There’s a pressure to win at Boston United, admits Sunderland keeper Joel Dixon

Joel Dixon.
Joel Dixon.

Joel Dixon was ecstatic to mark his Boston United debut with his first penalty save in senior football.

The on-loan 20-year-old guessed correctly as he dived to his right and palmed away Richie Allen’s stoppage-time spot kick on Saturday.

With United leading 3-1, a second AFC Fylde goal may not have changed the outcome.

However, Dixon’s heroics saved the Pilgrims some nervy moments late in the game.

“It was really loud, wasn’t it?” said Dixon, reflecting on the roar from the Town End behind him, which greeted his penalty stop.

“It was a really good feeling.

“I’ve saved a few penalties in friendlies and with the under 21s, but that was my first in senior football.”

Dixon actually signed as cover for the Pilgrims last season, but never got to take his place between the sticks.

But on Saturday he got his chance as the suspended Sam Vince watched from the stands.

As Dixon is just 20 years old, his initial stay with United is classed as work experience.

But when he turns 21 in early December, manager Dennis Greene is hoping to tie the player down on loan until the end of the season.

Dixon is no stranger to Conference North football, having spent two months on loan with Workington two seasons ago.

However, he admits that turning out for the Pilgrims is a different challenge.

“There’s a bigger crowd at Boston and it’s a different club,” he added.

“There’s pressure to win, rather than just getting points.”

Saturday’s Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal blanket collection at Boston United raised a total of £457.09.