April 14, 2001 Premier­ship Mid­dles­brough fan, Louis Dixon

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“I drove down to Lon­don from Boro with my dad Ian and best mate Lee. The closer we got to High­bury, the more our op­ti­mism grew, and I can even re­call Ra­dio 1 pre­dict­ing a 1-0 win for Mid­dles­brough.

In the pub you could feel all of the ex­cite­ment build­ing and fans belted out Boro songs out­side the sta­dium.

We went 1-0 up and the away end roared, be­fore unit­ing for a ren­di­tion of ‘Ei, Ei, Eio’. Soon it was 2-0 and we sang ‘Roll on Va­len­cia’, who Ar­se­nal would play in the Cham­pi­ons League the fol­low­ing Tues­day.

Dur­ing half-time, fans were tak­ing pic­tures of the score­board. ‘It won’t look like that at full-time,’ I thought, ex­pect­ing the in­evitable come­back.

The sec­ond half was a bit of a blur, thanks more to an Ar­se­nal on­slaught than any­thing al­co­hol-re­lated. Just be­fore the hour, a del­i­cate Alen Bok­sic back­heel fooled Tony Adams, al­low­ing Hamil­ton Ri­card to score with the finest of toe-pokes. No chance would we lose from 3-0 up, surely? Ar­se­nal fans headed to the ex­its but a few near the away end clapped, say­ing, ‘En­joy your day.’

When David Sea­man took a goal-kick we would all shout, ‘Oh­h­h­hhh porn star!’ due to his hor­ren­dous pony­tail.

Right at the death, it could have been four – Dean Win­dass had an open goal but blazed the ball over the bar. There was still time for Boro an­them ‘Pig­bag’ and a bit of ‘Ohh Terry, Terry, Ven­ables’.

The car trip home – back in time to see Match of the Day – was silent for sev­eral hours be­fore I said, ‘Did we just win 3-0 at High­bury?’ We were still in to­tal shock – since when do Boro go and do that?!”

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