Deranged Ferret: Lincoln City 'fans' need to get real or get lost
The Imps' best start for what seems like forever was curtailed on Saturday by a dour and yet resilient side from Salisbury, which I'm informed is another cathedral city from somewhere down south. However picturesque their city is, their football had all the appeal of a tramps damp sock but they came along and did a job.
I must confess I only saw the first 45 minutes, in the second half I threw a tin of Dulux on the floor and watched it slowly lose all its moisture. Sometime around the hour mark a small fly landed in it and struggled to get out, which proved extremely exciting.
Mind you, one thing my spell of watching paint dry lacked was a section of morons booing. I hate to attack the Imps fans again, but at what point does sitting fourth in the Conference become a cause to boo?
The fact we lost doesn't suddenly mean we've had a poor start to the campaign. It may come as a shock to those fans that chose to heckle the team, but every side loses games and occasionally they lose games they should win. I'm going to boldly predict we may even lose some more matches before the end of the season, so if you are coming to Sincil Bank expecting us to win every game then you're going to be very unhappy.
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Actually who knows, you may be happy because the only reason I can see for turning on the team so quickly is you must get some perverse sense of enjoyment out of it.
In order to try and maintain the positivity around the club, may I suggest you don't bother coming to the games if you're not going to support the team?
I understand you booing as some lacklustre child goalkeeper from Aston Villa let in six against Rotherham, or when some gurning cockney clown takes us on an 11-game losing spree and out of the league, but I cannot condone barracking a promising young side like the one we currently have.
The board may not agree but I'd rather have 1,500 fans pulling in the same direction than 1,900 with a portion of idiots heckling Nat Brown for spreading the ball back to the keeper. Either support the team or get your kicks texting in moronic comments to Radio Lincolnshire from the comfort of your armchair.
I suspect many Imps fans are too young to remember the sides that played under Allan Clarke, Sam Ellis and Steve Wicks, but it hasn't always been play-offs and wonder for the boys in red and white.
Before Keith Alexander and Simmo rejuvenated the city we were actually a really bad football team and had been ever since Colin Murphy left as the boss. Mind you I see Colin is involved in the club again, and he's even stopped wearing the Hull City jacket that appeared to be welded onto him through the last 10 years. Colin (to those who are too young to remember) was the man who gave birth to the Deranged Ferret nickname, a man who always had 50 words where three or four would suffice. It's great to know he's still got a presence at the Bank, and if rumours of him travelling on the team coach are right then fair play to the club. Mr Murphy is without doubt one of the all-time great Imps managers.
So putting the bad day at the office behind us, the coming weeks offer the potential for some cracking football matches, none more so that Saturday's trip to Barnet.
Ever since 1987 they've been a side we love to hate for many reasons, the main one being Barry Fry. A City and Barnet game always throws up plenty of goals and incident and I suspect Saturday will be no different. Back in 1987 a 2-1 win at the Bank saw mass brawls, red cards and Mr Fry being escorted away by some of Lincolnshire Police's finest officers.
I hear Barnet have a new ground which would suggest the place they used to play football was a ground in the first place. My impression of Underhill was that it would probably have been best left Under a Hill (groan, cue boos).
It will be for the two teams to meet in a top of the table clash though. Usually whenever the Bees buzz into town (I know, it's getting worse isn't it?) both sides are scrapping for their lives in the lower reaches of whatever league Barnet are polluting at the time. Who can forget our 2-1 win in 2001 that kept us up and sent them down? I'm personally still mentally scarred from them putting six past Mike Pollitt in the early 90s, although I suspect more recently they'll recall a 5-0 win for us on the park they called home, when even Leon Mettam scored. I'd settle for a point if I'm honest, although I bet somewhere there is somebody booing the computer screen as they read that. Fickle lot.
I've read a little criticism about DF writing for the Echo recently and I'd like to answer that if I may. The sports editor JP has given me a free reign to write what I want, although I'm told no colourful language. I had an option of writing for a few websites, but these days everyone seems to have an agenda or motive.
The only guys on the web I would have written for would be the lads at Lincoln City Banter, but they're more a message board than a site for articles. I would like to thank Paul Dawson though for the incredible work he puts in fundraising for the club.
If all Imps fans were like Paul I doubt we'd hear much booing in the ground. Anyway the Echo has always had a policy of delivering Imps news and views from a neutral position, so where better than here for me to deliver my views?
There is a lot of things chewing over at the moment, but one that is rumbling on is ticket prices – are they too expensive? Well it turns out we're cheaper than the Codheads (oops, something derogatory and controversial) which is a bonus, but apparently they let kids in for free at Blunder Park.
Maybe it is time for the board to look at under-10's and realise they don't have that much disposable income. Would free kids tickets be such a bad thing? With more money to spend perhaps they'd splash out on a copy of the excellent match day programme, or food from the kiosk.
It has to be said though that £17 is a lot of money to pay to watch 11 plumbers and taxi drivers kick lumps out of our boys and emerge with a 1-0 win. Mind you it's not like price reduction days have ever really swelled the attendance.
In fact the only thing that has swelled it in the past was the threat (and eventual) relegation from the football league. Maybe the average Imps fan is only happy when we're losing.
Perhaps it is time to bring back Steve Tilson, Drewe Broughton and that kid from Villa with marshmallow hands? Booooooo.