Monday, 19 July 2010

94 Rob Wakenshaw

Position : Forward (also played on wing)

Played : 1986-7

Appearances : 29

Goals : 5

Vic Halom’s last permanent signing ,Rob arrived from Carlisle in September 1986 for £5,000. He started out with Everton and after scoring regularly in the reserves made his debut in a televised game against Manchester United in 1983-4. He scored too but all you can see is a massive scramble in the six yard box with Gerald Sinstadt eventually proclaiming that Rob got the last touch. He only had two more games for The Toffees before they let him go to Carlisle in 1985.He played eight games for them scoring twice but didn’t settle and went on loan to Doncaster scoring 3 in 8.

When he arrived Halom made the very ominous statement that he was here “to take the pressure off Steve Taylor” and he initially played on the right but within a fortnight Taylor had been sold and Rob had to replace him upfront. A short guy with bottle-blonde hair , Rob was popular with the ladies but other fans were less sure about him particularly after his sending off at Peterborough. He had some skill but just seemed the wrong sort of player for a survival battle. Eddie Gray took the same view and brought in Lyndon Simmonds on loan to replace him. Nevertheless Rob’s best moments came towards the end of the season. He came on as sub against Preston away and scored two well-taken goals that proved to be the margin of victory. Then in one of the last home games against Halifax he scored one of the best goals seen at Spotland with a scissor kick volley from the edge of the box in a 5-1 victory.

This late flowering won him the offer of a new contract but he chose to join Crewe instead for a small fee. Rob spent just over a year at Gresty Road scoring only once in 22 appearances before dropping into non-league with Fleetwood and Southport. He later re-located to the Isle of Man where he now runs his own cleaning firm.

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