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Stoke Keeper Makes History in 1952

On this day in Feb 16th 1952, Stoke City goal keeper Dennis Herod achieved among the bravest yet eccentric feats in English football. On this particular day in 1994, France overcome Italy 1-0 kick-starting a record 30-game unbeaten streak. Stoke travelled into Villa Park to play Aston Villa in a league tie at the front of 40,000 fans. The Potters were up within the first half an hour Stoke goal keeper Dennis Herod suffered an unjury leading to a broken arm since Villa pulled one goal back right. In an era were substitutes were a wounded player had two options continue with the game or get off the pitch if the injury is not so serious, an alien idea. Therefore Herod was left to the pitch for ‘nuisance value’. He continued playing in goal but had to make way for Sammy Smyth who left his own goalscoring duties to focus on goal keeping. Herod had been ordered to play on the wing. The goalkeeper was not deemed as a goal threat by the Villa defence and was left unmarked but Herod found himself one on one and set the ball in the back of the net to make it 3-1 to the Potters. Villa added another late however it was too little too late. Founded in Naples, this game has been Aime Jacquet’s very first game in charge of this French team. The last time France had beaten Italy in Italy was in 1912. But AS Monaco’s Youri Djorkaeff scored the only objective of the game as 1-0 winners ran out. This was the start of a unbeaten streak that stopped in a 1-0 defeat against Denmark in November.

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