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Peter Sillett
Personal information
Full name Peter Richard Tudor Sillett
Date of birth 1 February 1933(1933-02-01)
Place of birth    Southampton, England
Date of death    13 March 1998 (aged 65)
Place of death    Ashford, Kent, England
Playing position Full-back
Senior career1
Years Club App (Gls)*
1951–1953
1953–1962
Southampton
Chelsea
059 0(4)
260 (29)   
National team
1955 England 003 0(0)
Teams managed
1965–1973
1979–1983
1988–1992
Ashford Town
Hastings United
Hastings Town

1 Senior club appearances and goals
counted for the domestic league only.
* Appearances (Goals)

Peter Richard Sillett (1 February 1933 – 13 March 1998) was an English footballer. He played for Chelsea and Southampton as a right back, and made three appearances for England.

He was the older brother of John Sillett, who managed Coventry City to FA Cup success in 1987. Sir Stanley Matthews once said that Sillett was the best full-back he ever played against.

Contents

Southampton

Peter was the son of Charlie Sillett (who was a full-back with Southampton from 1931-1938) and inherited his father’s skills. He joined the Saints in January 1949 and soon afterwards gained England Youth recognition.

Extremely well-built, he weighed over 13 stone when only 18. Peter matured quickly into a full-back of some distinction.

In 1953, while he was doing his National Service in the RAF he came up against Stanley Matthews when Saints took Blackpool, the eventual winners, to an FA Cup replay.

Unfortunately, Southampton were facing mounting debts and, with this fact known to many of the country’s top clubs, it wasn’t too long before Sillett, together with his younger brother John, was ‘induced’ to join Ted Drake's Chelsea, for a fee of £12,000.

In his two seasons at The Dell, he made 59 appearances and scored 4 goals.

Chelsea

Sillett signed for Chelsea in 1953 and became club's established full-back when fit. A strong defender with a powerful shot, he scored 34 goals for Chelsea, an unusually high tally for a full-back in that era, and is acclaimed for scoring what is widely perceived as the 1954–55 title-winning goal. During a match against Chelsea's principal rivals, Wolves on Easter Saturday 1955 in front of a crowd of 75,043, Chelsea were awarded a penalty with that game at 0–0 after Wolves captain Billy Wright had handled the ball in the penalty area. Sillett stepped up to take it and nervelessly smashed the ball past goalkeeper Bert Williams to give Chelsea a 1–0 win and complete a league double over Wolves, one of five goals he netted in the run-in. Chelsea went on to wrap up the title in their next home game, against Sheffield Wednesday.

Playing in London, Peter continued to attract rave notices and England Under-23 caps were followed by his first full international against France in May 1955. He also turned out for the representative London XI in the 1955-58 Inter-Cities Fairs Cup alongside Chelsea team mates Ken Armstrong, Derek Saunders and Jim Lewis, during which the side reached the final, though they lost on aggregate to FC Barcelona

He remained with Chelsea until June 1962, when new manager Tommy Docherty made a series of sweeping changes to the playing squad, and made a total 288 appearances for Chelsea.

England

Sillett was also an England international, winning three caps, and was in England’s squad for the 1958 FIFA World Cup.

Later career

He moved to Guildford City in 1962 and from 1965 to 1973 was player-manager at Ashford Town before arthritis forced him to quit the game, although he continued as manager/coach for various clubs until 1987.

In 1998, he died aged 65 after a long battle against cancer.

Honours

References

  • Duncan Holley & Gary Chalk (1992). The Alphabet of the Saints. ACL & Polar Publishing. ISBN 0-9514862-3-3.  

External links

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