Season 7 Episode 1

Episode 293


Sky One Transmission Date:

Sunday 28th September 2003


Directed by

David Penn


GS: Christopher Hill (Jacob Lloyd)  Alison Hill (Keeley Mills)  David Douglas (Richard Derrington)  CID Officer 1 (David Cochran)

CID Officer 2 (Paul Johnston)  Mrs (Mandy) Connelly (Martine Brown)  Steve Johnson (Daniel Greene)  Peter Stringfellow (as himself)


Life-long Dragons fan Matt Webster is on holiday in Spain with his girlfriend Alison and her son Chris when he receives a call from Harchester United, telling him his seat has been reallocated for the rematch between Harchester and Everton, taking place the following day. Matt was not aware the rematch was happening before going on holiday and manages to get a flight home, but with only two tickets they leave an annoyed Alison behind in Spain. Despite a mad rush home, he and Chris end up arriving just as the game has finished. A disappointed Matt then bins his now invalid season ticket.



In Liverpool, Dean Boyle is celebrating his birthday, and will be heading to Harchester for the match with his father Tony, stepmother Karen and his girlfriend Donna (who is also Karen’s sister). They are Everton supporters, and once they arrive at the Dragons Lair Tony sends Dean to buy them their tickets. Dean approaches Steve, who is ticket-touting and sells him Clyde’s comps (given to him by Ryan), meaning that the Boyles have to sit in the home crowd with the Harchester fans. Harchester beat Everton and at the end of the match Phil reads out the winning seat number of the club’s new owner. Donna is sitting in the seat, and upon showing that they have his comps, Clyde steps in and declares that he should be the new owner. The Boyles refuse to back down, so it is decided the matter will be settled in court.


The players are in unrest over recent events, but Stuart assures them that things will be sorted and they should go on their holidays. Clyde and Mrs Connelly decide to launch an appeal to find the tout, much to the discomfort of Ryan, who’s later forced into offering Steve £25,000 to keep quiet. Meanwhile Donna, angered by Tony’s interference in her relationship with Dean, gets her revenge by going to the papers and revealing that the Boyles are in fact Everton supporters. This revelation worries Dream Inc. and they appoint the formally “proven liar” Pilar Hernandez as the club’s new Chief Executive, to run the club until the ownership battle is over.


Pilar offers Stuart the job of managing Harchester United permanently, to which he accepts; only under the condition that he lets her sell Fletch in order to bring in a new star striker - Luke Davenport. Pilar then burns the contract Phil promised Fletch. While both Clyde and the Boyles launch press stunts defending their claims, Matt is still unaware that he is a part of this, and is hurt when Alison returns home and leaves him, taking Chris with her. However, that weekend he is looking after Chris when he sees Donna’s story in the paper, and the picture of her with seat #61 – his seat. Realising what this could mean, he rushes outside to search the rubbish for his season ticket, which when found confirms what he thought, and he smiles.




·          First appearances of new regular characters Tony Boyle (Alan Stocks), Karen Boyle (Cheryl Mackie), Dean Boyle (Michael Ryan), Donna Gibb (Jo Goldie) and Matt Webster (James Daffern). Pilar Hernandez (Mareme Hernandez), last seen in 285: Show Me The Money is a permanent fixture in the series from this episode onwards. We see Number 23 for the first time in this episode, presently owned by Matt. This episode also marked the first time in Dream Team’s history where the opening episode of the new season continued from the same day that the previous season’s finale had ended on. It was a technique that was continued at the beginning of the shows’ two following seasons (325: Down and 357: Phoenix From The Flames).


Best Known For: Alan Stocks has 40+ acting credits, which included a regular role in “Wire In The Blood” airing alongside his DT stint in 2003. Cheryl Mackie played the regular role of Megan Brindley on “ Brookside” from 1998-1999. Michael Ryan appeared in “In His Life: The John Lennon Story” (2000) and had a memorable role on “Hollyoaks” in 2009 as Caleb Ramsey. James Daffern continues as a successful television actor and became well known from appearing in a Fiat Punto advert. Not to mention Abi’s old college mate Jimmy from #264: The Root Of All Evil. Keeley Mills had a big role on “Doctors” as Chloe Pearce (2004). Mareme Hernandez (nowadays credited as Marem Hassler) appeared in “Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life”, Lady Macbeth in stage versions of “Macbeth”, and became recognisable from a Ford Focus advert (“This is a maaaan’s world!”). Although she only appears as Clyde’s mom in this episode, Martine Brown played Juliette Benson on “Hollyoaks” from 1995-1998 and had a brief role on “ Coronation Street” (2000-2001).


·          The Best: Matt & co in Spain (always great when Dream Team goes on location). The casting for Matt, Alison and Chris - three West Midlands born actors who could pass for being lifelong Harchester residents. The “ 24” style shots of Matt and Chris on their way to the game whilst the Boyles watching Harchester and Everton plays at the same time. The A5 road sign with Harchester and Tamworth (two miles apart). Peter Stringfellow’s delight at Harchester’s survival. Clyde’s ‘Chairman Clyde’ printed t-shirt. Donna’s photoshoot (posing with seat #61 whilst supposedly naked behind a chair). The return of Pilar, and Nikki and Sandra’s faces upon learning of her new position at the club. Pilar’s pronunciation of “Stoo-art!” commencing.


Quotes: [Censored if viewing daytime repeat] Donna (on Marcel): “He’s got nice legs, not a bad arse either.”  Dean: “Who? Marcel Sabat-tty boy?” Donna: “He’s never gay! You can tell.”  Also a couple of gems from Clyde; (to the Boyles): “This is ridiculous yeah, I’ve just saved this club from relegation and they’re gonna be putting statues up of me!” and “Lads, you can take this from me yeah… all your contracts, are in the bag (turns to Curtis) apart from yours!”.  Mrs Connelly (on the Boyles having Clyde’s tickets): “Well those gypo-people got hold of ‘em somehow...”


·          Foreshadowing: The hatred between Tony and Donna is visible from their first scene, but the reasons behind it will not be revealed until 299: A Little Less Conversation. Donna mentioning that she and Dean could “fly to Las Vegas and get married in one of those Elvis chapels” is also a future reference to the same episode. Fletch, in every scene (and that’s not many) questioning the whereabouts of the contract Phil promised him (294: Long Live The King). We get the first glimpse of Luke Davenport (Neil Newbon) in this episode, hinting towards his arrival next episode.


Continuity: Nikki is told by two detectives how they have two suspects in custody for Doyle's murder. Pilar tells Stuart that Alan Rothman will not be returning. He and Jennifer leave Harchester off screen over the summer. Danny Rawsthorne is among the pictures of past and present HUFC players on Chris’ bedroom wall.


·          Additional Info: Simple: Skin Defence For Men sponsored Dream Team for this season. The man playing Clyde’s dad is a Dream Team extra who continues to appear in various positions throughout the rest of the series. Tony is a self employed builder and runs his own business ‘Boyles Builders’. Matt is a supply teacher and has been a Harchester United season ticket holder for eleven years. Despite saying she’d be around until Clyde sorted his ownership mess out, Mrs Connelly is gone by the next episode. Pilar fires David Douglas here, but he is back for the court case in 304: Judas.


Surprise!: The preview of a new Lynda appearance coming in the next episode.


·          Soundtrack: Athlete: “ El Salvador”, Benny Benassi: “Satisfaction”, Electric Six: “Dance Commander” and “Shes White”, Embrace: “Save Me”, Goldfrapp: “Strict Machine”, Groove Armada: “Suntoucher”, Rae & Christian: “Blazing The Crop”, Stereophonics: “I Miss You Now.”


Screencaps from Season 7’s last repeat broadcast on Sky One in autumn 2006.


Donna learns her seat has won

 There's no ticket for Alison!



Its war for Clyde and the Boyles

 Chairman Clyde!



Harchester fans all our lives!

 Donna always has her revenge



Stuart becomes manager... to the cost of Fletch


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