features, geeky stat things

Goal Scoring by Numbers – part two

The bored amongst you will have noted our Wednesday stat fest which was Goal Scoring by Numbers, a look at how Rovers’ goals had been spread amongst the club’s squad numbers since saying goodbye to shirts numbered 1-11 in 2002. In that piece we brought you a substantial table showing the total goals per shirt number and an additional of who contributed what in the top XI shirts for goals.

Well today we conclude that piece with a look at the other shirt numbers, and which wearers of those numbers found the net as we break down the remaining 22 scoring Rovers’ squad numbers;

12th. Number 10; 21 goals

The traditional striker’s number occupies a distinctly low position on the Rovers’ Squad Number scoring charts thanks to a succession of unsuccessful occupants. Indeed, were it not for Billy Sharp’s 16 goals this season Number 10 would be way down the list; with the first eight seasons of wear bringing just 5 goals.

Non-scoring wearers: 2. Alun Armstrong and John Spicer

13th. Number 15; 19 goals

The final Conference season was the Number 15 shirt’s most prolific as Robert Gill often got the nod over Justin Jackson to partner Paul Barnes in a promotion-winning attack, scoring 10 goals in the process. Centre-back Nick Fenton’s contribution was surprisingly high whilst Mark Wilson, though not an accomplished goalscorer, has struck all three of his goals from outside the box, most notably his winner against Derby at the Keepmoat in Rovers’ first Championship season.

14th. Number 11; 18 goals

Each incumbent of the Rovers’ number 11 shirt has found the net since the introduction of squad numbers with it’s first wearer the most prolific. Midfielder Jamie Paterson struck seven times in Rovers promotion-winning Conference season of 2002-03, memorably scoring live on S*y on an oddly televised Sunday evening game with Woking. Though his impact was curtailed by serious injury Jermaine McSporran’s two Rovers goals were absolute belters, a stunning volley in a League Cup upset over Ipswich at Belle Vue and the telling touch in a sweeping passing move at Oldham. Adam Lockwood’s headed goals from set-pieces have kept the 11 shirt in the goals, despite it being worn by a centre-back.

14th. Number 17; 18 goals

Though its first two scorers failed to find the net the contributions of Jonathan Forte and Martin Woods ensure that the Number 17 shirt shares 14th place in the table. Ryan Mason came close to adding to its tally on several occasions this season, but sadly fell short of doing so.

Non-scoring wearers; Kevin Sandwith, Chris Beech, Ryan Mason

16th. Number 3; 15 goals.

Left-backs with a penchant for the spectacular goal have helped edge the number 3 shirt up into 16th place. Tim Ryan set the ball hurtling with long-range thunderbolts against Cambridge, Mansfield and Blackpool, a baton subsequently picked up by Gareth Roberts. The Welshman’s stunning volleys against Watford and Peterborough last season typical of his ability. George Friend’s scrambled equaliser at Vicarage Road made-up for in relief what it lacked in token number 3 sensationalism.

 17th. Number 4; 13 goals

Traditionally a centre-back’s number at Rovers, the number 4 shirt has brought at least a goal for everyone who’s worn it. David Morley set the benchmark with six goals in the final Conference season, including the second goal in the Play-Off Final at Stoke. The one non-defender to wear the shirt Jordan Mutch can claim it’s most spectacular goal courtesy of his long-range consolation strike against Middlesbrough last season.

17th Number 30; 13 goals

The number 30 shirt at Rovers has been worn by five players, but one man’s goals stand out against the others; New Zealand full-back David Mulligan. A free-kick expert Mulligan curled in glorious dead-ball goals at Hull and twice in an FA Cup match at Boston amongst others.

Non-scoring wearers; 2. Matt Noble and Paul Keegan

19th. Number 22; 12 goals

Despite being a goalkeeper’s number for many seasons at Doncaster the 22 shirt has still managed to contribute a dozen goals, most from the boot of attacking midfielder Dean Shiels. The Northern Irishman’s purple patch coming midway through the 2009-10 season when he scored some notable goals including a well-worked team effort against Watford.

Non-scoring wearers; 8 ALan Morgan, Keith Foy, Jon Maloney, Tony Nielsen, John Filan, Neil Sullivan, John-Paul Pittman, Kyle Letheren

20th. Number 13; 11 goals

Also predominantly a goalkeeper’s shirt Number 13 has only ever had one outfield wearer and it was he who struck all 11 of it’s goals. Step forward Leo Fortune-West, he may have been more prolific in his first season with the club as 14, but in this shirt he hit arguably his finest goal, leathering a first time twenty-five yard strike against Port Vale in front of a stunned Belle Vue crowd.

Non-scoring wearers; 3 Stuart Nelson, Barry Richardson, Ben Smith

21st. Number 16; 9 goals

Worn by striker Tristan Whitman in the final Conference season the number 16 has brought just six goals since the club returned to the League, although they’ve been spread across five nationalities; Irish, Australian, English, Northern Irish and Welsh. No-one has struck as important a goal in 16 as Whitman’s injury time equaliser against Chester in the first leg of the Conference play-off semi-finals at Belle Vue.

Non-scoring wearers; Mark Wilson, Anthony Griffith, Adam Boyce

21st. Number 31; 9 goals

Used predominately by goalkeepers and loanees the number 31 has still produced 9 goals, with the majority scored by arguably the club’s most impressive showman of the last ten years; Jay Emmanuel-Thomas. JET’s thunderbolt against Derby last season was possibly the fiercest shot I’ve seen fired at goal since Tim Ryan left the club, the very definition of the word unstoppable.

Non-scoring wearers; Adam Collin, Lee Cockerham, Toni Ameobi, Simon Gillett, Jordan Bradshaw

23rd. Number 6; 7 goals

James Chambers’ three season goal drought mean that only two players have found the net in the number 6 shirt with all but one of it’s goals contributed by Mark ‘The Sarge’ Albrighton; the uncompromising centre-back scored in each of his first three seasons with the club making him one of few Rovers players to have found the net in three different divisions. Kevin Horlock was injured in the process of scoring his solitary strike for the club against Crewe and duly missed the next 18 months of action.

Non-scoring wearers; 1 James Chambers

23rd. Number 33; 7 goals

Another shirt number favoured by loanees until goalkeeper Gary Woods made it his last season, the majority of the goals struck in the number 33 shirt belong to Welsh forward Neil Roberts who joined the club in the 2004-05 season. The shirt’s most famous, and perhaps most ridiculous strike though is it’s one other belonging to Theo Streete, the swerving, dipping ambitious punt from in front of the Pop Side which was the last goal ever scored at Belle Vue.

Non-scoring wearers; 5 Mike Williamson, Uros Predic, Adam Brown, Alan Wright and Gary Woods

24th. Number 24; 6 goals

Not the luckiest shirt for goalscorers, with eight of the eleven who’ve worn the number 24 shirt failing to find the net. Of those who have scored Jonathan Forte’s four goals on his initial loan spell with the club are framed by centre-back’s; a header for Gordon Greer and Graeme Lee’s spectacular dipping-volley winner at Scunthorpe.

Non-scoring wearers; 8 Brian Quailey, Dene Shields, Tarkan Mustafa, Don Goodman, Rob O’Brien, Stuart Jones, Rob Pacey, Mustapha Dumbuya

25th. Number 27; 6 goals

Another number with decidedly more non-scoring wearers than scoring ones. Ross McCormack struck all but one of those scored as number 27, his long-range stunner at Hartlepool to secure a point probably the most keenly remembered by Rovers fans.

Non-scoring wearers; 7 Ben Muirhead, Ben Jackson, Chris Dickman, Sam Oji, Kaznega LuaLua, Jack Wilson, Matt Kilgallon

27th. Number 2; 5 goals.

Only two players have ever worn the Rovers’ number 2 shirt and only one has ever found the net, so no graph needed for James O’Connor‘s five goals. A feat the club’s other number 2, the impressive Simon Marples, could only ever dream of.

Non-scoring wearers; 1 Simon Marples

28th. Number 28; 3 goals

Like the Number 2 shirt only one player has ever found the net in the Number 28 shirt with the on loan Danny Hudson scoring all three of it’s goals in the club’s last non-league season, including a brace at Scarborough in the Cup. The shirt was retired after it’s only other wearer made his solitary appearance for the club, failing to get a touch let alone a goal; but then he is Chairman.

Non-scoring wearer: 1 John Ryan

29th. Number 18; 2 goals

Assigned to an outfield player in every season since squad numbers were adopted the number 18 shirt has still only produced two goals in all that time. The shot-shy but popular Sean McDaid finally finding the net against Swindon late in the 2007-08 season. Simon Gillett’s goal at ? this season represent it’s only other moment of glory.

Non-scoring wearer; 1. Jamie Price

29th. Number 29; 2 goals

Another graph-free number means that the number 29 shirts has also only ever known one goalscorer. Waide Fairhurst‘s back to back Championship strikes against West Brom and Ipswich last season representing all those scored by number 29.

Non-scoring wearers; Warren Peyton, Adam Brown, Craig Nelthorpe

29th. Number 32; 2 goals

There may only have ever been 2 goals scored by Rovers’ Number 32 but they remain telling and both were struck on debuts. Steve Brooker’s strike came in his 20 minute loan-spell to bring a vital much-needed point at Watford in Rovers’ first Championship season, whilst Elliot Ward’s remains perhaps the most incredible debut goal ever scored by a Rovers player, a thunderous bicycle-kick at Hillsbrough.

Non-scoring wearers; 3 Ross Flitney, Craig Nelthorpe, Chris Black

32nd Number 25; 1 goal

The least prolific of all Rovers’ shirt numbers is 25, without a goal since Steve Burton‘s header against Morecambe on Easter Monday 2003. Since then seven men have tried and failed to find the target as number 25.

Non-scoring wearers 7. Erdum Artun, Ben Saunders, Nic Priet, Michael Timlin, Liam Green, Stuart Elliott, Dennis Souza

32nd. Number 36; 1 goal

Danny Cadamateri can lay claim to being  the highest squad number to have scored for Rovers, his solitary strike toward the end of the 2006-07 season the club’s only goal by a number 36.

Non-scoring wearers; 4 Alan Blayney, Dino Seremet, Lee Cockerham, Brad Grayson

Goalless Numbers

Number 1; Andy Warrington, Neil Sullivan

Number 34; Michael Ingham, Iain Turner, Harry Worley, Robbie Clark

Number 35; Anthony Griffith, Barry Richardson, Charlie Fisher


About glen wilson

Former schoolboy, Glen Wilson writes on football and travel and has been editor of the award-winning popular STAND fanzine since before the award.


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