Writer: Cannock Saddler
Date:Friday August 3 2007
As a Saddlers fan for just over 15 years it is hard to imagine the club without Ian Roper. If ever there was a stereotypical image of a lower league defender then Ropes just about sums it up!
It is strange to think that Roper nearly didn't make it at Walsall and we have instincts of former boss Chris Nicholl to thank that he did.
Roper joined the club in 1995 as a trainee and in all honesty didn't look great! Nicholl however put his faith in him and during a roller coaster 12 years Roper has always put his heart and soul into his performances.
As a trainee Roper never looked comfortable on the ball but over time he has taken massive steps forward and formed some of our best defensive partnerships in years alongside Adrian Viveash and last season Ant Gerrard.
Roper is certainly not a goal scorer and last season's 4 goals increased his career goals tally by 200%!
Having said this it is what Roper does at the back that makes him special. Ok so he isn't the neatest or most tactically aware defender in the world but he is never in any doubt when the ball needs to be belted over the stand!
His contribution and consistent displays have been marked in recent years when he was named Walsall player of the year and only last season became Walsall's first entry into football magazine Four Four Two's Top 50 Players from the Football League.
With the new season just around the corner here's hoping for more of the same from one of Walsall's greatest servants.
What are your memories and opinions of Roper, let us know in our forum.
Date:Friday August 3 2007
Walsall FC Fixtures 2013/14 (Wednesday June 19 2013)
Purkiss Set To Stay - Twitter (Tuesday June 18 2013)
Smith Update On Out Of Contract Trio (Monday June 17 2013)
New Kits Revealed (Monday June 17 2013)
Capital One Cup 1st Round Draw (Monday June 17 2013)
Cutler Joins Backroom Staff (Friday June 14 2013)
The Butler Did It - Now Your Turn (Thursday June 13 2013)
Walsall Seeded For Carling Cup Draw (Wednesday June 12 2013)
Chambers Twins Sign Up! (Tuesday June 11 2013)
Mick Kearns Retires From Full Time Role (Monday June 10 2013)
|18. Sheff Utd||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Opening Day Opponents Aiming High
» Coventry : 20/06/2013 06:00:00
|Robinson Signs New 12 Month Deal
» Tranmere : 19/06/2013 21:56:00
|Horwood Joins Until 2015
» Tranmere : 19/06/2013 21:50:00
|Foster Signs Two Year Deal
» Tranmere : 19/06/2013 21:46:00
|2013-14 Tranmere Fixtures Released
» Tranmere : 19/06/2013 21:40:00
|Timmins On Interesting Start To The Season
» Tranmere : 19/06/2013 21:31:00
|2013/14 Fixtures: PNE Host Wolves
» Preston : 19/06/2013 21:26:00