Mark Tyler on his career, how Bury FC rekindled his love for the game and keeping clean sheets in proper derbies rather than ones against MK Dons!
For a lad from Norfolk who would have been happy to play one Football League match, Mark Tyler didn’t do too bad.
But, 27 years and almost 800 senior appearances after a fulfilling that ambition aged just 17, the legendary Posh goalkeeper has finally called it day.
He hasn’t played competitively for four years, but he hadn’t given up hope completely of reaching 500 Posh appearances until his favourite club won promotion to the Championship again.
Tyler’s entire focus now will be on his duties as the club’s goalkeeping coach.
The 44 year-old should have no regrets. He was long regarded as one of the top ‘keepers in the lower divisions with conventional wisdom at the time suggesting he was a couple of inches short of making the Premier League.
“I’ve enjoyed every minute,” Tyler stated. “I would have been happy to play one Football League match so to play so many is very satisfying. To make my debut at 17 against a Birmingham team managed by Barry Fry with (former Posh goalkeeper) Ian Bennett in the other goal was just incredible. And the highs of promotions with Posh and Luton will never be forgotten.
“It’s the right time to bow out now though with another promotion to the Championship with Posh. I was on the bench for two games this season and I was quite pleased I didn’t get on as I’d found the training so tough!”
Tyler was successful with Posh and Luton, but he credits a brief spell on loan at Bury in 2009 for extending his career.
“I wasn’t playing so I went to Bury and it turned out to be a great move,” Tyler said. “It rekindled my passion for playing again. I played 11 games and we won seven and lost only one.”
Tyler is proud of his career. He’s proud to have played in big games at the new and old Wembley (“Luton lost in the Conference play-off final to York to a goal that was miles offside,” he recalled) and proud to have stayed with one club for so long.
His popularity has never wavered, partly because he says all the right things.
“I had many good days,” he added. “Any clean sheet against a derby rival always made me happy and I mean proper derbies against Cambridge and Northampton, not MK Dons ”
Look out Mark’s favourite memories from a long and illustrious career.