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Talkin bout dub

Well we were due to give someone a tonking, weren't we? And we can grind out ugly wins as well. Progress.

Steve Thompson spoke after the Oxford City game about how we wanted to start the game on the front foot, and didn't we just. Both wingers were flying from the off, and Green's goal to open the scoring was superb, a proper striker's finish. Which is nice to see from a player who some think has no end product. As soon as that went in, I had a feeling that my guess of a 3-0 win in the OWTB Prediction League might have been a bit conservative.

Regular readers may recall that I missed Dickenson's thunderbastard against Aldershot because I was at the bar. Last Saturday, it was Andy's turn. And the Chaddy End bar wasn't even that busy. Soz, Andy. It wasn't quite as far out as the Aldershot goal, but it was still a screamer.

We didn't have it all our own way, and there was a goalmouth scramble early in the second half that we did well to keep out. We gradually re-established our dominance, though, and another goalmouth scramble at the Rocky end put us 3-0 up in injury time. That's why you pay big money for strikers like Norwood.

We weren't done, and Dickenson hit a superb free kick into the top left corner to put us 4-0 up with the last kick of the game. After the match, he thanked Norwood for 'letting' him take it, in case you were in any doubt as to who the daddy of the squad is. A cracking result, even if I lost prediction points right at the death.

Special mention goes to the 22 (Twenty Two) Oxford City fans who made the trip north. Our fans applauding them when the attendance was announced, and them lapping it up, was both sweet and really funny.

It's so lovely to hear positivity in the post match interviews. Steve Thompson described Green as having had "one of the best performances I've ever seen from a winger" and Gardner talked about how Sheron "is brilliant for my game" and is one of the most eager and fittest players he's played with. We absolutely have got one of the best squads in the league.

Gardner also said "you want the games to play come thick and fast when you're winning!", so I guess it was nailed on that he'd go off injured with a tweaked hamstring 15 minutes in at Kidderminster. They put us under a lot of pressure and Hudson was kept busy, so it was good that Green had his shooting boots on again. Having apparently knocked out a Kidderminster player who took his attempted cross in the face in the build up, he buried another cracker of a long range shot to put us ahead. Their equaliser was entirely expected, unfortunately. Hobson (their one) could have had a couple of goals before he scored to level it. We were far from our best - as much as I think Shelton and Sheron are good players, they don't really work as an centre mid partnership - but we weren't throwing the towel in.

I texted my brother while listening to the game on Latics Player saying "I wonder if Dibble's related to Off-his-hand Dibble?" "he is! He's his son". Yeah, yeah, showing me age. I thought I'd jinxed it when he made a superb save, but a few minutes later Kitching put a great ball into the box, Dibble spilled Dickenson's shot and of course Reid was there to pounce and put it away. W's in the chat. Except for me. I'd gone for 1-1 with my prediction this time. Lol. Idiot. Nowhere near as good a performance as on Saturday, but as Thompson said after the game, "if people want to come and have a scrap with us, we've proved we can do it".

9 points out of 9, then. And Thompson's confirmed he wants the job permanently: "100% I want it, I want to leave a legacy here". Redfearn's interview in the week did sound like it might be a pitch to stay - Thompson's a great people person, he loves working with him, he loves the club. With the squad we've got, and with us clearly being the biggest club in the division, there'll be some very good candidates applying, and if Thommo and Redfearn keep getting results, the board will have a difficult decision to make. Which is a considerably better problem to have than having to give it to someone we've never heard of cos no fucker wants it.

The contrast in fortunes between us and the club relegated alongside us from the Football League in 2022, Scunthorpe United, could not have been starker this week. Me and Andy happened to be on a flight to Krakow when the tickets for Rochdale away went on sale on Thursday morning, so I was in the bizarre situation of frantically trying to buy tickets online while sat on a plane as soon as we landed at John Paul II Airport. I was right not to wait - we sold out our allocation in 3 hours, and Rochdale, in a feeble attempt to have us not take over their town again, have said they won't be releasing any more tickets. Which definitely won't result in there being 1000 Latics fans in the home end. Massive.

Once I'd bought Rochdale tickets, the next thing I saw online at JP2 was the news about the statement Scunthorpe United had issued. Owner and chairman David Hilton, who it was hoped would be the club's saviour, will no longer be funding the club and is being investigated by the FA, two board members have resigned, the team will be playing its home fixtures 16 miles away at Gainsborough Trinity, and "An outside company will be bought in to work closely with the club's creditors to try and ensure all are paid in a timely and professional manner" (that sounds a lot like going into administration, lads). What a horrible mess.

To compound tragedy as farce, Gainsborough Trinity then put out a statement saying that Scunthorpe's announcement had been made without their knowledge, and that, while an agreement was in place, assistance was needed from the local Safety Advisory Group to allow it to happen. Because a club that was beating Newcastle in the Championship 14 years ago can't just pitch up at a ground at Hyde United's level without the safety certificate being amended. Ground ownership issues, due diligence failures, mad rambling club statements..... It's all painfully familiar. There but for the grace of Frank go us. I wish Scunthorpe fans all the best with whatever the hell comes next for them.

Finally, some more good news. As a club, we're being very well represented at the Football Content Awards, with Aaron Diskin nominated for the individual Equality, Diversity and Inclusion award, Oldham Athletic Disabled Supporters Association up for the group award, and everyone's favourite podcast, the Boundary Park Alert System, shortlisted for Best Non League podcast. Very proud of you all, kids. If you haven't already, please vote.

Safe journey if you're off to Wealdstone today. Hopefully it'll be 4 wins in 4. KTMFF.

Safe joureny

Written by Arlene Finnigan. Photos by Thomas Lee Stacey.

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