Gary Bennett (footballer, born 1961)

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Gary Bennett
Personal information
Full name Gary Ernest Bennett
Date of birth (1961-12-04) 4 December 1961 (age 55)
Place of birth Manchester, England
Height 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Playing position Defender
Youth career
Ashton United[1]
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1979–1981 Manchester City 0 (0)
1981–1984 Cardiff City 87 (11)
1984–1995 Sunderland 369 (23)
1995–1996 Carlisle United 26 (5)
1996–1998 Scarborough 87 (18)
1998–2000 Darlington 34 (4)
2001 Worksop Town
2001–2002 Scarborough 1 (0)
Teams managed
2000–2001 Darlington
Sunderland University
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Gary Ernest Bennett (born 4 December 1961) is an English former professional footballer. A defender, he began his career with Manchester City before moving on to Cardiff City in 1981. In 1984, Bennett joined Sunderland and he went on to make over 350 appearances for the club, placing him fifth on the club's all-time appearance list.[2] He left Sunderland in 1995, after eleven years at the club, and later played for Carlisle United, Scarborough and Darlington. During his career, he made over 600 appearances in the Football League, scoring 61 times.[1]

In August 2000, he was appointed manager of Darlington, having previously been in charge of the reserve team at the club. He spent 14 months in charge of the club before returning to his role as reserve team manager but left the club in May 2002. Bennett is also actively involved with the Show Racism the Red Card campaign and was inducted into the organisation's hall of fame in 2004.

Playing career[edit]

Born in Manchester, Bennett began his career with his hometown club Manchester City where he was part of the youth setup, alongside his older brother Dave. He left the club in 1981 without making an first team appearances to join Third Division side Cardiff City,[2] again linking up with his brother. The pair helped the Bluebirds win promotion from the Third Division in the 1982–83 season.[3]

He left Cardiff for a tribunal set fee of £65,000, as well as a £20,000 bonus once Bennett had appeared in 40 matches for the club,[4] in July 1984 to follow manager Len Ashurst to Sunderland,[5] becoming only the second black player to play for the club after Roly Gregoire.[6] He made a goal scoring debut for the club at Roker Park during a 3–1 victory over Southampton, heading past Peter Shilton after just two minutes.[2][4] Bennett went on to play 369 league games with Sunderland scoring 23 goals, appearing in the 1985 Football League Cup Final, losing 1–0 to Norwich City, and the 1992 FA Cup Final, losing 1–0 to Liverpool.[2] He was also voted the clubs player of the season for the 1986–87 and 1993–94 seasons and more than 21,000 people attended his testimonial match at Roker Park against Rangers in July 1993.[2][7] He left Sunderland in 1995 after eleven years at the club, joining Carlisle United.

In 1996, Bennett joined Scarborough as a player-coach, having been convinced to join the club by his former Carlisle manager Mick Wadsworth. He spent two seasons with the side, forming a defensive partnership with Jason Rockett, and helped the club reach the Division Three play-offs in the 1997–98 season. At the end of the season, Wadsworth departed the club to take up a coaching role at Newcastle United and Scarborough received an offer of £20,000 for Bennett from Darlington.[8] He accepted the move, again being appointed player-coach, however he missed large amounts of playing time at the Feethams as he suffered from bone bruising.[9]

Managerial career[edit]

During his spell as a player-coach at Darlington, Bennett also managed the clubs reserve side, helping them win the Pontins League First Division and the Durham Challenge Cup. He was appointed manager of the first team in August 2000, replacing David Hodgson who had originally signed him for the club in 1998.[10] Hodgson had led the club to the play-off final, losing 1–0 to Peterborough United, but had grown tired of continued conflict with the board. Following his departure, the job was offered to Bennett. However, the club struggled to reproduce their form from the previous season and Bennett was sacked after 14 months in charge, having finished in 20th in Division Three in his only full season in charge, being replaced by Tommy Taylor.[9][11] Despite his sacking, Bennett returned to his role as reserve team manager until his contract expired in May 2002.[12]

Bennett later worked as a coach at Middlesbrough's academy before setting up his own coaching school alongside Julio Arca.[8] He also coaches the football teams at the University of Sunderland.[13]

Bennett is also actively involved in campaigns to eliminate racism from football and was one of the first players to participate in the Show Racism the Red Card campaign.[14] He was interviewed for their first film in 1996.[14] He officially joined the organisation in 2003 after retiring from playing and has coached the SRTRC football team. He was inducted into the organisations hall of fame in 2004.[14] He has also participated at events run by fellow campaign Kick It Out.[15]

Personal life[edit]

He released an autobiography, entitled The Black Cat, in 2011.[6] Bennett's daughter Janée Bennett is a musician and was nominated for a Brit Award in 2016 for her role in co-writing Jess Glynne's "Hold My Hand".[16][17][18]

Honours[edit]

Sunderland
Darlington

Career statistics[edit]

Playing career[edit]

Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Other[nb 1] Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Cardiff City 1981–82 Second Division 19 1 ? ? ? ? ? ? 19 1
1982–83 Third Division 36 8 ? ? ? ? ? ? 36 8
1983–84 Second Division 32 2 ? ? ? ? ? ? 32 2
Cardiff City total 87 11 3 0 6 1 0 0 96 12
Sunderland 1984–85[19] First Division 37 3 1 0 8 0 0 0 46 3
1985–86[20] Second Division 28 3 0 0 2 1 0 0 30 4
1986–87[21] 41 4 1 0 2 0 2 1 46 5
1987–88[22] Third Division 38 2 1 0 2 0 0 0 41 2
1988–89[23] Second Division 40 3 2 0 3 0 0 0 45 3
1989–90[24] 36 3 0 0 8 0 3 0 47 3
1990–91[25] First Division 37 2 1 0 3 0 0 0 41 2
1991–92[26] Second Division 39 3 6 0 1 0 0 0 46 3
1992–93[27] First Division 15 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 15 0
1993–94[28] 38 0 3 0 5 0 0 0 46 0
1994–95[29] 20 0 3 0 1 0 0 0 24 0
Sunderland total 369 23 18 0 35 1 5 1 427 25
Carlisle United 1995–96[30] Second Division 26 5 0 0 0 0 5 1 31 6
Scarborough 1996–97[31] Third Division 44 9 1 0 4 2 0 0 49 11
1997–98[32] 43 9 0 0 2 1 1 0 46 10
Scarborough total 87 18 1 0 6 3 1 0 95 21
Darlington 1998–99[33] Third Division 29 4 3 1 0 0 1 0 33 5
1999–2000[34] 5 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 6 0
Darlington total 34 4 4 1 0 0 1 0 39 5
Scarborough 2001–02[35] Conference 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Total 604 61 26 1 47 5 12 2 689 69
  1. ^ Includes other competitive competitions, including Football League play-offs and Football League Trophy

Managerial statistics[edit]

Managerial record by team and tenure
Team From To Record
P W D L Win % Ref
Darlington 2 August 2000[10] 24 October 2001[10] 72 22 31 19 30.6 [36]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Gary Bennett". Post War English & Scottish Football League A–Z Player's Database. Neil Brown. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "Player of the Day: Gary Bennett". Sunderland A.F.C. 28 February 2014. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  3. ^ "Bennett brothers backing Cardiff City to seal Premier League place". WalesOnline. 1 April 2013. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  4. ^ a b "Gary Bennett Q & A". Roker End. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  5. ^ "Interview: Former Sunderland captain Gary Bennett Q&A". Ultimate Football 90. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  6. ^ a b "Sunderland legend Gary Bennett gives his views on football's recent race rows". North East Life. 28 November 2011. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  7. ^ "Hateley at the double as Rangers dominate". Herald Scotland. 29 July 1993. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  8. ^ a b "Where Are They Now? Gary Bennett". The Scarborough News. 26 February 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  9. ^ a b "Where are they now? Gary Bennett". Darlington F.C. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  10. ^ a b c "Gary Bennett". League Managers Association. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  11. ^ "Bennett to leave Darlington". BBC Sport. 22 May 2002. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  12. ^ "Bennett leaves Darlington". BBC Sport. 23 May 2002. Retrieved 3 January 2008. 
  13. ^ "Services -Football (Mens's)". University of Sunderland. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  14. ^ a b c "Hall of Fame". Show Racism the Red Card. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  15. ^ "Kick It Out support young people in Sunderland through community event". Kick It Out. 17 February 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  16. ^ "Sunderland legend Gary Bennett's daughter Janee up for Brit award for Best British Single alongside Adele and Ellie Goulding". Daily Mail. 24 February 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  17. ^ "Sunderland legend's daughter is up for a Brit award". Sunderland Echo. 22 February 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  18. ^ ""To be nominated for best British single and be against…Adele with her song Hello has really blown me away" – Janée Bennett". Northern Lights. 23 February 2016. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  19. ^ "1984–85". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  20. ^ "1985–86". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  21. ^ "1986–87". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  22. ^ "1987–88". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  23. ^ "1988–89". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  24. ^ "1989–90". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  25. ^ "1990–91". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  26. ^ "1991–92". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  27. ^ "1992–93". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  28. ^ "1993–94". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  29. ^ "1994–95". Stat Cat. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  30. ^ "Gary Bennett". Soccerbase. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  31. ^ "Matches played by Gary Bennett 1996/97". Soccerbase. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  32. ^ "Matches played by Gary Bennett 1997/98". Soccerbase. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  33. ^ "Matches played by Gary Bennett 1998/99". Soccerbase. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  34. ^ "Matches played by Gary Bennett 1999/00". Soccerbase. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  35. ^ "Matches played by Gary Bennett 2001/02". Soccerbase. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  36. ^ "Gary Bennett". Soccerbase. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 

External links[edit]