By Chris Wright
“Oh Donna, you made me stand up. You made me sit down, Donna”
Writing in his programme notes for their game against Rochdale at the weekend, Gillingham manager Martin Allen – who, for the uninitiated, is as mad as a bucket of weasels – revealed the secret to his side’s table-topping form in League Two so far this season.
Turns out that Allen has handed over his team-talk duties to a random woman he plucked off the street before the Gills’ 2-0 win over Port Vale the previous week – a post office worker by the name of Donna!
“Last Saturday on the way into Port Vale, as we got off the bus, a lady in a Gillingham shirt asked me for my autograph. She told me that she travelled up from Gillingham on her own, on the train, and she never misses a game.
“She told me her name was Donna and she worked for the post office, she was a season ticket holder and her dad was missing his first game for years.
“She bubbled and oozed happiness and a positive attitude, so I took her into the dressing rooms, introduced her to all the players, had some photographs done with the lads and then she gave a speech, or team talk, to the players from a supporter’s perspective.
“She told them all they were great, she told them all to play the way you have been and she told them all we would win 2-1.”
Allen was apparently so impressed with Oozy Donna’s motivational powers that he invited her to join the squad on the team bus home. As we say, mad as a bucket of weasels.
For the record, Gillingham lost 2-1 against Rochdale. Donna was obviously stuck in traffic.