Oxford United Chairman Sumrith 'Tiger' Thanakarnjanasuth wrote the following notes for the Hull City match programme:
It is so good to welcome fans back to the ground today, even if it is only a small fraction of the usual number. For the many of you reading this at home, we are sorry you cannot be here but we will continue to work towards larger crowds, game by game. For those of you reading this at the game, welcome home.
After a very difficult afternoon against Swindon last Saturday, it was so important for the players to show a response against Ipswich on Tuesday. I thought they did that and fought for every ball. Watching on iFollow, I saw us create lots of chances and Ipswich had to defend very well, so it felt like we were very unlucky not to win. A clean sheet, another point on the board and an important reaction. Now we have to follow that up against the league leaders.
I would love to be there - Tiger watching the Tigers! - but that’s not possible at the moment. I’ve heard that the experience is so different to a usual game there. The protocols and rules are there for everyone’s safety, but it is such a new experience. I think that will be true for the 1,000 fans who are at the game today.
If you are one of the lucky ones, then can I ask you to please help us by following all the rules. Wear a mask, be patient and maybe don’t expect things to be like you have always known them at football. It is a new experience for everyone, so work with the club and help us show that we can have 1,000 people here, which in turn will mean more fans on Tuesday against Forest Green Rovers and then hopefully more fans for the next league game. That can only happen if we all look after each other.
I would like to thank everyone for your patience when booking tickets. It was a new system and it did not go as smoothly as we would have liked, but we are working hard to see how we can improve for future occasions and it’s important to stress that this was a one-off, something unprecedented, and a more robust system will be in place for future games, where larger numbers are hopefully able to come and join us.
Finally, I am proud that it is ‘Rainbow Laces’ day and that the club is once again raising awareness and highlighting that the beautiful game is open to all. Surely if 2020 has taught us anything it is to care for everyone, and football can play a leading role in that.
The Hull City programme is available to buy at the ground on the day of the game and can also be downloaded from www.matchdayfix.com/oufc