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Brendan O'Callaghan

Bradford-born Brendan began his career with Rovers as an old-fashioned centre-forward. Tall and slim, he could look un-coordinated at times, but his aerial ability made him a menace to opposing defenders. His initial impact came in only his fourth game when he came off the bench to score the winner against local rivals Barnsley, something bound to make him a crowd favourite. He soon formed a partnership with fellow striker Peter Kitchen, and both scored as Rovers earned a sensational draw against Liverpool at Anfield in the 1973-74 FA Cup. Having scored a respectable 21 League goals in his first season, he doubled that tally in 1975-76, also hitting six goals in seven games, including a hat-trick against Grimsby Town, to help Rovers reach the Fifth Round of the League Cup.

Brendan remained with Rovers until March 1978, when he moved on to Stoke City for a fee of £40,000. His 76 goals in all competitions puts him fifth on Rovers’ all-time goalscoring list. He went on to play 294 games for Stoke, scoring on his debut and contributing 16 goals in the 1978-79 season. During his Stoke career he moved into defence where he proved to be a solid performer, a real case of poacher turned gamekeeper. He also won six caps for the Republic of Ireland.  He retired from playing football in 1985 after a spell with Oldham Athletic and has since worked for the PFA and within Stoke City’s community programme.

Rovers Debut: 28th August 1973, League Cup Round 1 vs. Notts County (away) won 4-3.

Final game: 28th February 1978, Division Four vs. Grimsby Town (home) lost 0-1.

Career: Football League: 187 appearances, 64 goals. All senior games: 212 appearances, 76 goals

Honours: Sheffield County Cup winner 1975-76.

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