The University of Lincoln men’s football president Fraser Field believes his side’s togetherness and team spirit led them to victory over Bishop Grosseteste University in this year’s Cathedral Cup.
The 20-year-old helped the university to a convincing 5-1 win over their local rivals to regain the trophy last week at Sincil Bank, after Bishop Grosseteste won 3-1 in 2016.
Field, who played in central defence on the night, got his hands on the trophy in what was his only Cathedral Cup appearance, as the University of Lincoln has a policy of only playing third years in the annual match.
Asked about whether he thought the policy benefitted the team, he said: “We’ve all known each other for a couple of years, we’re all very comfortable around each other.
“The togetherness was definitely there. We felt it before the game, at half-time and after the final whistle, and that helped see us through.
After watching the last two meetings from the stands, Field had the chance to represent his side not only as a player, but as the team president.
“It’s a completely different level,” he said. “Watching football is horrible regardless, you always want to be out there.
“There was definitely a lot of organising to do and I think that benefitted me, I didn’t really think about the game until the day itself.
“If you focus on your own game, nine times out of ten that pays off and it certainly did on Wednesday night.”
When asked whether Bishop Grosseteste had more experience heading into the game, he said: “They were arguably better prepared for the game than us.
“They probably had five or six players who had played in every Cathedral Cup so far, but it’s a game of football at the end of the day and you just play what’s in front of you.”
Field also said the talent within the University of Lincoln squad was a key factor in securing the emphatic win.
“I knew we had plenty of quality going forward in the team and I think that showed on the night, especially in the second half. I think our quality really shone.
Despite scoring four goals in a rampant second half, the University of Lincoln were slow to get going in the first 45 minutes and went into half-time level at 1-1.
Field said: “It’s obviously gutting to concede after being on that buzz of going 1-0 up in the match, but we held out till half-time and regrouped.
“We went out in the second half and took advantage of maybe some tired legs on BGU’s side, and I was always confident that we’d be able to get back into the game.
“We knew we were better than that first-half performance, so it was a positive half-time team talk. There was no way we weren’t winning that game.”
Asked about the feeling of being crowned Cathedral Cup champions in front of over 1000 fans, Field said: “I was absolutely over the moon.
“After watching BGU lift it from the stands last year, it was nice not only to see the University of Lincoln lift it but to lift it myself. It was a great feeling.
“It was really nice that people came out to support us. People had to go out of their way in horrible weather and we really appreciate that. They were sucking the ball into the net in the second half.
“After putting in all the hard work as president, it meant a lot. As third years we knew we had one chance to make the most of it, and we did.”