Peter Ndlovu bigraphy, stories - Zimbabwean footballer

Peter Ndlovu : biography

25 February 1973 -

Peter Ndlovu (born 25 February 1973) is a Zimbabwean former professional footballer and is currently assistant manager of the Zimbabwe national football team.

Born in Bulawayo, he played as a striker from 1988 until 2011. He spent time playing in England, where he appeared in the Premier League for Coventry City and in the Football League for Birmingham City, Huddersfield Town and Sheffield United. He also played for Highlanders, Mamelodi Sundowns, Thanda Royal Zulu, Highfield United and Black Mambas in South Africa. He was capped 100 times by his country, scoring 38 international goals.

Playing career

Coventry City

Ndlovu was originally spotted by John Sillett, prior to his official signing from Highlanders by Terry Butcher in July 1991. He made an immediate impact by scoring away at Arsenal and then became the toast of Highfield Road with a thunderbolt winner against Aston Villa in November 1991, endearing him to the Sky Blues fans.Jim Brown (2000) Coventry City:The Elite Era. Desert Island Books.

Although he would go on to play a major role at several clubs in the second tier, it is his time at Coventry he is particularly known for given the club's top flight status at that time. He would play a significant role in two major teams, Bobby Gould's attacking team of the early 90s and Ron Atkinson-Gordon Strachan's expansive squad of the mid-late 1990s.

Bobby Gould's team in 1992–93 are widely regarded as under-achievers. Having acquired the legendary striker Micky Quinn in November 1992 they continued what had already been a blistering start, with away wins at Tottenham Hotspur (2–0) Sheffield Wednesday (2–1) and Wimbledon (2–1) to add to already impressive home wins against Middlesbrough (2–1). By the early autumn the Sky Blues briefly topped the inaugural Premier league and would only lose five league games prior to Christmas. The addition of Micky Quinn to the squad led to further outstanding home wins against Aston Villa (3–0) and Liverpool (5–1). They would eventually go to Championship contenders Blackburn Rovers and leave with a (5–2) victory in February 1993. However, a barren March/April programme and a run in that would see back to back games against Man Utd, Liverpool, Chelsea and Leeds Utd saw them slip from 5th in the league in February to 15th by the end of May. A league position secured with a thrilling performance from Ndlovu in a last day 3–3 draw against Leeds Utd. Ndlovu was a key component throughout the season in Gould's fast pacey front line which included John Williams, Kevin Gallacher (until his departure to Blackburn) and Robert Rosario, who formed a worthy partnership with Micky Quinn. Peter Ndlovu's goal against Norwich City, in a 1–1 draw in late September, was a signature piece of Ndlovu flair which earned him the Match of Day 'Goal of the month' competition.

The 1993–94 season would see a managerial shift in the autumn as Phil Neal, Bobby Gould's number two, took over the reins from his passionate Coventry born boss but not before the legendary curtain raiser to the 93–94 season. Bobby Gould's first day gamble would be to play without traditional full backs. This novel formation gave Peter Ndlovu full licence to play a large part in a memorable opening day triumph in the capital. The 3–0 victory on a sunny 14 August, against double-cup winners Arsenal, saw Micky Quinn score a hat-trick in front of the newly refurbished North Bank. It also ensured that the Sky Blues made one of their customary lightning starts to the season, so synonymous of the early 1990s. After an early Ian Wright threat on the Coventry goal, it was Ndlovu who made a darting run into the Arsenal penalty box which produced a clumsy challenge from Lee Dixon. The resulting penalty was calmly converted by Micky Quinn for the opener. The second half would see Ndlovu and Roy Wegerle lead the Gunners defence a merry dance, Wegerle in particular enjoying possibly his finest game for the club. So shocked were Arsenal by the 3–0 defeat that manager George Graham cancelled the proposed post-match lap of honour at the final whistle, which was to parade their League Cup and FA Cup silverware. The explanation given by Arsenal was 'Reasons beyond the club's control!'. It is thought the Sky Blues turned down a then-massive £4 million offer from Arsenal at the end of the same 1994 season for Ndlovu's services. The dramatic resignation of Bobby Gould, after a 5–1 mauling at Loftus Road in October 1993, was reputedly inspired by the possible imminent sale of Ndlovu to a top six club.

Living octopus

Living octopus

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