City record best defensive start to a season for 35 years: since the title-winners of 1984-85

24 games into the 2019-20 League Two season, and City’s record of just 19 goals conceded is certainly impressive: and that is before you compare it to the club’s recent history in that regard.

Gary Bowyer’s side are already into double figures in regards to clean sheets, and you have to go back into the mid-1980s to find a season that, at the 24-game stage, is better than the class of 2019-20.

In fact, as fate would perhaps have it, it is the last squad that managed to secure a league title who were better defensively: Trevor Cherry’s 1984-85 title-winners, who were promoted from Division Three 35 years ago.

They shipped just 18 goals in their first 24 games on the way to finishing top of the table, just one better than Bowyer’s side have currently posted defensively.

The only other squad to have come close to that since 1984-85 is the class of 2016-17, who conceded 20 in their first 24. That season ended with City making the play-off final, and while defensive resilience at this stage of a season is by no means a guarantee to success, the history books suggest that it certainly could go a long way to determining a high finish in the league.

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