Richard Smallwood and Paul Gallagher might form their own special goalkeepers’ union ahead of today’s derby showdown.
Both outfield players have had to don the goalkeeper’s gloves and go between the sticks recently and both rescued a point for their respective sides.
Blackburn’s Smallwood took over from the injured David Raya in their game with West Brom while Gally was in goal at Ipswich when Chris Maxwell was sent off.
Former Ewood player Paul admitted: “It was weird as after the Blackburn keeper got injured and their player went in goal, my wife said to me ‘would you go in nets?’ and I said ‘I would love to’ – I didn’t think it would be the week after!”
Gallagher is happy to talk about his shot-stopping exploits and says they were born in Blackburn.
“When I was younger, I always wanted to go into the nets, messing about and such like,” said the 34-year-old.
“I grew up on the Higher Croft Estate and was part of Roman Road Boys, a football team my friend’s dad set up.
“I was only seven playing for the Under 12s. I played up front. My cousin and my friends were all older than me but we played in a league and it wasn’t the best, there were only about six teams, and we were recognised as the outstanding team and used to win around 23-0, ridiculous scores like that.
“I played for them for a number of years, but I always used to go in goal around the estate, building nets out of people’s fences. I would probably get in trouble for that now!
“I just used to love making saves. I always asked my mum and dad for gloves as well as football boots for Christmas even though I was an outfield player.
“I went to Blackburn Eagles when I was at high school, a lot of my friends started playing there so I went along. I ended up playing for the older age group and not with my friends!
“Our goalkeeper got injured so I ended up going in goal for a few months. I could kick it a mile and was good with my feet so they just used to get me to kick it to the striker up front – I did make saves as well though!
“Against Ipswich, that was my first time in goal in a competitive match, I was gutted for Maxi but my eyes lit up when I realised it was an opportunity to go in the net. I think the gaffer could see how much I wanted it.
“I absolutely loved it. I wanted them to have a shot at me as I felt that confident.
“I remember asking Tom Clarke to head it back to me so I could get a feel of the ball and give it a kick as I wanted to be involved. He hit it a bit short and I had to run out and get there before the striker so there were a few moments!
“A few players from the Ipswich team asked me if I had played in goal before. It was enjoyable and most important thing is we got something out of the game.
“I know Maxi doesn’t like reminding of it but it’s one of those things. He has saved us enough times in games.
“And I have been sent off so I know how it feels. I once saved one when I didn’t have the gloves on against Newcastle, Maxi was in net. I was on the goalline and tipped the ball around the post and off I went.
“The manager knows I am brave enough and confident enough to play anywhere and try anything for this football club, that’s the way I have been brought up.
“I have almost played everywhere now – I played right back at Leicester, up front, left midfield, No 10, No 6, No 8 you name it. I am Jack of all trades. Just centre back and left back to go!”
There’s loads more from Paul in Saturday’s edition of The One And Only, plus we have interviews with Lennie Johnrose, Michael Holt, Andrew Hughes, Chris Maxwell, Billy Bodin and much, much more.
The 100-page edition of the official matchday programme is still just £3 and is on sale from Friday afternoon from the club’s Sir Tom Finney Stand ticket office and from the sellers inside and outside the ground on matchday, so make sure you pick up your copy.