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What was it like when we were good?

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37 minutes ago, unsworth blue said:

It was a great time to be alive. I had been a regular home and away supporter since 1974 and had witnessed the great days of 1973/74 and our establishing ourselves in the Second Division over time, mixing it with much bigger clubs. We hadn't really had a cup run to speak of apart from 2 visits to round 5 of the FA Cup in late 70s. The good days for me really started when we overachieved and came 3rd in 1986/87 (the first season of the play offs and we came bastard 3rd lol). The crowds didn't really come then but the team was homegrown and doughty and our support base was growing again slowly. 1987/88 was a bit flat results wise (kept drawing 2-2) but the football was very watchable, 1988/89 started very disappointingly but in late November, big Joe signed Frank Bunn and the fun really started. in the last 20 games of that season, we scored 50 goals - beat bastard Rovers 4-2 at home on Good Friday (they were going up that season and we leathered them) and 1989/90 came with a fair sprinkling of optimism. What happened was beyond belief. A slow start and then the team really clicked, I think the players started believing in themselves, they really gelled and we beat Arsenal 3-1 in 4th round of the league cup in front of 14,500 in November. It was unbelievable, Latics thumped mighty Arsenal (top of the First Division at the time) and in front of the BBC cameras. The league form was great at home as well and the whole country started waking up to this wonderful little club who played great attacking football, home and away, never played with cynicism, just a refreshing venture into how football should be played. We went to the Dell in 5th round, Saints were a great home side at the time and attacked with great aplomb, 2000 supporters travelled on a Tuesday night only for the home club to take one of the away pens for their own fans leaving 600 locked out. Ritchie's last minute equaliser was more than deserved and we won the home game easily in front of 18,500. The crowds at home games were increasing too, 12000- 15000 were quite regular in second half of that season. If you went out in town, there were always lots of lads / lassies who wanted to talk about Latics, we used to park near Chaddy Town Hall and the Sun Mill Inn was packed with latics fans on match days. Beating West Ham 6-0 on Valentines Day was surreal - came out thinking "Bloody hell, we are going to Wembley for a Cup Final".  Wembley was fabulous, Latics had more than 30,000 there - perhaps 1/2 proper Latics and 1/2 ex-latics or hangers-on or just Oldhamers out for the day. We had more there than Forest!! The FA cup run was in full flow as well and we beat Everton in a 2nd replay (2 home games x 19000 crowds) and then beat Aston Villa 3-0 to reach the semis against United. We actually were playing much better football than United at the time but they managed to scrape through the semis after a replay. The league form held up but too many games in too short a time with a small squad meant we finished 8th. At the time, Latics were everybody's second favourite team - they really took the nation's heart and Joe Royle was interviewed for the England job.  Joe had stayed on to finish the job instead of going to City in December and the whole town loved it. We had 5000+ season ticket holders the following season and went 17 games unbeaten at the start of the season before losing at Port Vale 1-0. I think the regulars all knew we were going up - many of us selected Ipswich as the place our dream would be realised at the start of the season. The football never faded, we scored goals aplenty, won 15 at home in a season, scored a total of 88 goals and the Chaddy End was roaring. Great days - easily recalled, I went to 58/67 games in 1989/90 and missed about 4  in 1990/91. Wonderful wonderful days, players who loved the club, fans loved the players and manager......60000 turned out in Oldham to welcome the lads home from Wembley and the following year to celebrate promotion.  Never ever forget the feeling of pride at being a Latics fan...…...God they seem a long time ago now                                    

this  also started going in 73/4  watched us build from then onwards to those wonderfull years from christmas 88 to may 93  heady days 

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I took over running OASIS about a fortnight before Frankie's 6 vs Scarborough.  Good timing!

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Just now, peanuts said:

this  also started going in 73/4  watched us build from then onwards to those wonderfull years from christmas 88 to may 93  heady days 

 

I started going in 1970/71 but away games as well in 1973/74 - those fabulous years 1986/87 but particularly November 1988 to May 1993 as you say were something to behold. 1993/94 never seemed the same did it? Latics changed personnel, the way we played, too many hangers on in the crowd by then expecting too much and the rot set in. Never really looked like staying up until that spell before the FA Cup semi final with United. Mark Bastard Hughes put paid to that dream and we never won again but by then the magic had gone, the club made a profit o player sales in the Premiership, the Chaddy End was seated and happiness evaporated. Needed to try and get back as soon as we went down but club chose prudence and the glory days were gone forever.     

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2 minutes ago, Dave_Og said:

I took over running OASIS about a fortnight before Frankie's 6 vs Scarborough.  Good timing!

It was Dave - at any one time, what was the maximum number of fans in OASIS? 

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Just now, unsworth blue said:

It was Dave - at any one time, what was the maximum number of fans in OASIS? 

we'd have been close to 200

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3 minutes ago, Dave_Og said:

we'd have been close to 200


....by way of comparison, there’s 46 in the WhatsApp group today....

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All of the above resonates so I won't repeat it.

 

I was 25 when we beat Sheffield Wednesday, nephew still occasionally brings up how at full time I looked at his then 8 year old self in tears and said "Don't you ever, ever fucking forget this", I always was poetic (and generally 8 pints in on matchdays, surprised my sister entrusted me with him).

 

One that hasn't been mentioned was Wolves away in the season we got promoted 2-1 down to 3-2 up inside 90 seconds, we were still jumping up and down celebrating Marshy's equaliser when he did it again.

 

Another thing that's always made me smile about that period was, in Sky's fledgling broadcasts after getting the football contract, they had a programme with Andy Gray previewing the next live game where he had a pitch with counters on to represent the 2 teams and he moved them around as he illustrated how the teams set up and played. Think we were playing Everton, he went through his spiel on what they would do then turned to us.

 

Still remember exactly what he said "And when Oldham get the ball this happens."... He picked up all our outfield counters and threw them up the pitch into the Everton half... It was a totally perfect illustration of how we'd gone about our business for the previous 2 years, you genuinely didn't care how many the other team scored as you always felt we had one more than them in us.

 

One thing I will repeat that's been mentioned earlier... It really, really was a ride. 😉

 

 

 

Edited by inspectormorose
grammar
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28 minutes ago, Dave_Og said:

we'd have been close to 200

10% of our home crowd on Tuesday Dave - wonder what happened to those who have lost the faith...…     

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Being 14-19 during the most successful period in our history. Shagging, drinking, being fucking young AND watching little old Oldham lord it over almost every club worth their salt in the country. Bit priceless that, if you ask me.

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I feel so sad about Latics at the moment that I can’t bring myself to read this thread. I know it’ll make the darkness even darker in comparison. 😢

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My first football match was November 1971 Man Utd 3 Spurs 1 in front of 54000. A few months later my Dad took me to Oldham v Torquay and Latics won with a late goal from a corner if my 7 year old memories serve me right. It was love at first sight.

 

This thread is bringing back so many great memories

 

Keep the faith, we’ll be back 🙂

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Shit, you know it’s bad when this kind of reminiscing doesn’t throw up shouts of ‘living in the past’!

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It's Barry Davies' 82nd birthday today, so it feels apt to share this. 

 

 

We had 3 sides of the ground that day (2 full stands and a bit of the Kippax too). 

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Joe Royle's role can't be overstated. Yeah, we had luck at times but we made our luck by having an attacking mindset and never giving in. Our team then seemed to reflect his personality - go out, give it a go and just play. 

He had a plan. Get young players in (especially defenders) who were mobile and had a point to prove. Have a few in the squad who can play in different positions - handy when injuries kick in. Above all, keep it simple - two ball winners, two wingers, get the ball in the box, repeat. Simple. 

He also got why people come to watch football. Fuck your Jose Mourinho-style pragmatism. Most fans (I believe) aren't that bothered about tactics and formations. They just want to see attacks, goals, saves, action. Giving it a go. Joe Royle got that. 

It was amazing. Some of the happiest memories of my life, without a doubt. 

Edited by perfectOzblue
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8 hours ago, rudemedic said:

It's Barry Davies' 82nd birthday today, so it feels apt to share this. 

 

 

We had 3 sides of the ground that day (2 full stands and a bit of the Kippax too). 

 

"What an unbelievable day this is"

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8 minutes ago, longtimeblue said:

 

"What an unbelievable day this is"

And I was at the Grand National the day before. Had worse weekends

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21 hours ago, lookersstandandy said:

Never losing to Man City at Maine Road.

Going toe to toe with Yoonited on at least 5 occasions.

Dale, Bury, Stockport, Wigan, Bolton, all vastly inferior sides.

Taking 6,000 away to Barnsley and not singing we're taking over your town again.

It was often really good weather on some of our big days out.

Beating Chelsea more times than they beat us.

Always expecting to score/win.

Never giving up cos we'd scored late or put a run together to get out of trouble so many times.

WIngers that hugged the touchline and swung in cross after cross to attack. None of this tippy-tappy yawny bollox.

A superb collection of mullets.

Freekicks & corners were genuine goal scoring opportunities are rarely hit the 1st defender.

The soundtrack, a generation defining music scene based in Manchester.

No Bosman rule. You signed for us, we held your registration until we decided to sell you.

We had songs for most of our players.

Joe Royle once said in an interview in around 1993 as we embarked on another cup run, "We want to threaten Europe".

 

 

Pretty much sums it up Andy... Oh happy days!! 

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Incredible times, those Joe Royle years. I'd been living and working away from Oldham for over 20 years when it all started, but I got to as many games as I could, home and away 

 

I couldn't wait for Saturday to come round, the football had you on the edge of your seat. It really was a philosophy of 'you score 3, we'll score 4'. Big Joe even called his defence 'the suicide squad' at one point because they were always capable of gifting goals because of their attacking mindset.

 

Some games I couldn't get to because of where I was working, so the televised cup games had me going crazy with excitement, they were that good. I was lucky enough to be at both FA Cup semis against that red lot (thanks Worrall, I'll never forgive you) and I cried on the Wembley terraces when we lost the League Cup final. But I was so proud of that team.

 

My only regret was that my Dad wasn't well enough to be there, so he cried in front of the TV instead.

 

After that game, Brian Clough said Latics should be allowed to play in Europe. He said the team and the fans were simply the best and would have deserved it.

 

So many memories, even if I didn't see it all, but I saw more than enough for me to remember what a cracking time it was. No one can take that away, but I doubt we'll ever get anywhere near it again.

 

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Think there was a few more than 2000 tics in the ground at The Dell!

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Could never find a parking spot.

Took ages to get served at the Clayton bar.

There was always some ‘football tourist’ I had to move from my seat.

Hated the patronising way that the football commentators spoke of ‘little’ Oldham.

Always knew it wouldn’t last.

😉

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The giant scoreboard with the funny 'graphics' ('OOOHH' when we went close).

 

Speed walking from the Fireside Corner shop (where my Mum used to drop us off for home games) with my Dad because I wanted to get a good place at the front of the Chaddy End.

 

The Rochdale Road End (still terraces) absolutely packed when a 'big' team came and brought a load. It looked scary from the opposite end. 

 

Taking in the Kop from the other end of the ground, first game of the season 90/91. Pinching myself I was at Anfield. 

 

Andy Ritchie always seeming to play with a smile on his face. 

 

'Please Joe Don't Go' on the scoreboard. 

 

Brilliant times. 

Edited by perfectOzblue

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I'm pretty sure it was more than 3 seasons before I saw us lose for the first time (never went away). I really believed that it was my doing!

 

On a side note I'm trying to think what TV or radio channel would let Ricky Holden on these days. Not BBC1 before the watershed...

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Hope AL is reading this. Get nepo back, Smith, eagles, some decent forwards and get some balls in the dam box. Dino says he wins or loses! Let's have that mentality and crack on!

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