TV Presenter & Cambridge United fan Max Rushden gives an exclusive interview with Doncaster Rovers ahead of this weekend’s FA Cup tie.Former Soccer AM presenter and Cambridge United fan Max Rushden has spoken exclusively to Doncaster Rovers as we take on the U’s this weekend in the FA Cup second round.
Having presented the popular Saturday morning Sky Sports show Soccer AM for a number of years, Rushden is now on Fantasy Football Club on Sky Sports as well as a TalkSport presenter. Growing up as a Cambridge United supporter, Max shares with us his favourite U’s memories, whether he’s ever cried at a football match, what he thinks of their chances this season and what he knows about Doncaster Rovers…
Full Name: Max Paul Rushden
How long have you been a Cambridge fan?
First game - a 2-2 draw with Exeter in 1986, so 30 years... I feel old.
Where do you sit / stand at games?
I was in the Junior U's enclosure for the first 10 years, then matured into the Newmarket Road End; about half way back, in the middle, just on the left - next to a lot of people in leather jackets up to around 2005. Now when I go I sit with my Dad in the main stand - but I've play Saturdays in London for the last decade, so my trips to the U's are more sporadic.
Favourite ever CUFC game?
There's a few. Arsenal away in the '91 FA Cup 1/4 final, it was a 2-1 defeat against the champions, Dion's header.
A 3-3 draw at Nottingham Forest in the League Cup. Taking them to penalties (and losing) after being 3-0 down. I couldn't watch Shaggy's penalty.
Less famous games - a 0-0 draw at home to Cardiff where David Ellary sent three players off, one for deliberate handball on the line, and we still didn't win!
And a 1-0 win home to Port Vale. Gary Rowett scored in the 90th minute, in the snow with an orange ball. Glorious.
What game did you lose that you thought you would win?
I never think we'll win, ever. So I'm always surprised!
Have you ever cried over football? When? For how long?
I haven't cried since West Ham beat us and we went down from the old 2nd Division (now Championship). I did have a lump in my throat at the end when we held Manchester United last year in the 3rd Round. Now I cry at romantic comedies.
Did you ever consider getting your hair shaved into a checkered pattern like Dion Dublin?
Dublin or Claridge?
Cheetham. (But I love each and everyone of that squad)
What one rule would you change in football?
A real fit and proper persons test.
Maximum two term FIFA presidency.
You can appeal a yellow card.
Retrospective bans for Diving.
Life bans for anyone who shouts "all day" on an amateur football pitch.
Have you ever been Mis-sold PPI?
Under new manager Shaun Derry, what has impressed you the most?
The last two victories. Shaun is a really good bloke, he was on The Fantasy Football Club a couple of weeks before he got the job, and it seems like a really good fit to me. He'll give it everything. And it's refreshing to get a young manager with top level playing experience, as opposed to the merry go round of identikit middle made for league 2 managers we could have got
Where do you think Cambridge will finish?
Last play-off spot after an unbeaten last two months, promotion, Prem by 2018
Have you ever been injured at work in an accident that's not your fault?
No, but I dented a lot of BBC Radio Cars when I worked for them and they were all entirely my fault. And yesterday I broke a wine glass taking it out of the dishwasher too enthusiastically.
What was the last thing you took a picture of?
A Scottish man called Kevin.
What do you know about Doncaster Rovers?
Billy Sharp, James Coppinger, that time you signed Diouf and Chimbonda, that brilliant highlights video of a 0-0 draw last year - It was great.
If you had to make up a fact about Doncaster what would it be?
Not made up, real. Years ago I was waiting for a tube and I saw an advert for Doncaster as a holiday destination. The tag line was "Doncaster: A City in all but name". I'm afraid it didn't entice me, although my sister lived there for a bit, so I've been there a couple of times.
Williamson recently scored against Notts County after the ball was booted against the back of his head. Have you ever scored off an unusual body part?
No, but I have had a player put his finger's up my bottom. That was unusual.
Where will you watch the game from?
15th in League One vs 14th in League Two. I can't believe it's not a TV game. I'll have just finished on Talksport, so there's a high chance I'll be in an artisan cafe in East London with a ham and cheese croissant with my girlfriend staring at twitter.
What's your prediction?
I'll take a point.
Who do you want in the next round if you win?
Liverpool away. I think we're well suited to play against the Geggenpress!
Who do you want Donny to get if they win?
Will you be sad if I say I'd be completely indifferent? But I hope you have a lovely time.
Watch us in FA Cup action against Cambridge this Sunday, buy your tickets online by clicking below: