For our latest dip into the WIE archive we don’t travel back too far. Only two years in fact to March 2018. Issue 51 was a 28-page affair, which was dominated by the passing of club President Eric Brackstone in mid-January. Although Eric hadn’t been well for quite a while his death was still a major blow for everyone connected with the club.
The club’s former commercial manager Paul White wrote a wonderful personal tribute to Eric, which can be seen below and was rightly the issue’s centre page spread.
This issue’s other articles included a look at strange events to have occurred during Wings matches, like Loick Pires getting a yellow card for leaving the pitch without the referee’s permission for a pee and Sahr Kabba being the first player to be banned by the FA for feigning injury in the televised game against Tranmere Rovers.
There was also an article looking at the 8 (E I G H T) goalkeepers that had turned out for the club so far that season. They included the likes of Kleton Perntreou and Calum Kitscha; remember them? No, me neither. One of those eight was also Conor Dymond who donned the gloves away at Havant and Waterlooville following Dillon Barnes getting sent off. Dymond saved a penalty and, despite conceding a late goal, did more than enough to secure a valuable away win.
Next up was an account of a visit to Bromley’s Hayes Lane to take in Cray Wanderers against Lewes. Playing for the home team were ex-Wings Barney Williams and Mitchell Nelson. Both ended up being sent off late in the game and Nelson gave away a penalty (of course) to help the visitors to a 2-1 win.
There was next a look at the club badges of Conference South teams, which ranged from the traditional (think Wealdstone and St Albans City), to the more modern (Weston Super Mare, Gloucester City) and more weird/drab (Concord Rangers).
Tim brought his take on the muddiest pitches that he’d seen in his time, and we will bring you that in full tomorrow.
This issue also included a ‘Where are they now?’ looking back at the players who turned out for the club in season 2016/17 and included the likes of the aforementioned Mitchell Nelson, Sean Francis, Sam Hatton, Jamie Slabber, Oli Sprague and Bobby Devyne to name just six. May we never go there again!
The issue finished with a look at the change to the play-off system and, finally, a look back to when WIE featured in an early edition of FourFourTwo magazine. Some may say that it’s been downhill ever since…