Simon Dobbin to make return to Cambridge United

PUBLISHED: 10:40 27 October 2016 | UPDATED: 10:40 27 October 2016

Cambridge United's Matt Walker (left) and Josh Coulson (right) with Simon Dobbin

Cambridge United's Matt Walker (left) and Josh Coulson (right) with Simon Dobbin

ILIFFE

U’s fan to be special guest at Portsmouth match

Simon Dobbin will be the guest of honour at Cambridge United this Saturday when the U’s host Portsmouth.

It will be the U’s fan’s first visit to the Cambs Glass Stadium since he was attacked following a match with Southend in March 2015. He was placed in a medically-induced coma and is now unable to walk or talk.

Club chaplain Stuart Wood has been the conduit between the Dobbin family and the club since the attack, and he was joined by Cambridge United’s longest-serving player Josh Coulson and head of performance Matt Walker in visiting Simon at his Mildenhall home to invite him and his family to the match this weekend.

Josh was among a number of Cambridge United first-team players to have visited Simon during his time in Addenbrookes’, while Matt ran a half marathon in March to raise money for the family.

Simon, his wife Nicole and daughter Emily have been invited to the director’s lounge and he will be introduced to the crowd before kick-off, while 16 of his friends and family members will also be attending the match.

A collection will take place at the turnstiles around the ground on the day in order to help support his family, while Cambridge Dial A Ride has offered to transport Simon, who requires an adapted minibus in order to attend the match, free of charge.

Nicole said: “Simon will love going back. We have been chanting songs to him over the last two weeks with his name in and he smiles back with a great big grin on his face.

“On Saturday, I think he will clearly show how happy he is to be there. It will also be fantastic for the family to see his reaction because we all know it will be good one.

“The support over the last two years has been brilliant and we just don’t want Simon to be forgotten about.

“I want people to remember Simon the way he was and to know that although he has had life changing injuries, he is still in there.”

Cambridge United chairman Dave Doggett said: “We are delighted to be welcoming Simon and his family back to the Cambs Glass Stadium for what will be a hugely poignant moment for everyone associated with Cambridge United.

“We ask all supporters who attend Saturday’s fixture to please donate as generously as possible and hope that everybody can make the day extra special for Simon, Nicole and his family.”

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