When he joined us from St Ives his impact was immediate and prolific. Looking back now, it seemed he scored a hat-trick every game of his first season. That tailed off last season to the odd cameo, and by this season he was so far down the pecking order that he struggled to hold down a place on the terraces, let alone the starting XI. His inability to actually get to our matches didn't help him much, Nor was his seemingly indifference to any possible footballing career.
We all heard tales of his trials with bigger clubs the length and breadth of the country, where he would turn up late, at the wrong place, or not all all, One was left with the impression that his default position was to hope for the best, but then shrug of the shoulders when everything went wrong. A shame as he has everything going for him as a footballer, except the drive to actually make it.
So, it's farewell to Dubi, but we all have some great memories of him. Leaving aside his goals, my top three Dubi moments were: -
1) The game away to Rugby a few seasons ago (when we spanked them for fully 90 minutes and only got a draw, and not the game when they spanked us and we left with the title). In the first half we had something like 350 corners in front of our assembled masses on their huge terrace. At one point we were singing Dubi's name and he stopped and looked at the fans with a sweet mixture of amazement and embarrassment, reflecting perhaps the fact that such adulation was completely new to him. At St Ives it is probable the closest he got to this was when a couple of their lunkish retards accidentally poured beer on his feet as they attempted to pat him on the back.
|Dubi sprints for the exit|
3) More of a personal one. We were winning away to Biggleswade, on an evening when Canavan was destroying the home team single-handedly. Towards the end of the game, with Dubi having been substituted, we had a goal disallowed for offside. As ever, maintaining the theatrics of modern football, our entire bench jumped up and berated the officials for daring to cost us another goal.
I was stood on my own (sad, I know), 10 yards from the dug-out, and perfectly level with the offside decision. Our guy was so far offside, even a linesman at our level couldn't help but get the decision correct. Even as our management team and subs were still lambasting the officials, Dubi turned to me and raised his eyebrows in a questioning manner. I nodded and motioned with my wide-placed hands how far our guy was offside. Dubi merely nodded and re-took his seat in the dugout even as his colleagues were still ranting and raving.
A cool customer. Which was part of his quality as a player. And also, unfortunately, may prove to keep him playing park football when he should be performing at a much higher level.