Steve Whitworth

Leicester City In 100 Players: Steve Whitworth

Steve Whitworth was one of the most reliable and consistent players in Leicester City’s history.
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A right full-back, he had great pace, was a superb tackler and had an ability to read the game so well that he was always in the right place at the right time, spotting danger long before it occurred. 

He joined the Club as a 16-year-old apprentice and, by the time he made his Leicester City debut on 1 September, 1970 as an 18-year-old, he was an England Schoolboy and youth international. 

In his first season, when he was an ever-present after his debut, Leicester City became Second Division champions and the teenage Steve was part of a defence which conceded only 30 goals, a record which included 23 clean sheets. 

At the start of the following season, under new manager Jimmy Bloomfield, Steve scored as Leicester beat Liverpool 1-0 to win the Charity (now Community) Shield. 

During the Bloomfield era, which lasted from 1971/72 until 1976/77, Steve was an integral part of a City team that was generally considered to be one of the most entertaining sides in the country. 

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Steve Whitworth
Steve Whitworth

Playing in 198 consecutive games earned Steve a Club record.

In those six years, he played more games than any other Foxes player, missing only two league games and one cup game. He set a new Club record by playing in 198 consecutive games. The one surprising statistic in Steve’s career was that, in 400 league and cup appearances for City (only one of which was as a substitute), he never scored a goal. 

He also won six England Under-23s caps and was selected seven times for England. His first England international match was against the reigning world champions West Germany in March 1975. 

After Bloomfield left Filbert Street in May 1977, Frank McLintock took over as manager. In what was an otherwise disastrous season, which ended ignominiously in relegation, just about the only bright spot was the continued effectiveness of Steve’s full-back play. 

Jock Wallace, who replaced McLintock, continued to pick Steve as his first choice right full- back the following season (1978/79), which was also Steve’s testimonial year in recognition of his superb contribution to Leicester's cause during his nine seasons as a first team player. 

Steve transferred to Sunderland for £125,000 in March 1979. Despite this, eight months later, City played Coventry City at Filbert Street for his testimonial match. He then moved to Bolton Wanderers in 1981 and to Mansfield Town in 1983, before becoming player/manager at Barnet in 1985. 

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