Culverhouse – this is simply the best!
- Credit: Archant
Ian Culverhouse says guiding King's Lynn Town to promotion is the biggest achievement of his footballing career.
Culverhouse was at Norwich City in the glory years of the inaugural Premier League and the famous 93-94 Uefa Cup campaign and then returned as assistant manager as the Canaries secured successive promotions to reach the top flight in 2011.
But guiding King's Lynn to a dramatic 3-2 extra-time 'super' final victory at Warrington on Saturday trumps the lot for the 54-year-old - because he led from the top.
"It is what I have always wanted - I always wanted to be a number one and this is by far the biggest achievement I have ever had in football," said Culverhouse in the aftermath of huge celebrations in the north-west.
"That is because your head is above the parapet. When we got promotion (at Norwich) they were magnificent promotions, they really were, and I will never ever forget them as long as I live, by my head was below the parapet. I can bark orders all I want and it is only for someone that is out there, but now I am the one who is out there and the buck stops with me."
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Culverhouse and almost 400 travelling fans had to survive some heart-stopping moments before victory was secured: Lynn took an early lead through Jordan Richards, but with just minutes remaining trailed 2-1, until leading scorer Adam Marriott coolly converted a penalty to send the match into extra-time.
It look destined to go to a penalty shoot-out before strike partner Michael Gash produced a piece of brilliance to fire Lynn ahead - and earn promotion to the National League North next season. Gash's strike sparked wild scenes on and off the pitch, but Culverhouse - usually the calmest man around - was almost oblivious to it all.
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"The reaction was unbelievable," he said. "But I didn't see it I'm afraid ... I was on my knees!
"But those two (Marriott and Gash) have led us all season. They have been absolutely magnificent, they all have. They have been magnificent to a man.
"They have done the town proud - I am so pleased for the supporters because they have turned up in their hundreds today and to share this with them as well - it will be a rowdy homecoming."