Dirty Tackle

With both keepers unavailable, 57-year-old Non-League manager starts himself in goal

Brooks Peck
Dirty Tackle

John Dent (Penzance AFC)

Former Penzance goalkeeper John Dent just took over as manager of the South West Peninsula League Division One West club (the 11th tier of English football) at the start of September and already he's set a league record. The 57-year-old become the Peninsula League's oldest player ever when he started Penzance's match against Liverton Town last weekend because both of his goalkeepers were somehow unavailable.

Dent, who ended his playing career at the age of 43 in 1998, allowed four goals in the first half, but he kept Liverton from adding anymore in the second as Penzance made it a bit more respectable by scoring twice for a 4-2 final score.

From The Cornishman:

Dent made the decision to play on Friday evening after discovering the club's two regular goalkeepers, Paul Williams and Gavin Power, were unable to travel due to other commitments.

He said: "I spoke to our secretary (John Mead) on Friday and said that I'd play, but we'd have to keep it from my wife!

"It was funny, because on the way to the game one of our players, Luke Rudkin asked me if I'd ever played in goal before, which shows just how young some of these players are compared to me." [...]

"When Liverton went 4-0 up I thought 'what the hell am I doing?' but thankfully we were much better in the second half.

"Other commitments"? Oh, Non-League problems.

Dent says he won't be playing again, so I guess that means he'll be buying each of his keepers a day planner.

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