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Torquay United will bring in temporary replacement for suspended Rene Howe

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: February 05, 2013

Torquay United's Rene Howe. Picture by Torbay News Agency

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As manager Martin Ling predicted that they would, Torquay United are working on a possible loan signing later this week to cover for suspended centre-forward Rene Howe.

Howe picked up his tenth booking of the season before scoring his 14th goal of the campaign near the end of last Saturday's 2-1 defeat at Cheltenham Town.

Assistant manager Shaun Taylor, who has taken charge for United's last two games, revealed that he has spoken to Ling since the weekend and that a loan move may happen once the 'window' reopens on Thursday. Howe will miss the Gulls' next two npower League Two home games against Fleetwood Town on Saturday and Rotherham United next Tuesday.

Before he fell ill, Ling had indicated that he was staying out of the January transfer market until injury or suspension to Howe forced him into it.

United do have former Exeter City forward Richard Logan training with them at the moment, and he may play in this afternoon's development game against Plymouth Argyle at Home Park (2pm).

However, Taylor reported that Logan had picked up a calf strain towards the end of last week, and he is not a certain starter today.

All the players who did not start Saturday's match against Cheltenham will be involved, except Danny Stevens and Ian Morris.

Morris is still on the comeback trail from an Achilles tendon injury, but Stevens' absence is an 'insurance' measure.

First-team winger Billy Bodin is away on international duty this week – Wales' Under-21 side play Iceland in a friendly at Llanelli tomorrow night – and Stevens is being held back in case Bodin picks up an injury in west Wales.

Torquay United (from): Rice, C Thompson; Leadbitter, MacDonald, McKenzie, Cruise, Easton, Halpin, N Thompson, Baker, Yeoman, Macklin, Logan, Sullivan, Nardiello, Washburn, May, Beattie.

United's reserves, who are through to the last four after knocking out holders Buckland Athletic, now know their possible path towards the Devon St Luke's Challenge Cup final, after being drawn at home to Tavistock or Plymouth Parkway or Bideford.

Witheridge or Plymouth Argyle will be at home to Tiverton Town or Exeter City in the other semi-final, which must be played by the end of March.

The Gulls have secured a new back-of-shirt sponsorship deal for the rest of this season with car dealership company Snows Group.

The Southampton-based firm has taken over from previous sponsors Marsh Toyota.

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