Two away defeats in four days have increased the pressure on Steven Pressley & the Sky Blues & once again they are looking over their shoulders at the teams fighting to get away from the bottom four in League One. The result at Gillingham on Tuesday night was a pretty disastrous one but was a unique game in Coventry City's history being the first time that four penalties were scored in a game involving the club. Gillingham's Adebayo Akinfenwa scored two from the spot with Callum Wilson & Carl Baker netting for the Sky Blues. I am certain that there has not been another instance of four penalties scored in a City game since the Second World War but some of the pre-1939 penalty scorers are a bit uncertain.
There has been two post-war instances when four penalties have been awarded. The first was a game at Leicester City's Filbert Street in 1977. City's Mick Coop netted twice from the spot with Jon Sammels replying for the Foxes but Leicester's first penalty by Dennis Rofe was saved by Jim Blyth. City won the game 2-1. The second was in September 1990 at Highfield Road against Nottingham Forest when City were awarded three penalties. Brian Kilcline scored one and missed one, Forest's Nigel Jemson scored from the spot and added a second from open play before Brian Borrows netted City's third penalty two minutes from time to rescue a point in a 2-2 draw.
Akinfenwa is not the first opponent to score two penalties in a game against the Sky Blues - Liverpool's Jan Molby managed three in the League Cup tie at Anfield in 1986 and other players to match Akinfenwa include Swindon's Jan Age Fjortoft (1994), West Ham's Ray Stevens (1984), Tottenham's Glen Hoddle (1980), Manchester City's Gary Owen (1978), West Ham's Geoff Hurst (1969) and Sunderland's Neil Martin (1967). I think Martin is the only opposing player to score two penalties at Highfield Road and he later scored two penalties in a game against Crystal Palace for the Sky Blues.
Another interesting statistic from Tuesday night's game was that stand-in captain Dan Seaborne became the first City player to receive a red card in a league game this season. Earlier in the season Dan was punished with a three-match ban after video evidence showed he had committed a red card offence against Oldham. Carl Baker was, of course, shown a red card in the League Cup tie at Leyton Orient this season. With only one red card last season (Jordan Stewart at Walsall) it is now almost two years since a City player was sent off in a home game - that was Richard Keogh in the final home game in the. Championship.
Red cards are one way of measuring a team's discipline and the above are positive signs for the Sky Blues. However another measure is the number of penalties conceded and the Sky Blues' record this term is appalling with the total now 11 in 35 league games. Admittedly Joe Murphy has saved four of them (a record for a City keeper) the total is the worst in the club's history, surpassing the 10 conceded in 2004-05.
Back to a positive statistic & Callum Wilson's goalscoring feats. Three goals in the last three games has taken his league total to 17 in 27 games and he is now joint top of the League One scorers. He has scored more league goals in a season than any other City player since 1997-98 when Dion Dublin topped the Premiership scoring lists (with Michael Owen) with 18 goals.
With eleven league games remaining Wilson is capable of overhauling some other all-time great City scorers. Over the last 50 years the top seasonal scorers are as follows:
24 George Hudson 1963-64
24 Bobby Gould 1966-67
21 Ian Wallace. 1977-78
19 George Hudson 1964-65
18 Dion Dublin 1997-98
17 Callum Wilson 2013-14
17 Mick Quinn 1992-93
17 Terry Gibson 1983-84
Callum's efforts this season are outstanding especially when you consider he was only a fringe player with only one senior goal to his name before the season kicked off.