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History | Fixtures 1885-2016 | Honours | Records | Colours | Where Are They Now? | Programmes | Miscellaneous | Latest Articles
TOP 10 GOALKEPERS CLEAN SHEET RECORDS

John Danby smashed the record for games without conceding a goal by keeping a clean sheet for eight first team fixtures in succession for Chester FC in 2011. Grenville Millington holds the overall record for the old club while Ronnie Sinclair kept all his clean sheets in Football League games. Wayne Brown and Bobby Jones are the only goalkeepers to feature twice. Adam Judge lies just outside the top ten after keeping four clean sheets in Chester FC’s inaugural season.

JOHN DANBY 2011/12 Total 781 minutes
Aug 29 Nantwich Town
(A)
Evo-Stik Premier
L
1-4
6 mins
Sep 3 North Ferriby United
(H)
Evo-Stik Premier
W
6-0
90 mins
Sep 7 Ashton United
(A)
Evo-Stik Premier
W
2-0
90 mins
Sep 10 Worksop Town
(A)
Evo-Stik Premier
W
3-0
90 mins
Sep 14 Kendal Town
(H)
Evo-Stik Premier
W
4-0
90 mins
Sep 20 Hyde
(A)
Cheshire Senior Cup 1
W
2-0
90 mins
Sep 24 Stafford Rangers
(A)
Evo-Stik Premier
W
3-0
90 mins
Sep 28 Chorley
(H)
Evo-Stik Premier
W
3-0
90 mins
Oct 8 Chasetown
(H)
Evo-Stik Premier
W
1-0
90 mins
Oct 12 Buxton
(A)
Evo-Stik Premier
D
1-1
55 mins

John Danby joined Chester FC in summer 2011 having previously played for Chester City between 2006 and 2010 when he also set a club record by playing in 133 consecutive games. This is the only entry when the club won all the completed games in the run and includes a victory in the Cheshire Senior Cup over Blue Square North side Hyde. The defence for these ten games comprised of centre backs George Horan and Michael Taylor supported by full backs Liam Brownhill and Matt McGinn. Wes Baynes replaced McGinn for three of the games.

GRENVILLE MILLINGTON 1974/75 Total 590 minutes
Sep 17 Shrewsbury Town
(A)
Division Four
L
0-2
33 mins
Sep 21 Torquay United
(H)
Division Four
W
3-0
90 mins
Sep 25 Reading
(H)
Division Four
W
2-0
90 mins
Sep 27 Mansfield Town
(A)
Division Four
D
0-0
90 mins
Oct 2 Doncaster Rovers
(H)
Division Four
W
3-0
90 mins
Oct 5 Scunthorpe United
(H)
Division Four
W
1-0
90 mins
Oct 9 Preston North End
(H)
League Cup Rd3
W
1-0
90 mins
Oct 11 Southport
(A)
Division Four
L
0-2
17 mins

During the 1974/75 season Sealand Road was virtually impregnable with only nine goals conceded at home during the whole season. In addition both Leeds United and Newcastle United failed to find a way past one of the club's best ever defences. Nigel Edwards, Tony Loska, Trevor Storton and Reg Matthewson played in every game in this sequence but Chris Dunleavy broke his leg in the Torquay United game and was subsequently replaced by Stuart Mason. This run also included victory over Third Division Preston North End in the League Cup.

RONNIE SINCLAIR 1996/97 Total 544 minutes
Feb 1 Hull City
(A)
Division Three
L
0-1
13 mins
Feb 4 Mansfield Town
(H)
Division Three
W
2-0
90 mins
Feb 8 Doncaster Rovers
(H)
Division Three
W
6-0
90 mins
Feb 14 Colchester United
(A)
Division Three
D
0-0
90 mins
Feb 18 Scunthorpe United
(A)
Division Three
W
2-0
90 mins
Feb 22 Mansfield Town
(H)
Division Three
W
1-0
90 mins
Feb 25 Carlisle United
(H)
Division Three
D
1-1
81 mins

Scotsman Ronnie Sinclair joined Chester from Stoke City in 1996 and played 70 league games for the club in two seasons. Not the tallest of keepers he was well-respected at the Deva and won the Player of the Season award as Chester reached the Third Division play-offs in 1996/97. Victory over Mansfield Town marked the beginning of a twelve match unbeaten run after five games without a win. Once again Ronnie was supported by a stable back four of Ross Davidson, Iain Jenkins, Peter Jackson and Julian Alsford with Spencer Whelan appearing at full back in two of the games.

WAYNE BROWN 2001/02 and 2002/03 Total 530 minutes
Apr 27 Dagenham & Redbridge
(A)
Conference
L
0-3
4 mins
Aug 17 Kettering Town
(H)
Conference
D
0-0
90 mins
Aug 19 Telford United
(A)
Conference
W
1-0
90 mins
Aug 24 Barnet
(A)
Conference
W
3-0
90 mins
Aug 26 Scarborough
(H)
Conference
D
0-0
90 mins
Aug 31 Forest Green Rovers
(A)
Conference
W
2-0
90 mins
Sep 3 Morecambe
(H)
Conference
W
2-1
76 mins

The only top ten entry to stretch over two seasons as Chester played the last four minutes at Dagenham without conceding a goal. A completely revamped defence started the 2002/03 season and created a club record with the best ever defensive start to a season. It was the sixth game before City conceded a goal with Kevin McIntyre, Scott Guyett and Wayne Hatswell ever present. Carl Ruffer and Lee Woodyatt also played in the back four in this sequence and the team went on to keep 19 clean sheets as they reached the Conference play-offs.

GEORGE SCALES 1946/47 Total 513 minutes
Oct 5 Hartlepools United
(H)
Division Three N
W
2-1
35 mins
Oct 12 Crewe Alexandra
(A)
Division Three N
W
2-0
90 mins
Oct 26 Stockport County
(A)
Division Three N
W
3-0
90 mins
Nov 2 Oldham Athletic
(H)
Division Three N
W
2-0
90 mins
Nov 9 Bradford City
(A)
Division Three N
D
0-0
90 mins
Nov 16 Barrow
(H)
Division Three N
W
3-0
90 mins
Nov 23 Accrington Stanley
(A)
Division Three N
W
4-1
28 mins

George Scales was Chester's first regular post-war goalkeeper and played 81 league games before joining Rhyl in September 1949. In the 1946/47 season Chester finished third in Division Three North and this set of results appeared in an impressive sequence of 14 wins and 2 draws in 16 games. Once again there was consistency in defence with Dave McNeil, Frank Marsh, Eric Lee and Trevor Walters appearing in all seven games while Reg Butcher secured the right back position for the Stockport game after earlier appearances by Johnny Mills and George Summerbee.

WAYNE BROWN 2001/02 Total 482 minutes
Jan 12 Stourport Swifts
(H)
FA Trophy Rd3
D
1-1
15 mins
Jan 15 Stourport Swifts
(A)
FA Trophy Rd3r
W
3-0
90 mins
Jan 19 Barnet
(H)
Conference
W
1-0
90 mins
Jan 22 Telford United
(A)
Conference
W
3-0
90 mins
Feb 2 Solihull Borough
(H)
FA Trophy Rd4
D
0-0
90 mins
Feb 9 Margate
(A)
Conference
D
0-0
90 mins
Feb 12 Solihull Borough
(A)
FA Trophy Rd4r
W
4-2
17 mins

Wayne Brown’s second entry in the top ten as improved defensive performances coincided with the arrival of Mark Wright as manager. This series of results heralded another good unbeaten run which went on to reach twelve games. Unlike the other top ten entries there were a number of different players involved in this series and only Martyn Lancaster started in defence in all seven games. Wayne Brown is the only keeper besides Bobby Jones to feature twice in the top ten.

DAVID FELGATE 1993/94 Total 464 minutes
Oct 30 Torquay United
(H)
Division Three
D
1-1
44 mins
Nov 2 Bury
(H)
Division Three
W
3-0
90 mins
Nov 6 Hereford United
(A)
Division Three
W
5-0
90 mins
Nov 13 Bradford City
(A)
FA Cup Rd1
D
0-0
90 mins
Nov 20 Northampton Town
(H)
Division Three
W
1-0
90 mins
Nov 27 Crewe Alexandra
(A)
Division Three
L
1-2
60 mins

David Felgate joined Chester from Wolves after Billy Stewart's injury at Scarborough in September 1993 and was a member of the team that won promotion to Division Two in 1994. This series of results included an impressive draw at Second Division Bradford City in the FA Cup. Roger Preece, Joe Jakub, Iain Jenkins and Colin Greenall apppeared in all six games while Spencer Whelan and Mark Came shared the centre-half berth. Impressively, this means that Iain Jenkins has appeared in three of the top five performances

BOBBY JONES 1954/55 Total 431 minutes
Apr 11 Rochdale
(A)
Division Three N
L
0-2
38 mins
Apr 13 Cardiff City
(H)
Welsh Cup SF
W
2-0
90 mins
Apr 16 Oldham Athletic
(H)
Division Three N
D
0-0
90 mins
Apr 20 Southport
(H)
Division Three N
D
0-0
90 mins
Apr 23 Bradford City
(A)
Division Three N
D
0-0
90 mins
Apr 30 Barnsley
(H)
Division Three N
L
0-2
33 mins

Perhaps the most surprising entry in the top ten. Chester finished bottom of Division Three North in 1954/55 and were in the middle of a run which saw them without a league victory in the last eleven games. However the Welsh Cup semi-final victory over Cardiff City was over a club two divisions above them. Bobby Jones was a promising young keeper who made 166 league appearances for Chester before playing First Division football with Blackburn Rovers. The defence for this sequence was John Molyneux, Ray Gill, Ronnie Hughes, Sam Morris and Phil Whitlock although Tommy Astbury played at half back in the Rochdale game.

BOBBY JONES 1955/56 Total 427 minutes
Aug 27 Southport
(A)
Division Three N
L
0-1
30 mins
Aug 31 Grimsby Town
(H)
Division Three N
W
2-0
90 mins
Sep 3 Gateshead
(H)
Division Three N
W
3-0
90 mins
Sep 7 Bradford PA
(H)
Division Three N
D
0-0
90 mins
Sep 10 Darlington
(A)
Division Three N
W
1-0
90 mins
Sep 12 Bradford PA
(A)
Division Three N
D
1-1
37 mins

Chester started the 1955/56 season in atrocious form and were lucky to only concede one goal at Southport in the first game of this sequence. However September and October marked an improvement in form and they only lost two league games out of fourteen. The defence remained much the same as the one that featured in 1954/55 with Harry Smith and Eric Lee replacing Molyneux and Morris.

DAVID KAYE / JOHN BUTCHER 1985/86 Total 423 minutes
Aug 31 Tranmere Rovers
(A)
Division Four
W
3-2
10 mins
Sep 4 Tranmere Rovers
(H)
Milk Cup 1R1
D
0-0
90 mins
Sep 7 Hereford United
(H)
Division Four
W
1-0
90 mins
Sep 14 Torquay United
(A)
Division Four
W
3-0
90 mins
Sep 21 Crewe Alexandra
(H)
Division Four
W
4-0
90 mins
Sep 25 Coventry City
(H)
Milk Cup 2R2
L
1-2
53 mins

The only entry in the top ten that features two different goalkeepers. David Kaye played in the first game against Tranmere Rovers but was then replaced by former Oxford United keeper John Butcher. Chester won promotion in 1985/86 and it took a goal from First Division Coventry City in the Milk Cup to break this sequence. Martin Lane, David Glenn, Wakeley Gage and Bobby Coy played in all six games while Andy Holden and Ricky Greenhough also featured.

Finally honourable mentions for Billy Stewart (412 minutes in 1988/89), Adam Judge (406 minutes in 2010/11), Gordon Livsey (404 minutes in 1971/72), Dennis Reeves (399 minutes in 1963/64), Pugh (393 minutes in 1920/21) and Casey (391 minutes in 1921/22). All six kept a clean sheet in four successive games.

Chas Sumner [October 2011]

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