BALL ON A ROLL WITH A DOUBLE
DAVID Ball played the lone striker role to perfection as his magnificent double fired Fleetwood Town to a comfortable win at Home Park.
Town boss Graham Alexander has been telling anyone who will listen that his side play an attacking 4-3-3 formation.
Yet there was little doubt that former Peterborough striker Ball was deployed up front on his own against the Pilgrims – a role he clearly enjoys after making it three goals from his first three games.
Undoubtedly the Fleetwood manager got his tactics spot on and, on this evidence, his side will be challenging for promotion this season.
Measured in possession and boasting a fierce work ethic, Fleetwood get the ball down and play and marry flair with discipline.
Argyle, meanwhile, lacked ideas as they slipped into familiar territory towards the foot of the table after becoming one of only three teams yet to pick up a point.
Ball will be first to admit that he owes a huge debt of gratitude to some slack Plymouth defending, which allowed him both the time and space to demonstrate his finishing prowess.
The opener was a crisp right-footed strike from the edge of the box which flew beyond the reach of Jake Cole.
And, after Jeff Hughes broke up field and fed Ball, the striker deftly curled the ball into the top corner from similar range to heap more misery on Argyle. The only regret for the majority of Fleetwood fans was that they missed both goals after their coach got stuck on the motorway and they filtered into Home Park just minutes after Ball conjured the two moments of magic.
And boss Alexander said:“It is not an accident as Bally (David Ball) has worked hard over the summer and come back raring to go.
“He is really putting the work in on and off the pitch and is getting the rewards early. Hopefully it will continue because he is a great lad.
“His talent is undoubted and it is about getting him the right service and giving him the right opportunities to score goals.
“Two wins out of two is a great start for us but we won’t get carried away.“
Ball could have added a third while Reuben Reid missed a chance to haul the hosts back into the match.
“There were harsh words after Southend game and the same was the case,” said Plymouth boss John Sheridan.
“We have not started the season the way I expected us to.The players know my feelings. The goals were soft – too much time and space.
“We just didn’t pick up after that and full credit to Fleetwood who kept catching us on the break.
“We have just got to take it on the chin and take the criticism, which I expect because the two league games we have played have just not been good enough.”
PLYMOUTH: (4-4-2): Cole 6, Berry 5, Blackman 5, Trotman 5, Nelson 5, Alessandra 6, Boco 5 (Gurrieri 65 6), Hourihane 5, Blizzard 5 (Young 65 6), Reid 5 (Harvey 65 5), Morgan 6 Subs not used: McCormick, Richards, Purrington, Lane
FLEETWOOD: (4-5-1): Davies 7, Hogan 7, Jordan 7, Roberts 7, Cresswell 7, Brown 7 (Howell 86 N/A), Crowther 7 (McLaughlin 90 N/A), Hughes 8, Schumacher 8 (Murdoch 86 N/A), Sarcevic 7, Ball 9 Subs not used: Lucas, Pond, Matt, Blair
BOUNCING: Fleetwood’s David Ball celebrates scoring his side’s second with Antoni Sarcevic