Gary Chivers - Chelsea FC - Biography 1978/79-1982/83

Photo/Foto: George Herringshaw

Date: 03 January 1983

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      Sunday, 15 May 1960
      Stockwell, England
  • Chelsea FC
    • Club Career Dates
    • League Debut
      Saturday, 21st April 1979 in a 2-1 win at home to Middlesbrough (Aged: 18)
    • Club Career
      128 League apps (+5 as sub), 4 goals
  • Queens Park Rangers
    • Club Career Dates
    • League Debut
      Saturday, 10th November 1984 in a 0-0 draw at home to Sheffield Wednesday (Aged: 24)
    • Club Career
      58 League apps (+2 as sub)
  • Brighton & Hove Albion
    • Club Career Dates
      1988 - 1993.
    • League Debut
    • Club Career
      217 League games. 14 goals.
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Gary CHIVERS - Chelsea FC - Biography 1978/79-1982/83

The history of Chelsea Football Club is littered with young stars who ultimately failed to live up to their potential. The case of Gary Chivers, a stylish, ball-playing central-defender, is perhaps one of the most disappointing of all. The 19 year-old was given his debut by manager Danny Blanchflower as soon as Chelsea's relegation to Division Two was confirmed in April 1979 and he made an impressive contribution in the final five games of the season, particularly at Old Trafford where he played his part in shackling Joe Jordan and Jimmy Greenhoff as a young Chelsea side earned a draw in front of 40, 000 supporters. Chivers began the following campaign in the reserves but an early season injury to right-back Gary Locke gave him the opportunity to show his versatility and he subsequently remained in the team for the majority of the season. He scored twice in his first full season, both being crucial winners in 1-0 victories over Bristol Rovers and Notts County. Chelsea missed promotion on goal difference but made an outstanding start to the following campaign. Gary was now firmly established in the side and was an impressive figure as Chelsea embarked on a run of eight wins and a draw from nine games, the highlight being a 6-0 victory over Newcastle in which Chivers capped another classy display with a Goal of the Season contender. Unfortunately, the defenders in that team were somewhat let down by an attack which scored a total of just eight goals in the last 22 matches and a rot set in at the club which took some time to eradicate. Gary began the following season in the side and played in both games against Southampton as The Blues created a shock in the League Cup with a 3-2 aggregate victory but he fell from favour in the autumn and was not selected for the memorable FA Cup victory over Liverpool. An injury to Micky Droy gave Gary the opportunity to play against Tottenham in the next round but The Blues were beaten. He did, however, keep his place in defence and when Droy returned at the beginning of April, Chivers moved successfully into midfield for the remainder of the season. He was back in defence for the start of the 1982/83 campaign but his form throughout that term was patchy, reflecting that of the club who were to suffer the lowest finish in their history at the end of the season. Gary was regularly selected throughout the campaign but he often wore the look of a man who lacked interest and enthusiasm. He was dropped at the beginning of April and was only recalled as an emergency left-back after an injury to Chris Hutchings but he did enough to convince his manager John Neal that he should remain in the team for the last few games as Chelsea eventually won a hard-fought battle against relegation to Division Three. However, the Chelsea management had decided that wholesale changes were needed for the following season and in May 1983 Chivers had his contract paid up and became a free agent, subsequently joining Swansea City that summer. (Kelvin Barker)