Thursday, 17 April 2014

It's a special evening when you can spend it with your heroes

Last night some of you may know that it was the players' shirt sponsors evening at Dean Court and Cherry Chimes along with many other player sponsors had the opportunity to meet and mingle with the AFCB squad and to just enjoy the moment of being among our heroes. Eddie Howe was his beaming self and full of admiration not only for his team and staff, but also for all the supporters who have stuck with the club through the good and bad times this season.
Cherry Chimes meets Mohamed Coulibaly and poses for a photo.

As one of the sponsors of Mohamed Coulibaly it was not long before my name was called out for a photo call with Mo and two of my invited guests, Damien Hill who has written a few times as a guest blogger, and fellow season ticket holder in the Family stand, and Michael Dunne, who also sits next to my family as a season ticket holder, and is the author of the famous All Departments podcasts and View From the Stands. We hurried out on to the veranda where club photographer Steve Cook snapped the moment for the archives, but thanks to Mike we also took a few unofficial photos which you can see here. 
And, yes I did get Mo to sign the shirt - star struck!
The night passed very quickly and we had a fabulous time seated at a table with Mo and Eunan O'Kane. I'll admit we were hopeless at the quiz although Matt Ritchie knows just about everything when it comes to who's who and we were firmly put in our place by Mike Botto's table! 

We found out that Coulibaly is still working on his fitness and feels that he is still some way behind where he would like to be but still hopes that he can make a squad appearance again before the end of the season - I jested that scoring the winner at Wembley in the play-off final would be okay with me. He seemed very excited about the team's prospects as did Tommy Elphick and many of the others and it was good to hear them feeling confident that they will go into the next few games with the possibility of really trying to make some dreams come true.

Sponsors and guests are seated ready to meet their AFCB idols.
I can't tell you too many secrets but It was great to see that the players were happy to be open and in the presence of a group of fans who were loving every moment of the evening.

Eddie Howe got up to answer a few questions from Mike Botto, one being which game did he feel was the best performance this season? Eddie pointed to two games in particular that probably turned the season around. He picked the Reading away game as the one that had the biggest impact for the squad and he also felt that the team played extremely well in the Brighton away match.I remember that day - boy did we get wet! "The support has been crucial," he said. "In the home games the crowd have ignited the players and in the away games the support has reached another level this season."
Eddie and Tommy Elphick are questioned by Mike Botto.
A special mention  for Mr Botto - good luck in your
walk Mike from Blandford Forum before the Sheffield Wednesday match on Friday.
Eddie also praised the unity of the club and acknowledged that we have a special club where players and supporters can meet on nights like this. Eddie said he had thoroughly enjoyed the night and I can say from the fans point of view that opinion was well and truly shared.
Some of the players catch a bit of the evening sun before the meal.
Four men who are certainly massive heroes to AFCB fans -
a relaxed Eddie Howe, Jason Tindall, Stephen Purches and Steve Fletcher. 
This afternoon I'll be chatting with Owls Alive as we ramp things up for the visit of Sheffield Wednesday - make sure you come back and Cherry Chimes later - it's a good one. UTCIAD!

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