A safe pair of hands is vital - but who were the best goalies to ever walk out at Portman Road? 12 Days of Ipswich Town Christmas - top 10 goalkeepers

Laurie Sivell

Laurie Sivell

Who are Town’s top ten keepers? In the 11th of our Twelve Days of Ipswich Town Christmas series, Terry Hunt lists his top ten.

Neil Alexander

Scottish international who only stayed at Town for half a season before joining Glasgow Rangers, but made a great impression during his short time at Portman Road.

Roy Bailey

Bailey was apparently living in a caravan in Lewisham when Alf Ramsey signed him from Crystal Palace. He became one of the five Town players to win the Third, Second, and First division titles. His son, Gary, played in goal for Man Utd, and conceded six times at Portman Road in 1980.


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David Best

Best signed from Oldham in October 1968 for £25,000, and replaced Ken Hancock as first-choice keeper. Did a good job until the diminutive Sivell came along.

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Mick Burns

Not all that many Town fans will remember Burns, but he makes this list for two good reasons. Firstly, he was Town’s keeper in their very first league game in 1938. Secondly, he made his final appearance 13 years later, in 1951, at the grand old age of 43 years and 121 days.

Paul Cooper

Unheralded on his arrival from Birmingham in 1974, Cooper eventually displaced Laurie Sivell as first-choice keeper and established himself as one of the best in the land. Was unlucky to be playing in the same era as Shilton and Clemence, otherwise England caps would surely have come his way.

Kelvin Davis

After signing from Wimbledon, Davis proved himself one of Town’s best-ever keepers during two highly impressive seasons. We doubled our money when he went to Sunderland for £1.25m.

Craig Forrest

The Canadian played more than 300 games for Town, and was a key part of the 1992 promotion squad. Who can forget the tactic: Forrest long kick to the right wing, Whitton heads infield to Kiwomya, who scores! Forrest was unfortunate enough to be in goal when Town visited Old Trafford in 1995.

Ken Hancock

Hancock joined from Port Vale and replaced Bailey in goal. Was the reliable keeper in McGarry’s promotion winning side in 1968, but was displaced by Best shortly afterwards.

Laurie Sivell

Laurie, from Lowestoft, never looked big enough to be a keeper, but what he lacked in height he more than made up in bravery. He was the main man for Town between the posts until he lost his place to Cooper.

Richard Wright

Ipswich-born Wright looked set for a long international career as he helped Ipswich win promotion in 2000 – saving a penalty at Wembley – and then winning his first England cap. But, after one successful Premier League season with Town, he took up his option to join Arsenal, and then basically spent the rest of his career on the bench at various big clubs.

Who were Bobby Robson’s top signings? See here

Do you agree with the lists? Tell us who your top goalies are below.

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