Football in Bracknell
History & Nostalgia

When Roberto Di Matteo came to stay at Bracknell

Roberto Di Matteo’s dismissal last week by Chelsea will jog a lot of memories for the older Larges Lane faithful, who witnessed the former West Brom boss attend a tie between his then side Milton Keynes Dons side and the Robins in a Berks & Bucks Senior County Cup tie.

Roberto Di Matteo - photo Reading Post

From Duds match report on the night – “With Dons first-team manager Roberto Di Matteo in the dugout, the Dons put in a good performance, but they could not find a way past the resilient Robins side who were fortunate to have goalkeeper Max Aneke in superlative form.”

Several things are striking about this game back in 2008:

The first being that Di Matteo was not expected to be in attendance, it was largely a Reserve side fielded, but when he did arrive, there were very few airs and graces, and he seemed a genuinely decent chap.

The second, is the now famous story of the Champions League winner’s head meeting the top of the dugout. Dudley will undoubtedly explain it better, but on taking his place in the away dugout for the second period, Di Matteo turned and promptly whacked his head on the low roof.

The third and final being that this was a rare win and somewhat of an upset for the Robins – who won 1-0 courtesy of a Michael Buck strike (seen below) – as Bracknell struggled against relegation for much of the season following their dismissal from the FA Cup for fielding an inneligable player.

Read the match report from Tuesday 11th November here.

Bracknell went on to play Maidenhead United in the next round but were beaten 2-1 at Larges Lane.

If you have any memories of the night, then do let us know!

Tom Canning

Tom is the co-editor of FootballinBracknell. He has played at the lowest possible level of football. In real life Tom works for Trinity Mirror.

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  1. […] the Senior Cup having reached the final in 2000s losing out to Chesham United, while they beat an MK Dons team managed by Roberto Di Matteo 1-0 at Larges Lane in 2008 courtesy of a goal from Michael […]