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Hard times at Truro give Lee Hodges great expectations for Torquay job

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: January 09, 2014

By David Thomas

Lee Hodges

Lee Hodges

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Lee Hodges believes that his three years in charge of Truro City have been excellent preparation for helping Chris Hargreaves to try and keep Torquay United in the Football League.

“One hundred per cent, yes – it was good experience, especially the difficult times,” said former Plymouth Argyle and Gulls defender Hodges, 40.

Hodges managed Truro through some eventful seasons, several of them under colourful chairman Kevin Heaney.

“It’s going to be a dog-fight here, week in and week out, and I’ve had to deal with that over the last two or three years,” he added.

Hodges, who was a Torquay team-mate of Hargreaves from 2008 to 2010, finally left Treyew Road at the end of last season, and he has waited eight months for a chance to get back in the professional game.

“I’ve been fortunate that I’ve been able to watch a fair bit of football, including a lot of Argyle games,” he said. “And I really don’t think there’s too much in this league.

“But I know what it’s like to manage in difficult circumstances, and I feel that I’ve got the input to help Chris.

“I’ve already sat down with Chris – he’s given me his ideas, and I’ve told him how I feel.

“He’s the manager at the end of the day, and he’s the one who will make the decisions, but I’m here to help him and help the team and I’m looking forward to doing that.

“Chris has come from Bournemouth, where they play total football, if you like,” Hodges added.

“That’s not going to happen here overnight, and we know we’ve got to fight our way out of this situation first.”

All the indications are that Hodges, who played more than 450 games in a senior career with Tottenham, Barnet, Reading, Plymouth Argyle and Torquay, will concentrate on coaching United’s defence, while Hargreaves will seek to galvanise the midfield and attack.

Their first obstacle is AFC Wimbledon in Kingston this Saturday, and that is followed by a real six-pointer against fellow strugglers Northampton Town – another of Hargreaves’ old clubs and one who tried to beat Torquay to his signature this time – at Plainmoor seven days later.

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