As part of our celebrations to commemorate the Club’s 25th anniversary this summer, we are inviting fans to select their all-time Shots XI from 1992-2017.
The team will be announced on Tuesday 1 August, exactly 25 years to the day since The Shots played their first ever game, in the Simpsonair Trophy tournament at Camberley Town’s Krooner Park.
We continue by focusing on the best right-backs who have graced the team over a quarter of a century. Please choose your favourite of these stellar candidates – or make your own nomination – and email their name to firstname.lastname@example.org with SHOTS XI in the subject line. Alternatively, send a tweet to @OfficialShots using #ShotsXI.
Tony Cleeve (1994-98, 140 apps, 19 goals): Initially a part of the squad promoted from Isthmian League Division Two in 1994, Cleeve returned to The Rec in 1995 for a fee of £3500. He missed just one league game in 1996-97 and remained a regular as The Shots claimed the Isthmian League Division One title in 1997-98. So impressive were his performances that only injury prevented him from joining Millwall in the summer of 1995.
Rob Gier (2007-08, 46 apps): Winner of 66 international caps for the Philippines and with 138 Football League appearances to his name, Gier was an integral and impressive member of the squad which won the 2007-08 Blue Square Premier championship by 15 points. Rob was also a part of the team which beat his former side Rushden & Diamonds in the Setanta Shield Final and reached the FA Trophy semi-final.
Ben Herd (2009-13, 191 apps, 1 goal): Named Player of the Year in 2010 and Players’ Player of the Year in both 2010 and 2011, Ben has made more Football League appearances for The Shots than any other player. Captain of the team for two seasons, Herd skippered The Shots against West Ham United and Manchester United, as well as in the 2012-13 FA Cup run, and always gave 100%.
Dean Hooper (2002-04, 78 apps, 1 goal): The archetypal tough-tackling full-back, Hoops was something of a cult hero at The Rec for his combustible, hugely committed performances. An England Semi-Professional international with 121 Football League appearances, Hooper won the Ryman Premier Division championship and Hampshire Senior Cup in 2002-03. He was then a regular in The Shots’ first Conference season and made a substitute appearance in the Play-Off Final against Shrewsbury Town.
Kevin Parkins (1992-93, 44 apps, 1 goal): A member of the British Army for 22 years who served in the 1990 Gulf War, ‘Sarge’ was a tireless and uncompromising defender who played a major part in The Shots’ Diadora Division Three title win in our first ever season. The 1988 British Army Player of the Year, Parkins was a solid fixture in the back four which conceded just 35 goals and lost just twice in 38 league games.
(Ben Herd image: Action Images / John Marsh)