Oxford City v Dulwich Hamlet (National South, Saturday 30 November, 3pm)

Discussion in 'Dulwich Hamlet FC' started by Pink Panther, Nov 28, 2019.

  1. Christian Burt

    Christian Burt Well-Known Member

    To be fair, a colleague of mine at work's son was "called up" for St Lucia U21s - and he plays at least four divisions below Dulwich.
    Which isn't to say Monlouis isn't a good player, and it's still an honour etc.
    Cyclodunc likes this.
  2. Christian Burt

    Christian Burt Well-Known Member

    A Phoenix team entirely supported by vocally rum-infused track-pant wearing anti-heroes.....sounds ace to me*
    *with Steve McKimm in the dugout
    Lucy Fur and Moroccan Sunset like this.
  3. EDC

    EDC A Slightly Less Invisible Cyber Fan These Days

    ^ Don't forget piss stained.
  4. Dulwich Mishi

    Dulwich Mishi Old Skool Terrace Dinosaur-embracing the new-veau!

    Where have I stated ambition to be a Football League side? As usual you talk bollocks and twist things in your finest Urban style.
  5. B.I.G

    B.I.G Well-Known Member

    “You will inevitably progress upwards”. Does your ambition to win every game stop at National League level then?
    Jamie Wyatt, editor and Pink Panther like this.
  6. editor

    editor hiraethified

    The thing I like best about non league football is that it's not all about winning at all costs, so you don't get fans coming with the expectation of a win and booing their own team if they fail to provide one.

    And the problem is when a team starts to do well it suddenly attracts a load of these 'win at all costs' types, and the whole atmosphere at games changes for the worst.

    Instead of it being a fun day out supporting your team - no matter what - a chunk of the new crowd will set about verbally attacking the opposition, gloating when their team wins and making the whole event about community and cohesion and more about division and laaaads. T'is an ugly sight, alright.

    I'm not saying it's like that at Hamlet but there's certainly been a noticeable shift in the atmosphere since we went up a league and the crowds ballooned.
  7. Son of Roy

    Son of Roy Really?

    Mish I think we agree.
    'Only a Sith deals in absolutes'.
    baleboy_93 likes this.
  8. tonysingh

    tonysingh Random Clever and Witty Strapline

    Channeling the spirit of our favorite nine toed curmudgeon, but Mishi ain't gonna get that reference.
    Dulwich Mishi and EDC like this.
  9. scousedom

    scousedom Well-Known Member

    Not disagreeing with this from the atmosphere point of view, but I don’t subscribe to the implied causality between promotion and crowd increases. I think the crowd numbers are just maintaining a steady upward trajectory that would have happened without promotion. In fact I bet if you asked the additional 300-500 we’re getting since returning home what league we are in they wouldn’t be able to tell you. Which shows they aren’t there for the level. They’re just there because of the success the Club has had in increasing awareness of itself.
    Monkeygrinder's Organ likes this.
  10. editor

    editor hiraethified

    I'm not entirely convinced that the home crowds would have kept growing quite so much without the publicity of promotion, the ensuing raised profile of the club and, of course, the greater numbers of visiting fans. Either way, it's hardly controversial to say that the atmosphere has dipped a fair bit, and - to be honest - I worry about what will happen when the new, 80% cover-free ground is built...
    PartisanDulwich likes this.
  11. Christian Burt

    Christian Burt Well-Known Member

    There are numerous reasons for the atmosphere and societal changes is one of them.
    Back when I first went properly to Dulwich, it was broken into the small band of fans that you sung. Home and Away, and there were, dare I say, natural leaders of the Rabble. Pretty much no choice about it and it wasn't even always enjoyable, but more a case of drink until you can't drink no more and sing like crazy. It was fanatical, borderline hooligan (not in an up for fighting way, but we (me!) did indeed behave badly on several occasions) and, as often with these things, at peak moments, it was beyond rewarding and the best time of our lives.
    In fact, we were all slightly deranged to be honest.

    Around 2011-12, there was a renaissance of new supporters who shared that fanatical, almost unhinged, desire to support Dulwich. It was very much equal to those early 90s days, and for me personally arguably even better, as the singing contingent grew, with plenty of new songs and the sort of conversations on the terraces that I feel kick-started many weird and wonderful ideas that went beyond just football.

    Let's face it - a lot of us Rabble are old now - but I believe Carlisle (and the play-off final) showed that when everyone comes out the woodwork, the willed fanaticism returns and you basically get the atmosphere of old.

    It just isn't going to happen that often if we are being honest.
  12. Pink Panther

    Pink Panther Well-Known Member

    I also remember those 12 seasons of being stuck in Division 1 South of the Isthmian League. There were a couple of promotion near misses under Martin Eede in the second and third of those seasons, then two play-off final defeats in the second and third seasons of the Gavin Rose era before we went up as champions. There was one other entertaining season under Wayne Burnett when the football was great to watch but we fell away badly at the end to miss out on a top five place. The other six seasons (half of the period in question) remain largely forgotten in terms of the football we saw, typically played out in front of 250 or so spectators at home and often a lot fewer away. I don't want to go back to that and frankly if we did, with those sort of attendances, the club probably wouldn't generate enough revenue to keep going even with a small playing budget.

    The other thing to remember is that promotion to higher leagues is a relatively recent thing in non-league football. I know 40 years isn't that recent to some of you, but when I first began following the Hamlet there was no promotion from the Isthmian league, which was just a self contained league with three divisions. Enfield were champions 6 times within a decade. Other clubs won back-to-back championships or hat-tricks of championships. Their only option was to apply for election to the Football league (I'm not sure how many Isthmian clubs did this, but certainly none was elected) or to apply to join the Southern League, which had always been semi-professional during the Amateur era and was a stronger competition. Wimbledon, Wealdstone and Maidstone all followed this route.

    The two big changes were the formation in 1979 of the Alliance Premier League (now the top National division of our current league), which creamed off the best Northern Premier and Southern League clubs to provide an undisputed Non-league champion club that would be put up for election to the Football League, thereby ensuring that votes would not be split between several non-league clubs applying in the same year. This was followed in 1987 by automatic promotion to the Football League, whereby Scarborough replaced Lincoln City without needing to defeat the old pals brigade who only ever seemed to vote against existing members in remote geographical locations such as Workington or Barrow.

    For a couple of years now I've been suggesting our club could potentially be as big as AFC Wimbledon, who are now three levels above us and regularly filling a ground 50% larger than ours with a new much bigger ground on the horizon. I'd say we're already bigger than Barnet and Dagenham, both of whom have had spells in the Football League before dropping down again, and both of whom struggled to pull average crowds of 2,000 except in a particularly good season when they were there. However the one large factor mitigating against us is surely that we are never likely to have a ground capacity of more than 5,000 at the most.

    Of course we now have the play-offs, which means that anyone finishing seventh in our division and winning a play-off quarter final has as much chance of gong up as the second placed team. Obviously I want to see entertaining football and a winning team, but a really successful club that makes a habit of qualifiying for play-offs and wins them can hit a glass ceiling much quicker than used to be the case. With hindsight those five play-off failures in seven seasons looks a bit like a blessing in disguise. It's enabled the club to keep growing off the field, with new supporters seeing a very high percentage of league wins over that time. I wonder how different things might have worked out had we won that very first final at Leatherhead in 2011? (Don't forget our average league attendance that season was just 225, less than half the figure when we eventually went up in style two years later.) Would we have come straight back down again like they did? Would we have become a mediocre Premier Division side like Harrow, doing just enough to stay up each season? Either way it must be doubtful the big crowds would have come flocking in quite the same way, or that there wouldn't have been a change of team management at some point, or that we would have survived the fallout from the Meadow/Council dispute.

    Whichever league/division we're in I'd like to see us rise to challenge of moving up a level, but right now I don't feel quite as impatient to do so as I did before the last two promotions. Playing games all over the country would be a novelty, I love away trips to different places, I'll try to do as many as I can afford to if it happens. However I also suspect certain destinations would soon lose their appeal and I'd become more selective about travelling away. I like going to a few games a season as a neutral so it wouldn't be a great hardship to miss yet another trip to a dismal outpost 100+ miles away with excessive security and segregation arrangments where it costs £18-£20 on the gate, though not too many as I miss the company of friends for the Hamlet awaydays. In fact I'm getting a bit like that already in this division. I can't see myself revisiting Hemel Hempstead in a hurry with its terrible public transport links. Concord would be another one this season if it wasn't the final fixture. I've already decided I probably won't bother with Havant in February, having already been this season for the FA Cup match.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2019 at 4:30 PM
  13. Dulwich Mishi

    Dulwich Mishi Old Skool Terrace Dinosaur-embracing the new-veau!

    Of course in reality, as you know, there’s a huge difference between wanting to win every game and actually winning every game. It’s very rare in football, about as rare as you not posting on here to shit stir & reel someone in.
    But if we did get prompt to National League National some day I’d still want us to win games & become established there after consolidating.
    That might mean eventually Football League one day, it might not. That doesn’t mean it’s my ambition, but -won, lose or draw- I’d still support the Club whatever level we play at.
    And I would certainly NEVER want crowds to plummet by 75% or more... though if you were one of those to disappear that would certainly be some consolation .
  14. Dulwich Mishi

    Dulwich Mishi Old Skool Terrace Dinosaur-embracing the new-veau!

    I would suggest it’s much like games at the moment which are very much cover free in terms of atmosphere as any singing comes from behind the goals.
    I’m far more concerned about how lo g it’s taking Southwark councillors to hear the application...
    Pink Panther likes this.
  15. B.I.G

    B.I.G Well-Known Member

    So not twisting things in an urban style then. And no one mentioned crowds plummeting by 75%. In fact you may find crowds suffer the higher up the pyramid you get.

    Perhaps you might actually like to think through your position with a little more rigour.
  16. B.I.G

    B.I.G Well-Known Member

    So completely lacking in atmosphere, which doesn’t affect performances on the pitch in anyway at all.
  17. tonysingh

    tonysingh Random Clever and Witty Strapline

    Secretly I think B.I.G and Mishi really are quite fond of each other and this arguing is just for show
  18. Dulwich Mishi

    Dulwich Mishi Old Skool Terrace Dinosaur-embracing the new-veau!

    Not actually true, if we was knocked down dead by a bus I’d simply shrug my shoulders.
    It’s people who die that I like, or are friends, that I miss and mourn.
    But you know that, as you don’t like him either.
  19. tonysingh

    tonysingh Random Clever and Witty Strapline

    Nope, you're mistaken. Always said he's a top bloke.
  20. StephenMac

    StephenMac Well-Known Member

    That's a shame. He showed more concern when you had your heart attack than most.
  21. Dulwich Mishi

    Dulwich Mishi Old Skool Terrace Dinosaur-embracing the new-veau!

    Well, judging by some of the stuff he’s posted about me on here in the past that concern doesn’t hold much water for me.
    Some people I’d miss, some I wouldn’t.
  22. Dulwich Mishi

    Dulwich Mishi Old Skool Terrace Dinosaur-embracing the new-veau!

    Last edited: Dec 4, 2019 at 8:55 AM
  23. editor

    editor hiraethified

    Was that a private message? If so, it goes against the board rules to post up such material, so please remove it ASAP, thank you.

  24. EDC

    EDC A Slightly Less Invisible Cyber Fan These Days

    Bored of this now, nothing to do with the Oxford thread. Threats of violence against other Dulwich fans is not on.
    Ronco, TonyWalt, the 12th man and 4 others like this.
  25. Moroccan Sunset

    Moroccan Sunset Well-Known Member

    You're absolutely right, EDC. We should get back to the important topics, the things that really matter.

    What about those bloody key-janglers, eh?
    TonyWalt and editor like this.
  26. EDC

    EDC A Slightly Less Invisible Cyber Fan These Days

    The results have got worse since people have started doing it.
  27. Cat Daisy

    Cat Daisy Active Member

    In this slump since the August Bank Holiday, we have been able to beat 3 teams from this division - except that was in cup competitions. What's going on there?

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