Sunday, 2 April 2017
Imps roar to victory.
Not the team, they were quite lack lustre if I’m honest. What brought about Lincoln City’s win and return to the top of the league was a more or less constant wall of noise from the supporters that is making Sincil Bank such a fearsome place for visiting sides to come and prosper although Bromley certainly made a spirited fist of it. As far as I’m concerned some of my applause at the end was for Bromley too. For a team with nothing to play for they gave City as thorough an examination as any.
Before the game though, a unique opportunity for us supporters to salute a true hero. George “Johnny” Johnson, the last surviving British member of the Dambusters, a cause we have taken as our talismen, was guest of honour at the match enabling fans to deliver to Mr Johnson an ovation so long, warm and loud that he will live the rest of his days knowing, whatever the indifference of the nation to the exploits of these young men, whatever the posturing of politicians, that we fans recognise and appreciate the sacrifices these men made in putting themselves, night after night, through the most terrifying ordeal, not to perpetuate conflict but to try to bring it to an end.
It’s doubtful if any of the crowd yesterday had any personal recollection of the Second World War but because of Johnny and his young comrades however difficult and humdrum our lives may be we have, in the main, lived them free from the spectre of war and our recognition of that was shown yesterday.
I think also, the fact that City showed Mr Johnson such respect and gave him VIP status, that’s the reason we have all fallen back in love with our football club. The Dambusters is a cause taken up by the fans rather than the football club officially but the fact that the club so readily entered into the fans regard for them encapsulates what we are about now. Our own magnificent men, the Cowleys have reconnected the club with the supporters and now the club have firmly placed itself at the heart of the community.
Churchill, Wellington, Nelson, heroes all but we salute George Johnson, an ordinary man from ordinary Lincolnshire who did the extraordinary many years ago that we might be free and live in peace and friendship with our neighbours. Our hero, I’m sure you’ll agree.
Is there time for football? Yes, you bet. Danny Cowley said in an almost soul-searching write up in the programme that we must live for the moment as we, all of us strive now for the ultimate success, promotion but the match was the epitome of attrition as the Imps came up against an almost immovable object in Bromley. Park the bus is a rather overused metaphor these days but Bromley set about their task with determination. We salute that too although parked buses don’t hit the post as our opponents did. A missed penalty from the usually reliable Alan Power who had another excellent game otherwise, didn’t help to relieve the frustration.
I actually said to my co-sufferer Stewart “Will somebody please have a shot?” At that point Billy Knott did, releasing pandemonium. I’d quite like to be outside Sincil Bank to hear the sort of noise we generate at the moment and I’d imagine the decibel level reached record volume as City clawed another three points to keep them at the top.
We only have to wait till Monday for the next instalment. I wonder how I ever get to sleep at the moment.