Monday 08 October 2012
When Tottenham Hotspur manager Andre Villas-Boas picked Hugo Lloris, his summer signing from Lyon, over Brad Friedel for the Barclays Premier League match against Aston Villa yesterday, it brought to an end his record run of 310 consecutive Premier League starts by the veteran goalkeeper.
The next best mark is that of 190 consecutive matches held by Friedel’s compatriot Tim Howard at Everton. The best for an outfield player is 164, held by Chelsea’s Frank Lampard.
Here, we look at the major landmarks in the 41-year-old American's run, where, unfortunately for Friedel, he was unable to celebrate reaching each figure with victory. The one consolation is that the final match in the run was an historic victory for Spurs over Manchester United at Old Trafford.
Game 1 – 14 August 2004: Blackburn Rovers 1 West Bromwich Albion 1
Aged 33, Friedel begins his run at Ewood Park, where he starts the 2004-05 season as Rovers' first choice. Neil Clement's deflected free-kick beats Friedel just after the half-hour as the match is drawn.
Game 100 – 23 January 2007: Watford 2 Blackburn 1
Beaten by two headers as the Hornets picked up three points at Vicarage Road. First Brett Emerton inadvertently nods past his own goalkeeper and then, after Benni McCarthy's equaliser, Friedel's countryman Jay DeMerit heads home the winner.
Game 200 – 31 October 2009: Everton 1 Aston Villa 1
Having joined Aston Villa before the 2008/09 season, Friedel travels to Goodison Park where he is forced into early action, tipping over a Ayegbeni Yakubu shot. He is beaten in first-half stoppage time, when Tim Cahill's cross hits Yakubu in the box and falls for Diniyar Bilyaletdinov, who makes no mistake from close range.
Game 300 – 21 April 2012: Queens Park Rangers 1 Tottenham Hotspur 0
The first match in which a player is making his 300th consecutive appearance almost gets off to a poor start when Friedel is involved in a mix-up with Kyle Walker that almost gives QPR an early lead, but the American recovers his poise to make a succession of top saves. He is beaten in the 24th minute, however, by Adel Taarabt's curling free-kick.