Keetley Frank Image 1 Derby County 1922

Keetley Frank Image 1 Derby County 1922


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Derby born inside right Frank Keetley is one of a famous family of brothers, and began his football career with Victoria Ironworks in 1920 before signing for hometown Second Division club Derby County in 1921, making his Football League debut at Nottingham Forest that October. He played most of the remaining matches of his his debut season, 31 in total, as Derby finished mid-table, however he struggled for game time during his remaining four seasons at The Baseball Ground, making 21 appearances as Derby County finished in third place in 1924-25, narrowly missing out on promotion, but playing only 11 games the next season as they went one better, finishing runners up in the Second Division and securing promotion to the top flight.

He moved to Doncaster Rovers in the summer of 1926 after 8 goals in 82 appearances for Derby County – three of his brothers, Harry, Tom and Joe, also played for Doncaster in their careers – becoming a regular in the first team until he was sold to Second Division Bradford City in November 1929 after 30 goals in 113 appearances for Donny.

In just over 18 months at Bradford City he scored 8 goals in 30 appearances, before moving to Lincoln City in the 1931 close season, and at Lincoln he scored 19 goals in only 27 League games in 1931-32 to help propel them to the Third Division (North) Championship, including a remarkable 6 goal burst (a double hat-trick and a Lincoln City club record) in a 9-1 win over Halifax Town in January 1932. He stayed a further season at Sincil Bank in the Second Division before joining Hull City in the 1932 close season after 28 goals in only 46 appearances.

However he couldn’t get into a strong Hull City team that won the Third Division (North) Championship and left Anlaby Road for non league Margate in 1933 without playing a first team game for The Tigers, moving to Worcester City in 1934 where he finished his career.

Frank Keetley was one of several brothers who played professionally, including Charlie, who played for Leeds United, Bradford City and Reading, Harry who played for Doncaster Rovers and Mansfield Town, Joe who played for Bolton Wanderers, Accrington Stanley, Liverpool, Wolves, Wrexham and Doncaster, and Tom, who played for Bradford Park Avenue, Doncaster Rovers, Notts County and Lincoln City.


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