A decade ago today Rommy Boco wrote his name into the Accrington Stanley’s history books.
When the Benin international, then 21, latched onto Paul Warhurst misjudged backpass to loft the ball into the Barnet net and hand the Reds a 1-0 lead he made history.
Boco’s goal was Stanley’s first in the Football League since Mike Ferguson registered back in 1962.
“I didn’t realise until over the years people have kept speaking about it,” explained the 31-year-old. “Then I could see that it was really important. For a club like Accrington that had been around since the beginning to go out of the league, go through the struggles and come back was such a great thing.
“The Football League was a new thing for a lot of the lads. Most hadn’t played in the league, we were only a young team and we didn’t know how we would do and we struggled a bit at first. We kept most of the team from the Conference because we’d done really well the year before but we realised the Football League was different.
“We started by losing games and it was difficult. That game gave us our first win. It was the start of big things for us. I was pleased to get the two goals but the main thing at the time was concentrating on the next game. I never realised what that meant for the fans and people who had been around Accrington for so long.”
Ten years on Boco is back with Stanley and marked his return to the starting eleven after a serious facial injury with a goal against Doncaster last weekend.
He feels plenty has changed for the better since he got Stanley started in football’s oldest league ten years ago ahead of tomorrow’s game against the Bees.
“It’s more settled now,” said Boco. “Then and for a couple of years after we got promoted we were strugglers and everyone marked us a little team in the Football League that would struggle to stay up. Now everyone takes us seriously, this is not an easy place to come and people don’t like playing against Accrington.
“We’re now quite strong every year but that brings the problem of losing players. They do well here and get a move. We have to deal with that. It’s just football. It happens in the Premier League. Some clubs sell and others don’t sell. Every year we have to build but players want to play for Accrington now. That’s the difference now. They want to come here and do well and that’s a good thing for the club.”