B4 LIVE: In Conversation with Sam Ricketts
In Conversation with Sam Ricketts, Manager of Shrewsbury Town FC
Sam is manager of League One football club, Shrewsbury Town. Although the current season is under lockdown, and may not be completed, Sam is one of the only managers in the world to deny Liverpool, the current European and World Club Champions and, until the current crisis, runaway leaders of the Premier League, a win when his team held Liverpool to a 2-2 draw in the fourth round of the FA Cup, before losing 1-0 in the replay. Due to other commitments, Liverpool’s Manager, Jurgen Klopp, wasn’t in charge for the replay, so Sam is probably the only manager Klopp has played this season and failed to beat…other than Diego Simeone of Atlético Madrid.
Sam is also one of a small group of players to have played in all four divisions of professional football. He played over 100 games for Swansea City before playing Premier League football for both Hull City and Bolton Wanderers. He left Bolton in 2013 and captained Wolverhampton Wanderers to the League One title with a record points total. Sam also played for Wales at international level, earning 52 caps.
Sam was born in Aylesbury and his family is highly involved in equestrianism. His father is the 1978 world show-jumping champion, Derek Ricketts, later performance manager of the UK show-jumping team from 2002 to 2010. Sam’s uncle is the former National Hunt champion jockey, John Francome. As a teenager, Sam himself was a keen rider until prioritising football. Sam began his career at Oxford United, making his first team debut on 8 October 2000 in a 2–1 Second Division defeat at rivals Swindon Town.