Saturday, January 21, 2012

21 January 1997 - Shilton Finally Stops

On 21 January 1997, goalkeeper Peter Shilton played in his last match, setting the current League record of 1,005 appearances.

Shilton, who set the England cap record at 125 seven years earlier, started his club career in 1966 with Leicester City, where he soon ousted England's World Cup-winning keeper Gordon Banks. He went on to make 286 appearances for Leicester before leaving for Stoke City in 1974. There, he added another 110 appearances to his total, then moved on to Nottingham Forest (202), Southampton (188), and Derby County (175).

By the time he left Derby in 1992, his career was in decline, but he made another 34 appearances in three seasons for Plymouth Argyle. Between 1994 and 1996, he spent brief periods with Wimbledon, Bolton Wanderers, West Ham, and Coventry, but played in only a single League match for the lot of them.

In 1996, he joined Leyton Orient, where he made his last nine appearances. The final one was a Division Three contest at home against Wigan, but it wasn't a storybook ending for the 47-year old Shilton. The hosts took a first half lead with a goal from Scott McGleish (33'), but surrendered late strikes to Ian Kilford (62') and Graeme Jones (77') to lose 1-2.

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