One of the most significant signings made by Stevenage in recent seasons, the impact that Mark Roberts had on the fortunes of the club was both rapid and profound. His place at the heart of our defence from the word go helped to steady a ship; one that was rocking after a poor run of form in November 2008. Robbo’s arrival coincided with the start of a run of results that led us to the 2008-9 Blue Square Premier playoffs and the FA Trophy Final.
Made our skipper after Steve Morison departed, the affectionately-named ‘Shirley’ (after the Eastenders character) became one of Boro’s all-time greats. Chipping in with goals against former club Northwich Victoria and former arch-rivals Altrincham illustrated his all-round capabilities. Expectations were, therefore, high for the player’s first full-season at Broadhall Way. Robbo went on to become the first captain to lead Stevenage into the Football League, before leading the side into npower League One too.
The Non-League Double may have eluded him, but he added himself to an illustrious rollcall of Boro’ greats; his no compromise attitude and immense presence at the back much loved by the fans. But all things mast pass. With two caretaker manager stints at Boro’ under his belt and hundreds of appearances, Robbo left the club in 2013 to bring the curtain down on a magnificent era.
Mark Roberts: After Boro’
Robbo moved back north after leaving Boro’, choosing to turn out for Fleetwood Town. He spent two years at Highbury, before returning south-ish to Cambridge United. While at the Us, it’s said that he was set for a loan return to us – only for the move to be blocked by his gaffer at the time. A season at Forest Green followed his two years at the Abbey, before a move back north again took him to Warrington Town.
Stats do not include expunged Chester City fixtures in 2009-10.