ASK STATMAN 31

On a statistically notable 11/11/11 day, Chelsea's club statistician Paul Dutton tackles another set of number-related questions sent in by supporters…

I am going to begin this time with a topical question has been sent in by Austine from Nigeria. The fact that last weekend's result against Blackburn was the first 1-0 win of the season did not go unnoticed and Austine points to a reduced frequency in this particular scoreline in recent times, and asks what the seasonal totals of 1-0s have been since the Mourinho era.

Dealing in league results only as those are more comparable between seasons, the figures are as follows.

In 2007/08 Chelsea recorded nine 1-0 wins.

In 2008/09 there were five 1-0s.

In 2009/10 there were two 1-0s.

In 2010/11 there were three 1-0s.

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Another question that is topical with today being Armistice Day comes from Osaze Osas who asks how many years Chelsea players have been wearing red poppies embroidered on their shirts, as we did for the visit of Arsenal in our most recent home game.

The first year was 2009 for a match against Manchester United which ended in a 1-0 victory for the Blues. Last season we wore them for the home game against Sunderland, a defeat on that occasion.

Lampard

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Vic Newberry wants some stats on some of our most prolific penalty takers - Frank Lampard, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink and Frank Leboeuf from recent times, and Peter Sillett, the man who thumped in some vital spot kicks in our first championship-winning season in 1954/55.

Not including penalties taken in shoot-outs, here are those players success rates:

Lampard has scored 38 out of 43 penalties taken for Chelsea.

Hasselbaink had a 100 per cent record - 12 scored from 12 taken.

Leboeuf netted 15 from 17.

Sillett (pictured below) scored 19 from 24.

Peter Sillett

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I must say a big thanks for the response to a request for help with a Micky Droy (pictured top left) wonder goal question. In the last Ask Statman, we began the quest to pinpoint the game when our man-mountain of a central defender dribbled from his own penalty area, up the pitch to score. I suggested from my memory that it could have been in Micky's own testimonial match in November 1983 against Arsenal.

Hugh Hastings, the club photographer and programme editor at the time has been in contact to back my memory on that goal. But it could be the case that there were two memorable goals scored by Droy because Mike Mears, who sent in the original email, suggested it came in a League Cup game and David Austin has now emailed to say he thinks the goal was against Cardiff City in that competition on 3 September 1980.

He remembers Droy running a distance of at least 60 yards whilst jinking past numerous Cardiff players before rounding the keeper at the north end of Stamford Bridge. David adds that we ultimately lost the tie due to yet another goal from Peter Kitchen who had a knack of scoring against us.

It's a view of events that has been backed up by Martin and by Neil Smith who also points out that Droy finished his goal like Peter Osgood.

Alan Doyle puts forward an earlier League Cup game as a possibility, against Plymouth in September 1979 at the Bridge, but I don't think that can be the one as although Droy scored in that game, the records shows it was a header from a John Sparrow cross.

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On with the Droy questions and Leigh Reeder asks if he and 'Big' Doug Rougvie (pictured below), who signed from Aberdeen in 1984 and played left-back or centre-back for the Blues, ever featured in the same team together.

Just once did that imposing physical sight occur - on 16 February 1985. Rougvie started the match and Droy came on as substitute and they kept a clean sheet as we beat Newcastle 1-0 at home.

Rougvie

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Following the success of readers providing information for the first Droy question, I want to appeal for help with another query that I do not have the answer for.

Kev Hennessy writes that he grew up a stone's throw from one of Chelsea's old training grounds which was situated in Mitcham, south London.

Kev says that he knows we sold the ground on to Crystal Palace in 1976 but asks how long had Chelsea been there.

We have had other training grounds in the time between Mitcham and Cobham - at East Molesey and Harlington, and I know that our youth team stayed on training at Hendon after the first team moved to Mitcham, but I don't have a date for that arrival there. So does anyone reading this know please?

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Speaking of Chelsea v Cardiff games as we were with the Droy goal, Jon Gordon wants to know about the a meeting between the two sides much further back, on 1 April 1961 to be precise. It was his first game and a good way to start as it was a 6-1 win.

The request is for more details, so the team that day was:

Peter Bonetti, John Sillett, Peter Sillett; Terry Venables, Mel Scott,Sylvan Anderton; Frank Blunstone, Jimmy Greaves, Ron Tindall, Bobby Tambling, Mike Harrison.

The scorers were Harrison, Greaves, Tambling, Tindall with two goals and an own goal. A crowd of 22,697 watched the game.

Someone else who wants a team line-up is Rich Pullen who is after the names that contested a 1995 pre-season friendly against Bristol City.

It was a summer when excitement was high as we had just signed Ruud Gullit and the full team for that game on 6 August was:

Dmitri Kharine (Kevin Hitchcock); Frank Sinclair, Ruud Gullit, Erland Johnsen, Steve Clarke, Gavin Peacock, Nigel Spackman, Dennis Wise, Scott Minto (Andy Myers), John Spencer, Mark Hughes.

It was a 1-1 draw with Spencer the scorer.

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Keeping a pre-season theme going, Peter McBride is trying to find out the very first game that Pierluigi Casiraghi played in a Chelsea career that was unfortunately cut very short by injury.

He thinks it was the pre-season friendly against Kingstonian on 18 July 1998 but wants confirmation, which I can supply because it was that game.

Chelsea won 2-0 with the Italian striker playing the first half. His competitive debut came away against Coventry the following month.

Matches at non-league Kingstonian, who hosted our reserve matches at the time, regularly began our pre-season in that era.

Fast-forwarding to pre-season 2010, Frank Englefield asks for attendances for our 2010 friendlies. Such information is in the Chelsea Yearbook which is now available and for those games, the crowds were:

17 July v Crystal Palace - 21,345

23 July v Ajax - 21,666

1 Aug v Eintracht Frankfurt - 43,600

4 Aug v Hamburg - 47,440

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The Casiraghi question was about a player's first game and supporter Gerry McMahon wants me to help trace his first game as a member of the crowd. All he can remember is that it was Chelsea v Arsenal in the early 1970s, we lost and Gerry was disappointed that Peter Bonetti wasn't playing.

Given that information, I can only narrow it down to two games as both had John Phillips, Bonetti's understudy at the time, in goal.

One possible was in January 1973 when we lost 1-0. The other was in April 1974, a 3-1 defeat that time. Both were league games.

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Rounding up a few questions that require short answers, Dan Rhodes asks who is Chelsea's highest appearance maker in the Champions League.

As it stands after the away game at Genk and including only games in the Champions League proper, not qualifiers, the top three are:

Frank Lampard has 75 starts plus an additional five sub appearances. John Terry has 78 appearances, all starts, and Petr Cech has 66 appearances.

olalekanalabi wishes to know how many years Gianfranco Zola spent at Chelsea and what he won here.

Having arrived in November 1996, by the time he left in July 2003 the Sardinian star had to his name two FA Cups, one European Cup Winners' Cup, one League Cup, one European Super Cup, one Charity Shield, one Footballer of the Year award and one Chelsea Player of the Year award.

Kenneth Kakiiza emails from Uganda to ask when was the last time Chelsea started a game with ascending shirt numbers 1 to 11. He points out that looking at the current squad numbers, it is a real possibility this season.

If it does happen then it will be the first time in nearly 20 years as we have not seen it since fixed squad numbers for players were introduced at the start of the 1993/94 season.

The last time we had numbers 1 to 11 on the pitch at kick-off was in May 1992 versus Sheffield United away.

John Barrett is interested to know if any referee has managed to exceed Chris Foy's nine red or yellow cards shown to Chelsea in the recent game against QPR.

It was the most cards given to any side since the Premier League started in 1992.

Ahmad Hussain Abubakar from Nigeria asks if Chelsea have had any players from his country other than Celestine Babayaro and John Mikel Obi. We haven't.

He also asks when our Nigerian current sporting director Michael Emenalo joined the club. Emenalo was originally appointed head opposition scout in October 2007.

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Statman continues to be nothing if not topical this time as the subject of Petr Cech head injuries is raised by Ken Stratford.

Thankfully the one suffered by our keeper last weekend was nothing like as serious as the one inflicted at Reading back in 2006 and with Carlo Cudicini also being knocked out in the same game, Ken asks if another team then lent us a goalie.

The answer is we didn't loan a player of another club but we were able sign former Celtic keeper Magnus Hedman (pictured below) as cover until the end of that season as he was a free agent, but he never played.

Hedman

Henrique Hilario was the man who took over between the posts with the other two out of action and Yves Ma Kalambay was the keeper on the bench for three games after the Reading one until Cudicini could return as the sub keeper.Ma Kalambay was a youth and reserve team keeper who went on to played for Hibernian and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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The email that travelled the furthest to make it into this Ask Statman comes from Geoff Yates who lives in Sydney, Australia.

Geoff returns to a story we have covered before - a dramatic derby against West Ham back in that famous year of 1966 that ended 5-5.

He recalls Peter Bonetti making a wonder save on the six-yard line from a full volley from Martin Peters and that one Sunday newspaper headline referred to it as a 10-goal thriller and one wonder save.

Geoff wants confirmation that Bobby Tambling scored his 128th and 129th Chelsea goals to equal and then become our all-time top scorer during the game.

That is almost correct. He overtook Roy Bentley's then record total of 128 league goals, rather than goals in all competition.

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Happily, relegation is not a fate we have had to contemplate at Chelsea for many years now but that can't be said for past generations of our players.

Robert J. Bell, a Redcar Blue, asks if Steve Wicks (pictured top right), another of our central defenders from the 1970s and 1980s (Micky Droy having already starred in this Ask Statman), is the only player to be relegated twice in a Chelsea shirt.

I can tell Robert that is far from the case. There are plenty of players with the dubious honour and indeed those greatest servants of all in terms of games played, Ron Harris and Peter Bonetti, were both relegated three times - in 1962, 1975 and 1979.

There were several players who went down in '75 and '79. Wicks did in '75 and '88.

Robert did speculate that John Bumstead could be added to the two-relegations list and Bumstead was indeed a young player in'79 and in '88.


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I received some other follow-up emails concerning questions and answers in the last Ask Statman, and I am always grateful for those.

I counted up Ron Harris's Chelsea goals last time and Nico from Cyprus suggests I should add one more from a home game against FC Bruges. However a check on that shows that he didn't score in the match, although he did hit a post from 30 yards.

Last time we were investigating whether someone called Kurt Reynolds ever played for Chelsea. I decided not as the name did not appear in my records for any level of Chelsea's games. Peter Wollaston advises that a player called K. Reynolds made one appearance for the youth team on 5 March 1966 against Bexley United.

I am thankful for that info but as the Kurt Reynolds mentioned was 23 years of age at the time of the last Ask Statman, according to an interview he had given, it can't be the same person.

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Chris Gill's first game was as a six-year-old in 1971. What he is not certain about is the opposition although he thinks it was Bolton.

I'm not sure it can be. We didn't play Bolton in the league between the 1963/64 and 1975/76 seasons.

We did play a Bolton side managed by Jimmy Armfield in 1971/72 in the League Cup. We drew 1-1, Alan Hudson scored, and we went on to win replay 6-0 at Burnden Park. But would a six-year-old have been at a midweek evening game? Chris will have to provide the answer to that.

And there I am going draw a line under it for this Ask Statman, despite having a few more 'first game' and indeed other questions sent in for which there is not space to answer them this time. Apologies for that I will endeavour to deal with them next time.

Please keep the emails with questions, answers, comments and corrections coming to statman@chelseafc.com