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Wes FODERINGHAM

A former England under-19 international goalkeeper initially signed on a three month loan deal from Crystal Palace, after injury to first choice keeper Phil Smith in October 2011, Foderingham made a superb start to his Town career - after making his debut in a 2-0 away win at Accrington Stanley, he became the first Town custodian to keep clean sheets in every one of his first five league matches, and just missed out on equalling the overall club record of six after conceding in a 1-1 draw at AFC Wimbledon in November.

Just a few weeks into his loan spell, Town boss Paolo di Canio was already talking about extending his deal if possible - and though a permanent deal was originally considered to be unlikely, by the end of December, Palace boss Dougie Freedman confirmed that negotiations were underway, with Foderingham still third choice at Selhurst Park. Foderingham soon signed a two-and-a-half year deal for an undisclosed fee - the new signing pointing to the club's ambition and support as key factors in his decision to move.

The signing was one of the most important of the season - Foderingham pulling off numerous superb saves, often at crucial times, as Swindon moved up the league standings - and incredibly, he conceded just one goal in the league at the County Ground all season - keeping sixteen clean sheets out of seventeen at home. After equalling Fraser Digby's record of consecutive games without conceding, Matt Richards' goal for Shrewsbury prevented him from breaking the record - only for Foderingham to break it at the second attempt, by not conceding in any of his last nine home games.

Foderingham was virtually ever-present after signing - rested only for a Johnstone's Paint Trophy tie against AFC Wimbledon in November (a competition in which he was on the losing team at Wembley, after the Town reached the final), until he was implicated in a late night drinking session at the end of the season - Town boss di Canio punishing the guilty parties by leaving them out of a trip to Gillingham. Though Swindon lost the game without him, results elsewhere meant that promotion was secured at Priestfield - and after the game, Foderingham was mobbed by a crowd of celebrating Town fans as he tried to drive away from the ground. After issuing an apology, Foderingham returned to the side the following weekend, as Swindon sealed the League Two championship in style, with a 5-0 win over Port Vale.

With Phil Smith leaving at the end of the season, Foderingham was handed the number one shirt for the new campaign - and with only first year professional Leigh Bedwell as cover, Foderingham was virtually unchallenged for his starting position, and he added to his record of home clean sheets in the opening games of the season, with the Town recording victories to nil over Brighton, Crawley and Milton Keynes Dons, as well as a goalless draw at Hartlepool - his superb record attracting scouts from both the England under-21 and British Olympic set-ups.

It was the fifth match of the season before Foderingham conceded his first goal of the season - and he was adjudged by some to have been partially at fault for at least one of the goals, as the Town surrendered a two goal lead at Premier League Stoke in the Carling Cup, before dramatically sealing a memorable 4-3 victory in the last minute of extra time. The following weekend, a clearance from Foderingham was charged down at Preston, allowing the hosts to take an early lead at Deepdale - when the Town conceded a second soon after, boss Paolo di Canio took the remarkable step of substituting the Town keeper, replacing him with Bedwell to make his League debut just 22 minutes into the game. Obviously unhappy, Foderingham stormed off the pitch, and went to sit with the travelling support, before di Canio let rip in his post-match interview - accusing Foderingham of arrogance and behaving as the “worst professional” he has ever seen, the Town boss threatened to drop him from the side if he failed to apologise to the fans. With captain Paul Caddis already excluded from the squad, many Town fans feared the worst - but the following day, the two men held ‘clear the air’ talks, culminating in a public apology from Foderingham, and he was reinstated to the side for the 1-0 defeat at Oxford in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy two days later.

If the substitution was a ploy to motivate the only player in the Town squad with little competition for his starting place, then it proved to be a masterstroke - Foderingham’s form soon picking up, as the Town pushed for back-to-back promotions, and though he was often a spectator, especially during home games, he would often pull out a superb stop when called upon. After di Canio resigned in February, Foderingham made arguably the save of the season for new boss Kevin MacDonald’s first game in charge - stopping a powerful header from former Town striker Leon Clarke from point-blank range, which would have put the Town two behind in a game they went on to win 2-1.

As the Town’s form dipped towards the end of the season, and their challenge for automatic promotion fell away, Foderingham seemed to develop a crazy streak - conceding three penalties when quickly rushing out from his goal-line to close down strikers, and also twice being punished for handling the ball outside the area, prompting MacDonald to tell his goalkeeper to “calm down a bit”, as his side prepared for the play-offs. After drawing the first leg with Brentford, Foderingham was called into action time and again in the second leg - and though he conceded on three occasions, his saves helped keep the Town in the game, as Aden Flint’s last gasp equaliser took the game to extra-time. Foderingham made at least two superb stops during the extra period, before going down with cramp just before the end of the game - a knock that arguably impeded the Town keeper during the penalty shootout, in which the Bees scored all of their penalties to win through to the final.

Despite missing out on promotion, it was a superb season for Foderingham personally, as he almost cleaned up at the end of season awards - being named as the Supporters Club, SAS Away Travel and Disabled Supporters Group Player of the Year, as well as runner-up in the Swindon Advertiser Player of the Year award, and also being named in the PFA Team of the Year as the top goalkeeper in the division. Though a number of clubs were rumoured to be showing an interest in his services, and despite a revolution in the playing staff over the close season, Foderingham signed a new two year deal until the summer of 2015. Before the new season started, Swindon rebuffed an approach from Brentford for Foderingham's services, rumoured to be in the region of £400,000 - other interest was also reported from Brighton and Bristol City.

With the Town's focus now on youth, Foderingham found himself as one of the more experienced players in the squad - and despite the arrival of Tyrell Belford from Liverpool, he remained as first choice keeper for the 2013/14 campaign, though Belford was often given a run out in the cup competitions - his first appearance coming in October in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy against Plymouth, after Foderingham was struck down by a sickness bug. The Town's new, passing game also saw Foderingham take on new responsibility with the ball at his feet - a new role dubbed as the "sweeper-keeper" - it was a role that he proved more than adept at.

After missing cup games against Macclesfield and Wycombe in early November due to a freak back injury caused by picking milk up from his fridge, Foderingham was soon recalled to the starting eleven, and again it was reported that he was attracting attention from the Championship, this time from Bournemouth. While stating that he would not be surprised if the Cherries were interested, manager Mark Cooper said that the money would have to be right - admitting that the keeper could leave the club. Foderingham himself said that while any interest from higher would be flattering, his immediate concern was helping the Town into the play-offs, and being under contract, any potential move was out of his hands. Over the January transfer window, Ipswich were also linked with a move for the Town custodian - ultimately though, no bids were forthcoming, and Foderingham remained at the County Ground.

Swindon were to miss out on two fronts - after being knocked out of the Johnstone's Paint Trophy in the Area Final on penalties by Peterborough, the Posh also took the final play-off place - a race that the Town were in until the penultimate game of the season. Foderingham was also prevented from registering his second consecutive ever present campaign by a groin injury, which kept him out for three weeks at the end of February and into March - returning to keep a clean sheet at Ashton Gate in a goalless draw against Bristol City, after which he praised understudy Belford for keeping him on his toes and contributing to his good form. Soon after, boss Cooper stated that Foderingham was in the best form of the season, after a number of superb saves in a 2-1 home win over Sheffield United - one incredible reaction stop in the final few moments coming just thirty seconds before Louis Thompson netted the winning goal following a quick Town breakaway. At the season's end, Foderingham again finished as runner-up to Nathan Thompson in the Swindon Advertiser's Player of the Year award, and again the Town were able to keep hold of him over the summer.

Foderingham's sweeper-keeper role took on even more significance in the 2014/15 campaign, with manager Cooper encouraging him to play the ball out short, with the Town now consistently playing three at the back and a patient, passing game based on possession. The new style wasn't appreciated by all - the risky approach often putting the Town under pressure at the back - early in the season, the first goal conceded in a 2-2 draw at Gillingham coming after an attempted clearance from Foderingham was charged down by a Gills forward. Though the Town keeper stated that he wouldn't be affected by the goal, some of the Town's support were audibly frustrated by the new approach - but it soon began to pay dividends, with the Town battling at the top end of the table. After Cooper declared Foderingham to be the best goalkeeper in League One following another string of superb saves in a draw with Coventry, he went on to save a penalty in a 2-1 win over Bradford in September, pushing away former Town man Alan Sheehan's kick after harshly being adjudged to have brought down a Bantams forward, before going on to be named as the Town's man-of-the-match.

By then, it was pretty clear that any further extension of Foderingham’s time at the County Ground would be dependent on winning promotion to the Championship - in an interview in October, he admitted that despite his contract being up at the end of the season, he had not yet opened talks with Swindon, and that he saw his future “higher up the football pyramid… if that is with Swindon, fantastic”. Chairman Lee Power also confirmed that there would be no contract offer without promotion - despite describing Foderingham as the “best goalkeeper in this league by a mile”, the salary he was earning having signed for the club in the free-spending Paolo di Canio era meant that the Town could not afford to keep him in League One.

Rested only for Johnstone’s Paint Trophy ties, Foderingham remained as a key part of the squad that topped the table at the turn of the year - and a top two finish that might keep him at the club seemed a realistic proposition right up until Easter, when back-to-back 3-0 defeats against promotion rivals Milton Keynes Dons and Bristol City left the Town ten points off the automatic places, though almost assured of a play-off place. When the Town got back on track the following week with a 1-0 win over Peterborough that left them needing just one point from their last six games to secure a top six place, Foderingham stated that everyone would be able to play without pressure once that goal had been achieved - but when a superb 4-2 win at Rochdale put them only six points off second place, with a game in hand and a match at second placed Preston still to play, the unlikely dream of automatic promotion once again seemed a possibility. A surprise home defeat to already relegated Yeovil was followed by a 3-3 draw against Walsall, in which Foderingham made an uncharacteristic error to gift the Saddlers the lead quickly ended the Town’s hopes for a second time, and the Town keeper was one of many players rested for two of the final three games, as boss Mark Cooper prepared for the play-offs.

Foderingham was inevitably reinstated for what proved to be an extraordinary play-off campaign - after going behind in the first leg of the semi-finals against Sheffield United at Bramall Lane, the Town turned the game around to win 2-1 with an injury time goal. The second leg was one of the most astonishing games ever witnessed at the County Ground - having raced to an early three goal lead, the Town found themselves holding on at the end to a 5-5 draw. Though Foderingham conceded five goals, there was little that he could have done for any of the goals - after the game, he stated that he didn’t think he would play in another game like it for the rest of his career.

As the team prepared for Wembley, Foderingham was again the subject of much media speculation concerning his next destination, with both Birmingham City and Nottingham Forest rumoured to be interested - and after the Town were thumped 4-0 by Preston in the final to end their dreams of promotion, Foderingham confirmed after the game that he was “99% sure” that he would be leaving, and without a contract offer from Swindon on the table, he had already spoken to other clubs. The following week, the club confirmed that Foderingham had been released, and the keeper released a statement on social media site Twitter to thank the club and the fans, stating that he would always be grateful to Swindon for giving him his chance in league football. After reports linked him with talks at Reading, he eventually signed for Scottish giants Rangers in early July 2015.

PLAYING RECORD:

Season LEAGUE FA CUP LEAGUE CUP OTHER TOTAL
Played Gls Played Gls Played Gls Played Gls Played Gls
'14/'15 47 - 1 - 2 - - - 50 -
'13/'14 41 - - - 3 - 2 - 46 -
'12/'13 48 - 1 - 4 - 1 - 54 -
'11/'12 33 - 4 - - - 4 - 41 -
TOTAL 169 - 6 - 9 - 7 - 191 -


TRANSFER INFORMATION:

DATE IN/OUT TRANSFER DETAIL
14 OCT 2011 IN Crystal Palace
(loan)
6 JAN 2012 IN Crystal Palace
Undisclosed fee ()
1 JUN 2015 OUT (released)
» Rangers


full name

Wesley Andrew Foderingham


 ENGLAND
U-19 international apps



date of birth
14 January 1991


             
             
             
             
             
           

usual positions
goalkeeper

youth career
Fulham

senior career
Fulham
Carshalton Athletic
Bromley
Crystal Palace
Bromley (loan)
Boreham Wood (loan)
Histon (loan)
SWINDON TOWN (loan)
SWINDON TOWN

website links
Twitter