Dave Bennett (footballer, born 1959)
|Full name||David Anthony Bennett|
|Date of birth||11 July 1959|
|Place of birth||Manchester, England|
|1991||→ Shrewsbury Town (loan)||2||(2)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
David Anthony Bennett (born 11 July 1959) is an English former Association football player. He is most famous for playing in two FA Cup Finals; 1981 for Manchester City, when he finished on the losing side, and 1987, when he produced a Man of the Match performance as Coventry City beat Tottenham Hotspur 3–2.
Bennett was born in Manchester and began his playing career with Manchester City, making his first senior appearance for them in the 1978–79 season and becoming a first team regular the following season. He was on the losing side to Tottenham Hotspur as City lost the 1981 FA Cup Final replay 3–2 after drawing 1–1 in the original game, and had scored seven times in the First Division that season.
In September 1981, he was surprisingly sold to Third Division side Cardiff City, and in his second season helping them win promotion to the Second Division. In two seasons at Ninian Park, he played 77 league games and scored 18 goals.
In July 1983, he returned to the First Division in a move to Coventry City. Five strong seasons followed, capped by an FA Cup winner's medal in 1987 when he scored in a man of the match performance for the Sky Blues as they achieved a shock 3–2 win over Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley. He also supplied the cross for Keith Houchen's classic headed goal.
However, he lost his place in the first team for the 1988–89 season, during which he played just seven times before transferring to their First Division rivals Sheffield Wednesday in March 1989. He had played a total of 172 league games for the Sky Blues, scoring 25 goals.
He spent 18 months at Sheffield Wednesday, enduring their relegation to the Second Division at the end of the 1989–90 season, before joining Swindon Town in September 1990. He was brought to the County Ground by manager Ossie Ardiles, who had ironically been his Tottenham nemesis in the FA Cup final only three years earlier.
However, injury misery immediately followed, with Bennett breaking his leg in only his second match for the club. After spending a year recovering, Bennett was loaned out to Shrewsbury Town to regain full match-fitness. Astonishingly, he broke the same leg, again in his second appearance for the club, effectively ending his professional career.
Dave Bennett now works as a pundit and co-commentator for Free Radio 80s Coventry and Warwickshire, covering Sky Blues matches.
- Photos and stats at sporting-heroes.net