Monday, 24 November 2014

The Alternative End...

Pre match, the Valley Crowd rose to their feet as one, eagerly awaiting their returning hero. Big Dave Lockwood, still behind the mike after nearly 40 years service invites the 55,000 sell out crowd to view the big screens perched high on the roofs at either end of the vast Valley stadium.  
"Let me take you back to the 22nd of November 2014..." he bellows enthusiastically. 
A loud cheer rang out as the video began. The Covered End drummer began beating a defiant rhythm. A few near misses to endure first as the hearts of tens of thousands of Addicks began to beat faster and faster. Then that glorious moment. Harriott slots the ball through to Tucudean, who, with ruthless abandon drills the ball high into the Millwall net. If he'd have picked up the ball and walked it to the goal he couldn't have placed it better. The Valley erupted wildly once again, just as they did 20 years earlier!
"And here he is. Ladies and Gentlemen, Geeeooooorge!"    
The applause rang around the valley for a good few minutes before Big Dave called for order.
"George, Just try and tell us what that moment meant for you and Charlton" asked Big Dave
In broken English the Romanian spoke to his adoring public. "For me, it was the turning point. To think that I would go on and score 24 goals that season, including the goal that got us promotion, was unbelievable. To see how the club have pushed on in the last two decades is remarkable and I'm proud to say I was part of it until my transfer to Barca. Winning the FA Cup the following year was special; it was my first game at Wembley, but of course, we would get used to that place for a while" 
"And do you feel guilty for what happened to Millwall that year and since?" Big Dave asked mischievously. George's smile seemed to reach the full width of the big screen to the amusement of the crowd. His humble dignity did not allow him to gloat and he politely declined to comment.
Tucudean left the pitch a hero once again, pumping his fist towards the Covered End. Alongside him was his son, Johnnie, born on that same day 20 years previous.
East Stander and Charlton fan, Hungry Ted, commented "I remember back in '98 when Shaun Newton stepped up to take his penalty in the Play-Off Final I was convinced he'd miss. I'd have put my mortgage on it and I was so relieved when I was proved wrong. That day I was 100% certain George would score. Never in question. What a moment. I've got a picture of George above my bed alongside Sir Chris. The missus hates it but the man's a legend, simple as that".  

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