is highlighting as a key facet to address moving forward. No youth academy means no youth intake.
Not only would Torquay suffer through having no youngsters progress into the first team, but a successful youth academy potentially pays for itself through player sales. Some of the best youngsters will often be snapped up for a fee from higher division clubs. We need a youth academy.
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Can Torquay afford a youth academy?
As you can see, since falling out of the Football League the club’s finances have struggled to remain in positive figures. In order to request new youth facilities Torquay will need to either sell their best players for a decent amount of money or earn promotion back to the Football League.
Due to the lack of youth intake it is unlikely that Hurtado will be able to sell any of his better players for a high price. As such, it is highly unlikely that we will see a youth setup up reform at Torquay for the foreseeable future.
With no youth intakes, Federico Hurtado must use the transfer market well
With the finances the way they are, it is unlikely that Hurtado will be able to spend any money to bring in new players. Instead, he will have to look towards the loan market and free transfers.
Having joined with plenty of time before the beginning of the season, Hurtado was able to look towards youngsters that had been released from higher division sides. Over his first summer in charge, Hurtado brought in several new staff members and focused in particular on the scouting team.
As there is little to no money available it is crucial that it’s spent correctly. And so in bringing in extra scouts Hurtado has ensured that more players are able to be scouted and therefore there is a wider selection of players to choose from when making a signing.
Immediate promotion back to the Conference must be the aim
Both the Conference North/South and Conference leagues are, by some, seen as very tricky leagues to get out of. Only one team earns automatic promotion to the league above, with another following through the playoffs.
As there are usually one or two teams that are far too strong for the league, Federico Hurtado may have to target the playoffs with Torquay. But with the right additions and a settled tactic anything is possible.
Torquay are predicted to finish 3rd in the Conference South and so it really wouldn’t be out of the question to expect Torquay to earn promotion.
The next post in our VivaTorquay series will be a review of Federico Hurtado’s first season in charge of the Conference South club.
We will be taking a look at how his side have performed over the 2039/40 season and whether the Spanish manager was able to earn immediate promotion back to the Conference.
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