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[01 MAR 99] COVENTRY CITY FC MATCH REPORT
McSheffrey Youngest Player In Citys' History

Sixteen years old Gary McSheffrey made history for Coventry City, or rather manager Gordon Strachan made sure he made history, in the epic battle at Villa Park.

City beat Villa on their own turf for the first time in a league match and with stoppage time draining away Strachan quickly called the youngster off the substitutes’ bench.

A few hurried waves at referee Uriah Rennie and McSheffrey was in the match and officially became the youngest player in Coventry City’s history at the age of 16 years 198 days.

It mattered not that he did not touch the ball in what seemed to be only a thirty seconds gap to the final whistle. When it sounded, the star struck youngster raced around the pitch shaking the hands of as many players as he could reach.

His delight at the result was obvious. He is a Sky Blues fan born within 100 yards of Highfield Road Stadium and still living there.

He is also a big talent, hence his appearance on the subs bench. Strachan explained:

"History was being made on that pitch and I wanted a young man who was born in Coventry to be part of it."

Darren Huckerby did not seem to appreciate the significance of that moment. He appeared disgruntled when he was brought off for McSheffrey’s benefit, and Strachan later dubbed him ‘a baby’ in a radio interview.

The big question now is who will partner Huckerby in attack in the crucial match against Charlton Athletic at Highfield Road on Saturday. The points are vital to both clubs and Strachan will have Noel Whelan available again after missing the Villa match with a shoulder injury.

But he could find his way back blocked by John Aloisi. The young Australian poached two great goals and with George Boateng slotting two more, Strachan must surely stay with an unchanged line up, with Whelan taking over on the bench from McSheffrey.
    

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CWN / Sport / Football / Coventry City FC / 01 Mar 99

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM