Dare I Say

Five games into our second BSP Season and I’m sure everyone agrees – it’s going well. We have enjoyed good wins against Crawley, Barrow and Ebbsfleet – not forgetting the hard fought 1-0 win over Salisbury!

The Players Go In For A Friendly Hug With Sammy The Stag! (Photo By Dan Westwell)

The Players Go In For A Friendly Hug With Sammy The Stag! (Photo By Dan Westwell)

We have seen plenty of celebrations after goals, including the players wanting a friendly hug with Sammy the Stag! We have even heard the fantastic banter from the training camp: Louis Briscoe’s Take That tribute had me in tears of laughter!

Besides the blip at Luton, Holdsworth’s boys have won every game – putting the Luton game into the category “Irrelevant”. Having played three home games and only two away, it’s time to even it out, a trip to troubled Chester City is next up – this was the first game I looked for when the fixtures came out, as I’m sure a few of you did.

Let me take you back to the 2007/08 season – yes that’s the one; relegation. After a freak goal gifted Rotherham a 1-0 win at Field Mill, our relegation fate lay in the hands of Stockport county. If they could win midweek at Chester City, we would have one last chance. Relegation fate would be down the wire on the last day of the season.

I tuned into a special radio programme on Mansfield 103.2 whilst simultanaeously keeeping the BBC’s score updates on my computer screen. Stockport, chasing a promotion place, threw everything at Chester, but somehow failed to score. With five minutes left our fate was almost sealed. Stockport, if memory serves me right, hit the woodwork with minutes left. If I had been hooked up to a heart-rate monitor it would have exploded. Into extra time the radio went silent for a minute while linking up for the last few minutes of commentary. I could hear the rain crash against my window, then I heard the referee’s whistle and the commentator say something along the lines of,“That’s it, the game is over – Chester somehow draw and stay up, while Mansfield town are relegated.”

I stood up, lost in the moment and eventually ended up outside, where I found my dad, who had also been listening to the game. What happened next was pure madness, I was outside at 10PM, wearing my Stags shirt, crying in the rain.

Tuesday 29th April, 2008, 10pm, crying in the rain – over football!

Tuesday 29th April 2008, Chester City 0-0 Stockport County, 77 Years of Football League history put to an end.

But now we get the chance to take revenge on Chester in the best way possible: by winning!

Had Chester lost and Mansfield survived on the last day, things could now be a lot different – but in a bad way. A certain Mr. Haslam could still be owner of our club. We could have a rubbish team, made up of drop-out last minute signings, we could be scraping the barrel in League Two – taking beating after beating, week in week out. We may never have got David Holdsworth. For the last point alone, I would like to thank Chester City. We may have been down, which hurt at the time, the memory of which still does (I bet you got a cold shiver reading my previous paragraph).

We now have a super squad that excels in every area. We have a gifted manager who one day is destined for bigger things and this season we should be enjoying success. Hopefully we can take our home form, unstoppable goals and fantastic defending and tactical play, and unleash it on Chester! 

Rob Duffy Celebrates Opening The Scoring Vs Ebbsfleet (Photo By Dan Westwell)

Rob Duffy Celebrates Opening The Scoring Vs Ebbsfleet (Photo By Dan Westwell)

Rob Duffy has scored 2 goals in 2 games. Lets hope he keeps it up. Jake Speight has done the same coming from the bench! Daryl Clare is on the goal trail to! And last but not least Kyle Perry, who hasn’t scored since Salisbury (our last away outing) but possess such power upfront- Holdsworth has one huge headache!

Haunted by the memories of April 29th, I cant wait to get Chester out of the way and return home with three points. If we can do this, it will help us to keep up the pace in the league and maybe regain top spot, should the leaders slip up.


Thanks as ever, for reading, and thank you for all the comments- please keep the coming!

See you at Chester, for a game that for me at least is worth a lot more than three points!



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