Sunday, 12 December 2010
217 Matt Dickins
Matt is the taller keeper
Position : Goalkeeper
Played : 1994-95
Appearances : 4
Goals : 0
Matt was signed on loan from Blackburn after Neil Dunford's cock-up against Fulham. He began his career at Sheffield United but didn't make the grade and signed for Lincoln in 1990. After just 27 appearances he was signed for £250,000 during Kenny Dalglish's initial kid-in-a sweetshop spending spree at Blackburn Rovers. He made one appearance during their promotion season but soon became third choice when Tim Flowers was signed and therefore prime loan material, playing 19 games for Blackpool in 1992-93.
In truth most loan players don't make much of an impact - for every Chris O Grady there's three or four Lee Buggies - but you couldn't say that about Matt. At the end of his traumatic month with us our promotion credentials were history and Dave Sutton was a dead man walking. A Blackburn fan at work warned me that his confidence was shot to pieces and so it proved. The nightmare began away at Wigan where he'd let in 4 by half time (a useful present for their newly-appointed manager Graham Barrow). Next stop was Torquay and another 4 past him the last of which was powder-puff shot that seemed to go straight through him and prompted a one man pitch invasion. At the time I was with a group of fans behind the dug-out berating the manager. Home fans got a look at him in the next game against Mansfield where we had to score three to get a point then more misery at Carlisle with another 4 the last of which was a carbon copy of the Torquay fumble.
In slight mitigation he was playing behind a post-Alan Reeves defence which variously included Neil Matthews, Steve Doyle and Paul Williams which can't have done anything for his fragile confidence. He also managed a clean sheet in an Autoglass tie against Wigan so he made a contribution to our run to the Northern Final.
Later in the season he joined Stockport on a free, Danny Bergara boasting that he'd signed a quarter-million pound keeper for nothing, and unbelievably got a run of games in preference to Neil Edwards ! Bergara stepped down shortly afterwards and after featuring just once under Dave Jones Matt was released to join Altrincham where he played for 3 seasons.