You cannot begin to imagine how much I wanted to do a Marcus Richardson piece here, a criminally underrated player for us during the Keith era and one I think might have given us the edge in the 2005 Play off Final.
The trouble is, I’ve already written about him loads, so I thought I ought to do someone new. That means no Joe Allon either, or Magic Johnson, or Tony Lormor. Hell, I’ve already done Trevor Carson too. I thought there would be so many to choose from!
By process of elimination, I’ve arrived on today’s player; Adie Mike.
Mike was best described as a journeyman when he came to the Imps, having represented Manchester City, Bury, Linköping, Stockport County, Hartlepool, Doncaster Rovers, Leek Town, Hednesford Town, Southport, Northwich Victoria and Stalybridge Celtic before wearing the red and white. He scored after just two matches at Maine Road, and represented them in the Premier League.
He had a loan spell with Hartlepool, scoring once as they went down 3-2 at home to Brighton in 1996. He played with Joe Allon in that game, a nice little link back to my opening paragraph or two. Anyway, there was no doubt he was entering the final stages of his career when he signed for Keith Alexander; in fact, it could be said he’d been in them for some time. However, him and Keith knew each other from Mike’s time at Northwich Victoria and our gaffer at the time snared him on a short-term deal. Upon joining Keith remarked; “Adie’s a very good player and did very well for me at Northwich. If we get him fit I’m sure he’ll push our other strikers for a place in the starting team.”
To everyone’s surprise, (well, to my surprise, I can’t speak for everyone), he did. He netted three goals in his first seven games which suggested we might have found a new hero. He levelled Luke Rodgers’ opener for Shrewsbury in August as we won 2-1, then bagged a consolation for us against Carlton Palmer’s Stockport in the League Cup. On September 17th he got his third Imps goal away at Hartlepool as we lost 2-1. Briefly, he burned bright, but then nothing happened through until New Year. That ended our hopes of having found a new hero, and he played his last game as he had his first against Boston on New Year’s Day.
After his spell with us he went back into the non-league scene, playing for Gainsborough, as well as Droylsden, Mossley and Leek Town. He also had a short stint in Ireland with Cliftonville, but didn’t play in the Football League again.
Mike had built a reputation as a quick and powerful striker, but as his pace faded and the goals didn’t come he looked increasingly frustrated. However even if his entire Lincoln career is nothing more than a goal in a 2-1 win then so be it, that 2-1 contributed to our first ever day out at a national stadium. Adie Mike played his part in that, no matter how small.
Since retiring, he’s obtained a law degree, and set up a firm hiring out private jets.