Date: 20th July 2007 at 10:21am
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On the 31st December/1st January Boston United were reporting that County had signed Anthony Elding. A signing that raised eyebrows among other League Two fans, but County fans trusted Jim Gannon`s judgement and got behind him. He couldn`t make his debut until the Boston United game at Edgeley Park though! The fee was believed to be around £30,000 and £55,000, though it was never announced.

A nice trip to Shrewsbury is always a good way to start the year of. It actually is aswell. January 1st 2007, a direct train from Stockport to Shrewsbury, and a nice little day out in a nice town. However, the result wasn`t the way that the 700 or so travelling County fans wanted it to be. Shrewsbury took a 3-0 lead with blunders galore from James Spencer in the County nets. It was chucking it down; the pitch was a mud bath and it was New Years Day. Why were we here asked the County fans? Well the next 40 minutes would show why we were County fans. Anthony Pilkington hit back straight away with a beautiful curling effort. 3-1, game on. Pilkington closed the gap with a lovely header against the post and in to make it 3-2 and increase the atmosphere in the away end. County sides of previous would have give in at 3-0 away from home, but not this one. We then saw a prolonged spell of pressure, Michael Malcolm hit the post and County had various other chances but could not find the equaliser. As it happened, County had everybody up for a corner, Shrewsbury broke away and James Spencer somehow got lobbed. We got beat 4-2, but you saw a real fight from the County players. Something that we hadn`t seen under previous managers. This side was on the verge of something special.

The next weekend was a rest from league action and a trip to Premiership doomed Watford in the third round of the FA Cup. Over 3000 County fans made the long trip down, and it was one of those games that we really had nothing to lose in. We weren`t expected to win so lets give it our best shot. And give it our best shot is exactly what we did. Tony Dinning played a perfect through ball to David Poole, who nutmegged the on-loan United keeper Ben Foster. Cue pandemonium. Absolute madness in the away end. County, 11th in League Two, were beating Watford, 20th in the Premiership, a side three divisions above us. Watford were stunned, but they soon hit back. We had our ten minutes of excitement but the rest of the game was really Watford`s. More blunders and more mistakes meant we conceded four again, 4-1 to Watford was the final score. The County fans, however, made it a day to remember and all you could hear for the whole game was the voices of the travelling support. County had their chances, and on another day with a stronger team we may have won. But we had our fun for this season.

You could see that the team was there. Definitely. We were just missing a consistent goalkeeper. So Jim Gannon went to his mate Mick McCarthy at Wolves, who he had already got Stephen Gleeson of, and got young Welsh goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey. Hennessey was about to go from nobody to hero in the next three months. Had we found our team now? With Hennessey in nets, we had a solid centre back partnership of Ashley Williams and Gareth Owen, we had a good midfield paring of Jason Taylor and Stephen Gleeson, and we were producing upfront with Anthony Elding and Adam Proudlock.

Elding`s debut was a relatively quiet one against his old team Boston at Edgeley Park. It was definitely a much more calmer event than the previous two weekends had been at Shrewsbury and Watford. Goals from Adam Proudlock and Tes Bramble gave County a comfortable 2-0 win.

One thing that County couldn`t overcome was the away games. However, County travelled with their new look squad to Peterborough United and played out of their skin. It was a truly amazing turn around. First a Michael Rose free kick from 30 yards gave County the lead, Anthony Elding then headed for two, before Adam Griffin hammered home for three. Was this the turnaround that County had been begging for? Was this the start of something special? 3-0 away from home, two clean sheets on the trot and goals coming from all over the park.

The next weekend Wycombe visited Edgeley Park in what was bound to be a tough game. However, County didn`t look at all troubled and dispatched Wycombe fairly easily. Goals from Anthony Elding and Stephen Gleeson gave County a 2-0 win. In the last three games County had kept three clean sheets, and got seven goals from seven different people. The team were looking much more confident and we were winning games easily.

If the goal at Watford was special, then the league win at Wrexham the following Tuesday night was extremely special. Over a 1000 County fans made the trip on a cold Tuesday, and with the game going nowhere Jim Gannon chucked Liam Dickinson and Tes Bramble on. In the 93rd minute County got a free kick on the half way line. Adam Griffin lumped it forward, Tes Bramble flicked it on and Liam Dickinson somehow headed the ball into the net in front of the travelling support. This was true pandemonium. People were jumping on each other and the Wrexham chavs who had been trying to wind the County fans up were going mental in a different way! The scenes at the end of that game were truly something special. It was an amazing outcome to a boring game.

So an amazing month. We had gone from conceding eight in two games to keeping clean sheets for fun. Four clean sheets on the trot, four wins on the trot, and eight different goalscorers for the eight goals. This was something special. Something very special.