My Team & I: Carlisle United

Carlisle United

By David Peacock

Twitter: @DavePeacock264

Why Carlisle?

Simple question to start – I’ve lived in Carlisle all my life. I always believe in supporting your hometown club and, although I am also a Liverpool fan, I will always follow Carlisle as well.

Favourite Player?

It’s a sad reality that teams down in Leagues 1 and 2 rarely have players that stay for their entire career. They either outgrow the club and leave for a big transfer fee, decide they need a change of scenery or a wage increase, or drop down a division or two find their form again. The latter of those reasons was why Michael Bridges joined Carlisle in 2005, initially on loan from Bristol City. Bridges scored 19 Premier League goals in his first season for Leeds, a feat many top rated strikers would struggle to do. Injuries prevented him kicking on though and down the divisions he came. I saw Bridges’ debut and he was clearly a class act. His partnership with Karl Hawley catapulted the Blues to the League 2 title. He was a joy to watch at times and I’ll always look back on that season remembering Bridges predominantly.


Favourite Game?

Carlisle United 2 Plymouth Argyle 1

On 8th May 1999, a miracle happened at Brunton Park. Carlisle had struggled all season, with one of the thinnest squads in the Football League and the coffers empty, we went into the last day of the season on the brink of relegation to the Conference. If Scarborough win their game, Carlisle are down. In the weeks before, Carlisle had sold first choice goalkeeper Tony Caig to Blackpool, and applied to the FA for special dispensation to make a signing after deadline day. They agreed, and Jimmy Glass of Swindon joined us for the final three games of the season. The score stood at 1-1 after 90 minutes and news filtered through that Scarborough had drawn. As it stood, Carlisle were out of the Football League. Still the Blues pressed, and won a corner 6 minutes into injury time. Glass was urged forward by the bench and, as he arrived in the box, the incoming corner was headed down to his feet. From 8 yards out, Glass smashed the ball into the bottom corner. Cue pandemonium – Carlisle were safe!

Favourite Strip?

The infamous deck-chair shirt! One of those cult classics, best known for Carlisle’s first ever trip to Wembley stadium. We were beaten 1-0 by Birmingham City but it was a huge moment for a club like Carlisle playing in front of 70,000 at the national stadium.


Worst Thing About Supporting Carlisle?

Two things. A lack of fan support means we now get barely 6,000 for home games. Unfortunately, Carlisle will nearly always be a stepping stone club. Because of geography, Carlisle have always struggled to get players to come and play for long periods. If any multi-millionaires out there would like to buy Carlisle, please get in touch!

Favourite Moment?

The feeling of pride when Carlisle beat Leeds United when they were in their first season in League One. They were unbeaten until they came to Brunton Park that day, but cheered on by a huge crowd (by Carlisle standards), Carlisle ripped them apart and Leeds went back down the M6 absolutely shell shocked. Sportingly, the Leeds fans decided to pelt anyone they could see with rocks after the final whistle… wonder why they’re not well liked?!

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