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York City's Keepers: Benched

In recent years, with a bench of subs, some City keepers never made it beyond the bench, other triallist keepers never earned a City contract
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Along the way, especially in later years when with multiple substitutes allowed, a team needed a competent keeper on the bench, City welcomed a host of trial and loan keepers. Many never got to grace the first team, some reached the bench but never progressed.

Step forward, Farhad Afandiyev, an Azerbaijan national who found his way to England where he was working in a Midlands leisure centre, offered a trial, he earned a short term contract under Billy McEwan.

Adam Bartlett, the out of contract Blyth keeper has an unsuccessful trial in 2007. He went on to play for in The Conference for Kidderminster and Cambridge and England C before moving up to The Football League with Hereford. 10 years later, he made his City debut

After playing briefly under Dolan in 2002/3 season, Marlon Beresford reported back for training in the summer of 2003 under Chris Brass. He was not offered a contract when a previous injury meant City were unable to insure him.

John Collinson, youth graduate had a squad number for 3 seasons before being released in 2003 without ever stepping onto the pitch.

Meanwhile, another youth product, Nick Culkin, did not even make it to the first team bench. He joined Manchester United for 100,000 (eventually 250,000 with add on clauses) in September 1995 as a 17 year old in the wake of our League Cup win over United. He went onto set the record for both the shortest ever Premiership and United careers, coming on as a sub, he took a goal kick as the referee blew for the final whistle, never again to appear on the pitch as a first teamer, although he won 2 Charity Shield medals from the bench. Injury forced his retirement from the professional game, but he was still playing non league football in 2012.

During the 2008/9 season, both Artur Krysiak and Jonathan McDonald, a youth graduate wore the Number One shirt. Ingham wore his usual 24 and Josh Mimms wore the usual second string keeper's Number 13 shirt.

Paddy Gamble (on loan from Nottingham Forest), Stephen Henderson (Bristol City loanee), Richard O'Donnell and Arron Jameson (Sheffield Wednesday loanees) and Carl Pentney (Leicester loanee) have all sat on the bench in recent years without pulling on their keeper gloves in anger. So do Simon Miotto, our 40 year Australian born goalkeeping coach towards the end of the 2009/10 season.

Neville Southall, signed in August 2000, a month short of his 42nd birthday, never featured in the first team. In December 2007, Southall recovered the medals and trophies he had previously given to his teenage daughter, following successful legal action through the Liverpool courts. The case left his daughter with a legal bill of 6,000

Paul Musselwhite was even older when he spent the 2011/2 season on the bench, being called into action for the last 3 league games of the season, keeping 3 clean sheets before reverting to the bench for the league play offs and both of our successful Wembley visits in May 2012.

PS Spare a thought for Mike Granger, some would say the second best ever keeper to play for City. He was with us between 1952 and 1962, 10 seasons and made just 71 appearances. That was in the days when there was no bench. Armed forces commitments and Tommy Forgan, many would say the best ever keeper to play for City, prevented the former Hong Kong player of the year from making many more appearances that his ability deserved.

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