Two seasons. Two promotions. I could get used to this! When Scott put that ball in the net it didn’t matter what Torquay and Southend were doing, all that mattered was the eleven in white (or yellow) in front of us. The final whistle and do you laugh, cry, hug friends and family (and complete strangers), or just concentrate on stopping Paul the convict (no bell today) from disgracing himself? I think I tried all of those (though I failed dismally at the latter).
Recent converts to the Red Army might be forgiven for thinking that life as a CTFC fan is always like this. Promotions, Manchester United, Hull City…..ten a penny, life is one long party. Those of us who have been here a little longer know otherwise, however. We know not only the joy that football can bring, but the pain that is always waiting in the wings. For me, knowing that pain makes the joy all the more joyful! And looking around me today at some of the more experienced members of our army, I don’t think I’m alone.
People talk disparagingly sometimes about Johnny come lately’s. For me, Johnny can come as lately as Johnny wants, so long as Johnny comes. And brings his mates. We’ll have some big names at the Broadfield next season- Portsmouth, Coventry City, perhaps one of the Sheffield clubs, Hartlepool United (that one’s for you Jeff!)- and we need to be filling the ground week in and week out. League One will have to be paid for.
But for today, no worries about tomorrow. Though perhaps a little reflection, if you will permit me to be wistful. We’ve good people at our football club- people who have put themselves out to keep it going. The players and the management team will get the glory and rightly so, but I’d like to say a particularly enormous thanks to Alan, Susan and Ian, Silpa, Vic, BruceT, Ewan- and all the rest of the Crawley Town crew. There is an incredible amount of work that I get occasional glimpses of and most of us don’t see, and sometimes the people involved don’t get the credit they deserve. So a large round of applause for them from me. Thank you.
(By the way, Alan just rang and said that if I was writing a blog I should say thank you from him and the club for our wonderful support today and this season, so here you go Al, I’m doing it! Oh, and Redz will be open for a party from half past eight- though us weary travellers won’t get there until about 11!)
Finally, I’d like to thank three people who weren’t with us today. Firstly, John Duly- who started us on the road to the promised land and lost lots of money to make sure it didn’t all go sour. Next, Steve Evans- and whilst that sticks in the throat somewhat it was his team that got promoted today. Yes, we’ve had investment, but you have to use it wisely. He did. All credit to him- even though I hope Rotherham never ever go up (well, not for a while anyway)!
Most importantly though, I’d like to remember someone who we’d have given our eye teeth to have with us today. Because, as always, when the celebrations begun in earnest, we were Bruce Winfield’s Red and White Army. Thanks again Bruce. We won’t forget.
See you all in pre-season! League One Crawley Town. That sounds good, doesn’t it?