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FPA guests v Shrewsbury Town

6 May 2023

Club News

FPA guests v Shrewsbury Town

6 May 2023

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The FPA guests for Sunday’s fixture against Shrewsbury Town are Sam Ellis, Terry Cooper, Peter Grotier, Gavin Gordon, Tony Cunningham and John Hawley.

Sam Ellis

Sam Ellis was a centre-half and captain of City’s record-breaking 1975/76 team. Sam was voted the Supporters Player of the Season both in that campaign and in the following season when City were in the old Third Division. Sam was a key member of the team that Graham Taylor built and was important not only for his excellent defending but also for his ability to score goals both from open play and from the penalty spot. His final tally of 41 goals from 194 appearances is outstanding for a defender and in 1974/75 he finished as leading scorer with 15 league and cup goals. Sam began his career at Sheffield Wednesday playing for the Owls in the 1966 FA Cup final and winning England U23 caps while at Hillsborough. He moved on to Mansfield Town before signing for City in the summer of 1973. He left Lincoln in the summer of 1977 and followed Graham Taylor to Watford, helping his new team win the Fourth Division championship. Sam later managed Bury, Blackpool and the Imps and was a highly respected coach who worked for clubs including Manchester City, Leeds United, Burnley and Middlesbrough.

Debut vs Scunthorpe United, home 25 August 1973

Lincoln City record:

Football League 173 appearances, 33 goals

FA Cup: 13 appearances, four goals

Football League Cup: eight appearances, four goals

Peter Grotier

Peter Grotier was a goalkeeper who began his career with West Ham United before moving to Sincil Bank in August 1974, taking over the keeper’s shirt from John Kennedy who departed at the end of the 1973/74 season. It was initially a loan move but was quickly made permanent with the Imps’ supporters contributing towards what was then a club record transfer fee of £16,666. After making his debut against Chester, Peter went on to play in 134 consecutive Football League games for the Imps. He played in all 46 games of the 1975/76 season when the Imps not only won the Fourth Division title but set a number of records in doing so. He was voted Player of the Season in 1977/78 and remained at Sincil Bank until February 1980 before later playing for Cardiff and Grimsby. Peter is the only goalkeeper to have scored for the Imps in a competitive game netting three times from the penalty spot in Lincolnshire Cup games and also successfully taking a spot kick when City lost in a penalty shoot-out to Doncaster in a League Cup tie in 1976.

Debut vs. Chester, home 17 August 1974

Lincoln City record:

Football League: 233 appearances

FA Cup: 14 appearances

Football League Cup: 16 appearances

Terry Cooper

Terry Cooper initially signed for City in December 1971 on loan from Notts County. He went back to Meadow Lane after making three appearances for the Imps but made a permanent move to Sincil Bank in the summer of 1972. Terry, who started out playing in midfield, switched to central defence with great success and went on to play almost 300 first-team games for City. He was a key member of the 1975/76 team which won the Division Four championship and was twice voted Player of the Season by the supporters. Cooper left Sincil Bank in the summer of 1979 and later played for Bradford City and Rochdale.

Debut vs Stockport County home 18 December 1971

Lincoln City record:

Football League: 268 appearances plus two as substitute, 12 goals

FA Cup: 15 appearances plus one as substitute, one goal

Football League Cup: 13 appearances

Gavin Gordon

Gavin Gordon was a striker who signed for the Imps as an 18-year-old in November 1997 from Hull City. In his first season at Sincil Bank he helped City gain promotion from Division Three and continued to feature regularly in the team during his time with the club. In the first half of the 2000/01 he scored regularly and was leading scorer netting 10 goals before being sold to Cardiff City for a reported six-figure fee. Gavin, who had made his senior debut for Hull at the age of 16, later played for Notts County and Crawley Town. He is the chairman of Lincoln City Former Players Association.

Debut vs Swansea City away, 8 November 1997

Lincoln City record:

Football League: 87 appearances plus 12 as substitute, 28 goals

FA Cup: 9 appearances, two goals

Football League Cup: two appearances, one goal

Other: four appearances plus one as substitute

Tony Cunningham

Tony Cunningham was a big striker who signed for City from non-league club Stourbridge in May 1979 and made an instant impact. He made his debut in a League Cup tie against Barnsley when he was up against the former England defender Norman Hunter and not only scored but ran him ragged. Tony remained a regular first-team player during his three full seasons at Sincil Bank and finished as leading scorer with 15 league and cup goals in 1981/82 when the Imps narrowly missed out on promotion to second tier football. He was sold to Barnsley in September 1982 and later played for several clubs including Sheffield Wednesday, Manchester City and Newcastle United making a total of almost 500 senior appearances before ending his career with Wycombe Wanderers. 

Debut vs Barnsley, home (Football League Cup) 11 August 1979

Lincoln City record:

Football League: 111 appearances plus 12 as substitute, 32 goals

FA Cup: five appearances plus one as substitute

Football League Cup: 13 appearances, eight goals

Other games: six appearances, two goals

John Hawley 

John Hawley was a young professional with Lincoln City in the 1960s. He mainly appeared as a winger, playing for the reserves in the North Midlands League. He also made appearances for the A team in the Lincolnshire League and played in the FA Youth Cup for the Imps. Hawley moved on in the summer of 1968 and signed for Corby Town. He later played for several local clubs including Boston United and Worksop Town.

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