Where were you when Dobbin scored?

Cod Almighty | Article

by Various

17 October 2013

An embarrassingly long time ago, we invited Cod Almighty readers to share with us their recollections of 24 October 1992. This is what you told us. 

Watching lightning strike twice

I was there when Town won away at Newcastle early in 1984 - approaching the turnstile on that day a mounted policeman laughed and said "We've got Kevin Keegan, who have you got?". I didn't speak, just smiled and kept my thougts to myself ... "Kevin Drinkell obviously, you prat". Drinkell duly scored for Town and we hung on for a 1-0 win. Nigel Batch made a stunning point blank save from a Glen Roeder header to prompt the headline "Super save denies United!" in the Newcastle football paper.

I'd mentioned that experience to more than one Newcastle fan before the Dobbin game, but it was still more in hope than expectation that I turned up with my 11-year-old son for the match. Dave Beasant had just signed for us on loan and was making his debut for Town after making a series of errors in previous games worthy of Tommy Forecast on a bad day. During the pre-match warm-up at the Town fans' end, Arthur Mann volleyed shots at him so the ball bounced in front of Beasant. He spilled every one. The ball fell from his grasp, bounced from his chest and struck his arm.

That was the last time he dropped a ball before the final whistle. When the game started he caught everything, dominated the penalty area and, I swear, caught corners with one hand, occasionally keeping us entertained by spinning the ball on his forefinger, then balancing it on the back of his neck and checking his gloves for mud before throwing an inch perfect pass 50 yards to a Town player. OK, OK ... it was a long time ago.

We matched Newcastle throughout the game and deserved the win that Dobbin's fantastic goal earned us. The celebrations were that frantic, high-pitched scream that only happens with an away win at a big club - the goal and the occasion destroyed any inhibitions in the Town corner.

We were kept in the ground after the final whistle. Newcastle fans in the ground were generous with their applause as Town left the field. As we finally left the ground we were treated to three or four young guys in a flat by the ground mooning at us, accompanied by a young woman who responded positively to the Town fans rendition of "Get your tits out for the lads" - about as rare an event as a Jim Dobbin goal.

Dave Wagstaff

Slow motion

This was a match I very nearly didn't go to.

I had a ticket and was booked on Bernard's bus but after a humdinger of a Friday night in Meggies I got up late and nearly didn't bother, as we were bound to get humped given the form the Geordies were in. Needless to say I'm pleased I did make the effort.

I remember we were under the cosh and Mark Lever having a stormer of
a game. As for the goal, like everyone else I didn't think he would have a pop
so after the silence as it went in - it did really seem like it went in in slow
motion - I remember the bunch of us huddled in that corner going absolutely
ballistic.

Great days. That is what being a Town fan is all about.

Tim Mosey 

30 seconds of pandemonium

I can remember some bits of that day very clearly, but others not so well. I was home from University for the weekend - partly to get my washing done, but mainly to head up to Newcastle for the match. It was definitely a case of hope rather than expectation. I seem to remember going to St James's Park a season or two before when we lost, but was keen to go again.

I think I borrowed my Dad's car and drove three or four other Town fans from the Louth area up. It seems hugely surprising now that my Dad would let his 20-year-old student son borrow his brand new Mondeo to take four people he didn't know all the way to Newcastle. But am I pleased he did.

One of our group had a friend/relative/work colleague who was a Newcastle fan so he met us before the match and took us into a pub near the ground (The Strawberry?) which was rammed with locals. We got announced to the whole bar as Grimsby fans on the way in, but everyone was decent; honest football fans who just seemed pleased to see us and were more than happy to predict how many they would score. Oh the irony.

I don't remember too much about the match other than we seemed to play quite well and as we headed into the last five minutes, the group I was with were actually disappointed that we were only going to get a draw.

When Dobbin's shot flew in, the away end went ballistic. I read that someone thought there weren't many more than 100 Town fans there but that couldn't be further from the truth. The away end was jam packed (700-800?) and by the time we'd finished celebrating the goal, I'd somehow gone from near the back of the terrace to down near the front. 30 seconds of pandemonium and delirious celebration which can only be matched by Burnley away and Wayne Burnett at Wembley (I didn't make it to Liverpool!)

The drive home was surreal. 606 was presented that night by Duncan McKenzie (ex-footballer, Grimsby fan and I think son of the legendary Betty McKenzie) so all he wanted to do was talk about the result. It seemed that everyone who phoned wanted to congratulate Grimsby, no matter who they supported.

As you can imagine, I walked a little bit taller that week when back in Coventry.

So was it my best memory watching Town? Not quite, but very, very close.

Alan Richardson

"Euphoria prevailed"

I'm not sure why I didn't go to the game in the first place but as I was (and still am) in the Royal Navy, the fact that I was doing a five hundred mile round trip from Pompey most weekends probably had something to do with it.

I had just been round to see my girlfriend at the time and was catching the last 10 minutes of the game on the radio as I was driving home. Just as I was pulling up to my house, the magic moment happened. The shout of 'FUCKING GET IN THERE' left me with such volume and force that my foot lifted off the clutch, causing the car to lurch forward, mount the kerb and
hit a lamp post.

Despite this, the euphoria prevailed. I rushed out of the car, leaving the door open and the engine running and ran into the house whilst screaming like a banshee. My Mum narrowly avoided a massive coronary as she thought some psycho had just broken into the house and she brought me back down from cloud nine with one of the best bollockings I've ever had.

'Migs' Magill

Stunned but jubilant

Back in the day, I had a company car and free petrol to boot, so Town away games were easy to do. It seemed we were visiting big clubs week in, week out. Personally I’d been married a month and was looking forward to a day out with friends. I was looking forward to seeing St James's Park packed to the rafters.

Martin's ticketEarly doors, we seemed to be under pressure but Town seemed to get better the longer the game went. Top class keeper who seemed to act as a sweeper
as well. Dave Beasant was a top class keeper who seemed to act as a sweeper
as well. Futch looked at ease and Mark Lever was winning plenty of headers.

With a few minutes to go, I was thinking "Hang on in there, Town". From the moment it left his boot, Dobbin's shot seemed to be heading for the corner. I had a similar feeling when Jevons scored at Anfield. In the packed open enclosure, we were jumping for joy, hugging friends in disbelief. It’s not the same these days when you are sitting.

At the final whistle, we were stunned but jubilant; really happy to be there when we had beaten a big club. The home reaction was pretty good. There was applause from many of their supporters for the Town team. We were waiting to be let out, so we were squashed by the gates, singing.

Kevin Keegan, on Sports Report on the radio when coming back, told the reporter that it as was Grimsby’s day and that they should be interviewing Buckley instead. I've always held Keegan in high esteem since.

Martin Robinson

The greatest day of my following Town career

My 14 year old self was at the front of that corner of St James's Park that day courtesy of one of Bernard Morley's coaches wearing that horrible sort of Salmon Ciba-Geigy sponsored shirt over a hoodie. Still the greatest day of my following Town career.

Jim Silvester

Quite a night at the Top Town social

As a teenage season ticket holder, if Town were away me and some friends would gather at my house and play 'the scores', a game for money that would involve predicting teams and players who would score that afternoon. Using Ceefax as our guide, names and teams would be crossed off as the goals went in, with the person with the most goals winning about £7, which got youbpissed at the top town social club later that night.

Alongside this, match commentary would emanate from my battered ghetto blaster and a game of pool would be going on also.

That day I had one of my first accumulators on and a side bet with Michael Martin that town would win given a two goal start. With minutes remaining I knew Mike's cash was mine and then, and then.... The roar that greeted the goal was instantly silenced by Trigger who had leapt in the air after Dobbin's strike and landed on the stereo, snapping the aerial and stopping the commentary. We battered him, I ran around trying to find an old Walkman and we managed to listen through some tinny headphones.

The perfect day and my accumulator came in as well, at the princely sum of £9.32. It was quite a night at the Top Town Social.

Paul Thundercliffe

Decent

I was there. Decent effort by Dobbin.

My brother-in-law is a Geordie and the fact that we stopped them equalling, I think, Sunderland's number of wins since the start of a season pissed his dad off no end. Like a true inhabitant of the world's biggest village in the years that followed he 'gloried' in Newcastle's big town status and the fact that they could fill a stadium with 51,000 people. Well he wouldn't have it that I'd also been at St James's watching Town with only 13,000 people in!!

Jeremy Turner

Why the Mariners and decorating don't mix

I was 8 years old and I’d taken a break from playing Football Manager on the Commodore 64 to ‘assist’ my dad in decorating the hall. I recall nothing of the game itself other than the unmistakable huge gasp of disbelief of the commentator (the usually reserved John Tondeur I presume?) as John Dobbin rifled the ball into the net. My dad leapt, I screamed and my Mum could only look on in horror as her newly painted wall was splattered with wallpaper paste.

I was lucky enough to attend both the Wembley games and Anfield and obviously there’s no substitute for actually being there but it’ll forever be one of those goals that brings out the goosebumps. It’s in a large part thanks to this goal that I relentlessly nagged my Dad to take me with him to Blundell Park that season and thus began my 20-year and ongoing infatuation with Town. So, yeah, thanks for that Jim.

Joe Turner

Outside Radio Rentals

The internet age has ushered away many familiar sights from the English football landscape. The man in a packed terrace with a 'transistor radio' relaying last-day relegation updates. Watching a game on Ceefax. And groups of non-attending supporters, at quarter to five, gathered awkwardly around TV shop windows.

The day Jim Dobbin scored, I was in Grimsby – for the first time in a month. At the end of September I'd left to start university. As a reward for surviving four weeks in Birmingham, I was treating myself to a weekend back home.

Saturday afternoon I was on my own, mooching around the precinct. Realising it was nearly full time, I made for the nearest TV shop. Half a dozen other Town fans were watching the videoprinter. We looked at each other and grinned, acknowledging the daftness of the situation – and perhaps also, at that particular moment in time, of hoping for a result at Newcastle.

Those who were there say the small number of Town fans present (less than a hundred, I think) greeted Dobbin's rocket by going ballistic. Not so at the Freshney Place branch of Radio Rentals. We happy few Mariners greeted the result with the most restrained of little cheers – and a little chuckle at the unlikeliness of it. Still, when I packed up my books of Seamus Heaney poems and freshly washed tie-dye tops to take back to Birmingham the next day, I took a big old smile back with them as well.

Pete Green

Contact us to share your memories of the day we beat Newcastle, and we'll add them to this page.