Ken Roberts (footballer)


Ken Roberts (footballer)

Infobox Football biography
playername = Ken Roberts
fullname = Kenneth Owen Roberts
dateofbirth = birth date and age|1936|3|27
cityofbirth = Cefn Mawr, Wrexham
countryofbirth = Wales
nickname = K.O.
position = Winger
years = 1951–1953
1953–58
clubs = Wrexham
Aston Villa
caps(goals) = 1 0 0(0)
38 0 (3)
manageryears = 1968–1976
c.1981–1984
managerclubs = Chester
Oswestry Town

Kenneth Owen Roberts (born March 27 1936, Cefn Mawr near Wrexham) was a professional footballer with Wrexham and Aston Villa who later achieved managerial success with Chester.

Roberts made his solitary Football League appearance for Wrexham when aged just 15 in 1951-52 during a player availability crisis. At 15 years and 158 days old, he equalled the 1929 record of Bradford Park Avenue's Albert Geldard; this record stood until beaten by Reuben Noble-Lazarus of Barnsley in 2008. Two years later he joined Villa and added 38 league outings and three goals to his tally before retiring due to a knee injury.

After spells on the coaching staff with Oswestry Town, Wrexham and Bradford Park Avenue, Roberts became manager of Chester in March 1968 following the departure of Peter Hauser.

Chester's Greatest Season

Chester had never won a Football League promotion when Roberts arrived and six years later this was still the case, having missed out by a single point in 1970-71. But working alongside shrewd coach Brian Green, all that was to change in 1974-75 as Chester finished fourth in Division Four and won promotion on goal average. The season was though best remembered for Chester's incredible Football League Cup run, as they disposed of Leeds United and Newcastle United to reach the semi-finals before suffering a 5-4 aggregate loss to Roberts' former club Aston Villa.

Roberts steered the club to a mid-table finish the following season in Division Three but opted to move upstairs to an administrative role early in the 1976-77, working with new team boss Alan Oakes.

Roberts never managed again professionally but he had a spell in charge of Oswestry Town in the early 1980s. He then became an established football scout, for clubs including Chester and Shrewsbury Town.


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