MISS­ING FAN WAS ME STUCK ON A34!

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Adam El­lis

THERE’S never a good time for your car to break down, not least when you are on your way to back your team in a crunch pro­mo­tion clash. For Ox­ford United fan Liam Walker, that’s ex­actly what hap­pened when his Peu­geot 3008 died a slow death on his way to sup­port the U’s against pro­mo­tion ri­vals Portsmouth.

It takes 90 min­utes to travel from Ox­ford to Frat­ton Park, but Liam would miss a more im­por­tant 90 min­utes of foot­ball by be­ing stranded on the A34.

Un­mis­tak­able

“As the road ap­proaches New­bury (from Ox­ford), there are a se­ries of very steep hills. As we hit the first one, the en­gine be­gan sig­nif­i­cantly over-revving and los­ing power,” Walker ex­plained.

“It was then a case of try­ing to find a safe place to pull over, but be­fore that could hap­pen we hit the se­cond and steep­est of the hills. It would have been eas­ier skateboarding up Mount Everest! As I opened the car door, I could smell the un­mis­tak­able aroma of clutch.”

Faced with the dilemma of a bro­ken-down car and a fastap­proach­ing kick-off, two of Liam’s car pool rushed away to find the near­est train sta­tion.

At least one of the broth­er­hood stuck to the mantra of never leav­ing a man be­hind and stayed with his fel­low fan to wait for the RAC. PIC­TURE OF MIS­ERY: Ox­ford fan Liam, left, and mate be­side their stricken car and U’s play­ers cel­e­brat­ing the win­ner

“We had to wait an­other hour or so for the break­down truck to ar­rive,” he said. “It was about 2pm by then and they weren’t keen to take us to Portsmouth, wait for the match to fin­ish and then drive us home again – we did ask!

“We were in the pub by kick­off watch­ing Soc­cer Satur­day on Sky and fol­low­ing the game on twit­ter.

Tweeted

“It was mid­way through the se­cond half when a friend drew my at­ten­tion to a tweet from the of­fi­cial Ox­ford United feed stat­ing there was a fan miss­ing, judg­ing by the num­ber of tick­ets sold.

“I tweeted back to tell them it must have been me. Soon af­ter, the tweet went vi­ral.

There were some pos­i­tives to come out of it. Ox­ford won 1-0, and League spon­sors Sky Bet of­fered an all-ex­penses-paid trip to an away day of his choos­ing.

But what’s the dam­age ac­cord­ing to the garage me­chan­ics? “A new clutch and flywheel will set me back £1,000,” he lamented.

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