Dale Roberts

Dale Roberts

Born 22 October 1986 (Age 21 at debut)

Position: Goalkeeper

(Diamonds player #283)

Total appearances 104

(90 League, 1 FA Cup, 7 FA Trophy, 5 League Cup, 1 Hillier Senior Cup)

First spell

Debut: 26 January 2008 (Home Weymouth)

Final game: 12 April 2008 (Away Forest Green Rovers)

Second spell

Debut: 4 October 2008 (Away Oxford United)

Final game: 11 September 2010 (Home Newport County)

Dale was born in Horden, County Durham, and started his career in the Middlesbrough Academy after joining from Sunderland at 16. The promising young goalkeeper joined Nottingham Forest in July 2005, as the third choice keeper to Rune Pedersen and Paul Gerrard, and in order to gain some first team experience, went out on loan to Northern Premier League Premier side Eastwood Town in March 2006 making 12 appearances. The following season, he joined Conference North side Alfreton Town on a season long loan, playing some 47 games for the Reds. He found himself on the Nottingham Forest bench on a number of occasions at the beginning of the 2007/2008 season, but joined Diamonds on a one month loan deal on 25 January 2008. This was later extended until the end of the season, although he was recalled by Forest on 14 April due to an injury to their own keeper and although he played in the Setanta Shield Final, he missed Diamonds final six League games.

Dale Roberts

Dale arrived back at Nene Park on 1 October 2008 as cover for Alan Marriott who was facing stomach surgery. Although initially for just one month, on 18 October, this was extended until January 2009. At the end of the loan period, agreement was reached with Nottm Forest and he joined Diamonds on a permanent deal on 2 January 2009. His impressive performances during that season included an appearance for the England C team in their 4-0 victory over Malta. He also won the Rushden & Diamonds Travel Club Player of the Season award.

During the 2009/2010 season he played in all four England C games, and was voted the England C player of the season. He had played against Hungary Under-23s in Székésfehérvár, Poland Under-23’s in Grodzisk Wielkopolski in November 2009 and then in a 1-0 friendly win against the East of Scotland League representative side in May 2010 and in the 2-1 win over the Republic of Ireland in the International Challenge Trophy later that month. Dale continued as Diamonds No.1 the following season, but an injury on International duty against Wales in Newtown on 15 September 2010 kept him sidelined for several weeks. He returned to action in a reserve game against Peterborough United on 19 October 2010, but was unable to oust Joe Day from the starting eleven.

Sadly, Dale passed away on 14 December 2010 at his home in Higham Ferrers after taking his own life, after making 90 league appearances for the club, plus another 14 cup games. The Number 1 jersey was withdrawn from use as a mark of respect.

roberts england c

Rushden & Diamonds Manager Justin Edinburgh paid tribute to Dale, describing him as “the ultimate professional and a true gentleman”.He added, “Obviously we are all shocked and devastated to lose someone who we thought so highly of. Dale was a fantastic person and I’m sure everyone will say the same. He was the ultimate professional from the first day when I met him. He was a credit to his family and the football club. Dale was on top of his game as England C’s player of the year. He was also adored by the Diamonds fans and rightly so because he built up a fantastic rapport with them. Everything which is being said about Dale is genuine, true and comes from the heart of those who knew him. Personally I can’t speak highly enough of him as a person and a professional.”

Appearances

2007/2008 – squad number 30

Conf

26.1.08

Weymouth (H)

Conf

29.1.08

BurtonAlbion (A)

FAT3

2.2.08

Halifax Town (A)

Conf

9.2.08

Halifax Town (H)

Conf

16.2.08

Altrincham (H)

FAT4

23.2.08

York City (H)

SS5

26.2.08

Kidderminster (A)

Conf

1.3.08

Woking (H)

Conf

4.3.08

Farsley Celtic (A)

SSQF

8.3.08

Northwich Vic (A)

Conf

11.3.08

Ebbsfleet Utd (A)

Conf

15.3.08

Histon (A)

Conf

22.3.08

York City (H)

Conf

24.3.08

Kidderminster (A)

SSSF

27.3.08

Halifax Town (H)

Conf

29.3.08

Droylsden (H)

SSF

3.4.08

Aldershot Tn (A)

Conf

8.4.08

Cambridge Utd(H)

Conf

12.4.08

Forest Green (A)

2008/2009 – squad number 19

Conf

4.10.08

Oxford Utd (A)

Conf

7.10.08

Grays Ath (H)

Conf

12.10.08

Torquay Utd (H)

Conf

18.10.08

York City (A)

FAC4q

25.10.08

Evesham Utd (A)

Conf

1.11.08

Cambridge Utd(A)

SS3

4.11.08

Stevenage B (H)

Conf

8.11.08

Weymouth (H)

Conf

15.11.08

Kidderminster (H)

Conf

22.11.08

Eastbourne B (H)

Conf

29.11.08

Altrincham (A)

Conf

6.12.08

Barrow (H)

Conf

9.12.08

Woking (A)

FAT1

13.12.08

Newport Co (A)

FAT1r

16.12.08

Newport Co (H)

Conf

20.12.08

Northwich Vic (H)

Conf

26.12.08

Stevenage B (A)

Conf

1.1.09

Stevenage B (H)

FAT2

10.1.09

Torquay Utd (A)

Conf

17.1.09

Ebbsfleet Utd (A)

Conf

23.1.09

Forest Green (H)

Conf

27.1.09

Mansfield Tn (A)

Conf

1.2.09

Cambridge Utd(H)

Conf

9.2.09

Burton Albion (A)

Conf

21.2.09

Weymouth (A)

Conf

24.2.09

York City (H)

Conf

28.2.09

Mansfield Tn (H)

Conf

7.3.09

Torquay Utd (A)

Conf

10.3.09

Lewes (H)

Conf

14.3.09

Crawley Tn (A)

Conf

21.3.09

Salisbury City (A)

Conf

24.3.09

Oxford Utd (H)

Conf

28.3.09

Northwich Vic (A)

Conf

31.3.09

Grays Ath (A)

Conf

4.4.09

Salisbury City (H)

Conf

11.4.09

Kettering Tn (H)

Conf

13.4.09

Histon (A)

Conf

18.4.09

Forest Green (A)

Conf

26.4.09

Woking (H)

2009/2010 – squad number 1

Conf

8.8.09

Salisbury City (H)

Conf

11.8.09

York City (A)

Conf

15.8.09

Eastbourne B (A)

Conf

18.8.09

Hayes&Yeading(H)

Coinf

22.8.09

Forest Gn Rvs (H)

Conf

29.8.09

Stevenage Boro(A)

Conf

31.8.09

Cambridge Utd(H)

Conf

5.9.09

Barrow (A)

Conf

8.9.09

Ebbsfleet Utd (A)

Conf

12.9.09

Grays Athletic (H)

HSC1

13.10.09

Daventry Utd (A)

Conf

1.12.09

York City (H)

Conf

5.12.09

Forest Gn Rvrs(A)

FAT1

12.12.09

Billericay Tn (H)

Conf

28.12.09

Kidderminster H(H)

FAT2

19.1.10

Workington (A)

Conf

23.1.10

Barrow (H)

Conf

26.1.10

Wrexham (H)

Conf

30.1.10

Hayes&Yeading(A)

Conf

6.2.10

Grays Athletic (A)

Conf

9.2.10

Eastbourne Boro(H)

Conf

13.2.10

Stevenage Boro(H)

Conf

16.2.10

Oxford Utd (A)

Conf

27.2.10

Kettering Tn (H)

Conf

3.3.10

Histon (A)

Conf

6.3.10

Tamworth (A)

Conf

13.3.10

Gateshead (H)

Conf

20.3.10

Altrincham (A)

Conf

24.3.10

Oxford Utd (H)

Conf

27.3.10

Wimbledon (A)

Conf

30.3.10

Kettering Tn (A)

Conf

2.4.10

Crawley Tn (H)

Conf

5.4.10

Kidderminster H(A)

Conf

10.4.10

Ebbsfleet Utd (H)

Conf

13.4.10

Mansfield Tn (A)

Conf

24.4.10

Luton Tn (H)

POSF1

29.4.10

Oxford Utd (H)

POSF2

3.5.10

Oxford Utd (A)

2010/2011 – squad number 1

Conf

14.8.10

Fleetwood Tn (H)

Conf

17.8.10

Bath City (A)

Conf

21.8.10

Barrow (A)

Conf

24.8.10

Wimbledon (H)

Conf

28.8.10

Grimsby Town (H)

Conf

30.8.10

Kettering Town (A)

Conf

4.9.10

York City (A)

Conf

11.9.10

Newport Co (H)

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