Burly striker Matt Rhead is well on his way to becoming a Lincoln City legend.
Indeed, the billing of Rhead as a legend prompted debate on the recent Stacey West podcast, with my assertion being he is an Imps legend. Winning at Wembley, earning promotion from the National League, getting to an FA Cup quarter-final and remaining at the club from the dark days to the bright ones.
I have, at times, questioned his first team role and the limited approach it gives us now, but there’s no questioning his application, impact nor his huge personality. Rhead is a nice guy, always ready to say hello and always open when chatting in an interview.
This week I caught up with him on his day off in Stoke in readiness for the club programme piece against Carlisle. He was, as ever, chatty and upbeat and someone you can have a laugh with as well as chat openly too. We’ve covered all manner of subjects, his days at home, the long journey and social media trolls. You can read about that in Tuesday’s programme.
You can read some of the interview right now though, starting with a reflection of the club’s win last weekend. As a Stoke fan, the 6-2 victory over Port Vale delighted Rhead, but he paid tribute to the manager after the squad adapted to lots of late changes.
“That (the win) is testament to the gaffer. Everyone is on the same page, whether they’re coming on as sub or starting the game. Look at Harry Anderson, he wasn’t in the side before kick off but came into the side and scored straight away. Everyone is heading in the right direction which is only positive for the rest of the season.”
With the Imps top of the table, I asked Rhead if their approach changed at all, was there one eye on the points gap or was it simply business as usual.
“Nothing changes. We’re just enjoying the run of results, we’re playing well and getting results which means we’re top of the league. We just go into the Cambridge game, that’s our focus and after that we go on to the next one. I think if we keep performing well then, we’ll have success this season.”
Finally, the boys had been taking part in a FIFA tournament, won by Bruno Andrade. Oddly, Andrade didn’t mention it during my chat with him for the Cambridge programme, but Rhead confirmed that he doesn’t think any of them are any good anyway. When asked if he’d taken part, he laughed and said;
“No, I’m too old for that! To be fair the boys take their computers on away days when we stop over and have a bit of a competition, but I don’t think any of them are any good to be fair. I’ll keep away from that, I don’t like losing which doesn’t help.”
If you ever need proof that Rhead is too old for playing FIFA, remember he referred to the consoles as ‘computers’ Proper old school is our Matt.
If you want to read the rest of the interview, make sure you pick up the club programme next week as we face Carlisle United.