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Chatham keeper unknowingly played on with a broken leg and saved penalty in FA Vase tie

Quite the headline isn’t it? Chatham Town keeper Dan Ellis unknowingly played on with a broken leg and even saved a penalty in their FA Vase tie against Corinthian on Saturday.

He was on the receiving end of a “really bad challenge” during the first half of tie, which at the time was at 0-0, before going on to lose 2-1 in extra time.

Chatham’s own version of Bert Trautmann, the famous Man City goalkeeper played on in the 1956 FA Cup Final with a broken neck, made many an incredible save during the game.

Manager Scott Lindsey said: “Dan had the ball securely in his hands and it’s a really bad challenge.

“He was down for a long period of time, the physio got him to his feet and he sort of limped his way through the rest of the half.

“We got him in at half-time and strapped it up and I said to Dan to go out and keep moving because the longer you sit down, it will stiffen up and get worse.

“We wanted him to play on because, ironically, it’s the first time since I’ve been here that we haven’t had a keeper on the bench as Jordan Carey was playing dual-registration for VCD.

“Dan was in a hell of a lot of pain but he’s a really strong character, he’s a man’s man and he showed great character to get through it.

“He was our best player, he made some unbelievable saves and he’ll go down in history for what he did.

“It was just a shame we couldn’t win the game for him.

“I’ve done it myself where I’ve broken my leg and played on.

“You feel the pain but in the chaos of the game you get through it.”

The keeper’s leg break was confirmed after the fourth round tie and it’s suspected that he’s got ligament damage.

Ellis managed to pull of a save from Luke Tanner’s spot-kick in the second half before Chatham got themselves ahead thanks to Jack Evans with 20 minutes of the second half remaining.

They conceded a second penalty kick shortly after, which Oscar Housego converted and then got the winner for Corinthian FC in extra time.

The Chatham manager added: “Corinthian thoroughly deserved to go through and I wish them all in the best in the next round.

“It was possibly the worst game of football I’ve seen in my life.

“We went through a full bag of balls just where it was kicked out of play time and time again.

“I’ve never seen so many throw-ins and such a stop-start game but I’ve got to give Corinthian credit because they game with a gameplan and their style of football beat ours.

“There’s no right or wrong way to play, it’s whoever gets their method right on the day.

“They did that, they’re through, they win a lot of games and they’ve got a chance of going all the way.”

TWITTER REACTION:

@DidiLloydCAM1: Dan was amazing yesterday!

@Tun_Wells_FC: Get well soon!

@ekgill: Absolute legend, All the best Dan, hope to see you back asap

@gillingham57: Who needs the premiership go on the chats

@Anthony40589503: Man of the match was most definitely Chatham Town’s Goal Keeper, outstanding saves

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