Mark Wallington Testimonial ball 1982

Links With The Past: Mark Wallington's Testimonial Football

Former Leicester City goalkeeper Mark Wallington made 460 competitive appearances for the Football Club in the 1970s and 1980s.
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Initially signed as Peter Shilton’s deputy in 1972, Wallington became the First Team’s goalkeeper following Shilton’s departure from Filbert Street in November 1974.

In January 1975, he began his Club record run of playing in 331 consecutive games, which ended in March 1982. During this record-breaking sequence, he became an England Under-23s international and captain, leading City to promotion as second tier champions in 1980.  

His seven-year run of not missing a game ended when he was injured against Shrewsbury Town in the 1982 FA Cup Quarter-Final. The following season, Mark was once again an ever-present in the side.

When he had been at Leicester for 10 years, Mark was awarded a testimonial, which included a match at Filbert Street against Nottingham Forest on 2 October, 1982, ending in a 2-0 victory for Brain Clough’s side.

One of the fundraisers for the testimonial was this football. Two of the hexagonal white panels state, ‘MARK WALLINGTON 1972-1982’ and ‘OFFICIAL TESTIMONIAL BALL’. Two more white panels display the Club’s crest. The remaining panels carry the autographs of each player in the First Team squad.

These include Mark’s own autograph, together with those, among others, of Gary Lineker, Alan Smith, Steve Lynex, Jim Melrose, Tommy Williams, Paul Ramsey, John O’Neill, Larry May, Norman Leet, Andy Peake, Ian Wilson, and Keith Robson.

When Mark left in July 1985, only two players in the Club’s history, Graham Cross and Adam Black, had made more appearances for Leicester City. Jamie Vardy then made his 461st appearance during this season's home fixture against Southampton in April.

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