On Sunday, 8 April I went to Wembley to watch the Checkatrade Trophy final.
The game was between my favourite football team Lincoln City and Shrewsbury Town. It was the very first time that Lincoln had ever been to Wembley Stadium in their 134 year history. Shrewsbury had never won at Wembley despite getting there 3 times before. So whoever won would be making history.
I’m happy to say that we (Lincoln) came, we saw, and we conquered. The trophy is ours! Huzzah!
It wasn’t the best we had played all season, but we did enough. We won 1 – 0 but we could have scored more if we had taken our chances.
It was the first time I’ve ever visited Wembley too and I was impressed. It’s a massive stadium. We travelled down to London on the day and parked in a car park that was literally right next door to the stadium. It was only a five-minute walk from our car to the stadium entrance, which was handy considering it was raining.
I like the fact that Wembley Stadium did have a Changing Places Toilet. But they only have one, and as is typical, it was the opposite side of the stadium to where I was. And I couldn’t even get to it anyway because that’s where the opposition fans were. Luckily I didn’t need to use it but if I did then I would have been stuck.
An astonishing 27,000 Lincoln fans went to Wembley. That is about a quarter of the population of Lincoln! We dwarfed the number of Shrewsbury fans who only had about 11,000 there.
We had pretty good seats which were halfway up the stands. So it wasn’t too high or too low. It was amazing to witness a sea of 27,000 Lincoln fans all cheering and singing. I’ve never seen so many imps in one place before. And there was a great atmosphere with us singing songs all through the match.
I’ve seen Lincoln in major finals before, but that was in Cardiff, not London.
This was over 10 years ago now (time flies). We reached the League 2 play-off final twice in 3 years and I went both times. The matches took place in the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff as the new Wembley was still being built at the time. Unfortunately we lost both times. But they were still good trips out.
Thankfully this time there was no such heartbreak. At least not for us.
The Checkatrade Trophy is just the latest acquisition to Lincoln’s trophy cabinet – we won the National League last year. It is all down to our managers Danny and Nicky Cowley, who are regarded as nothing less than Gods in Lincoln. I’m not exaggerating. Everything they touch seems to turn to gold, or silver as the case may be.
And there could be more silverware to come.
We might be going back to Wembley in about 6 weeks for the play-off final. Lincoln are in a good position at the moment in the play-off positions. So if all goes well we COULD find ourselves at Wembley twice in one season. Just like London buses. You wait ages for one and then 2 come along at once.
The rest of the season is going to be very exciting.