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November 29, 2012
Star Sport


Age no problem for Pepe ❒ 40-year-old defender continues to push for Tranmere start

Ian Goodison

Forty-year-old Reggae Boy defender Ian Goodison continues to impress at English League One club Tranmere Rovers and has recovered from injury to pressure a young centre back pairing, half his age, for a spot in the starting eleven.

In fact, if you added up the ages of the central defenders Ash Taylor, 22, and Ben Gibson, 19, they would be a combined one year older than the rugged central defender, who is the oldest ever player to earn a starting spot for the Rovers. The player, at his age, still fighting for a spot in the first team, has drawn high commendation from his manager Ronnie Moore, who is happy with the competition for defensive spots. "Goody has great experience. You can't beat what he has done since he first came here in 2004. For Ian to still be doing it at the age of 40 is a credit to the man himself. He's been a fantastic player for this club," Moore told UK publication the Liverpool Echo (http://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk).

Goodison made his 380th appearance at Stevenage last weekend as Taylor served a one-match suspension, but based on a solid performance in a 1-1 draw, has given Moore plenty to think about ahead of this weekend's tie against Chesterfield on home ground Prenton Park.

"At Stevenage, you would not have known he'd been away from first team for a few months. He headed balls, dominated and also kept the ball well for us. Now it will be an interesting challenge with Ash for the Chesterfield game," Moore said.

Goodison only returned to the squad last month after a knee operation in August, which saw the defender spend six weeks on the sidelines. Goodison has been named Tranmere Player of the Season three times, and has won the North West League One Footballer of the Year award on a hat-trick of occasions.

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