Gary Swann

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Gary Swann
Personal information
Date of birth (1962-04-11) 11 April 1962 (age 55)
Place of birth York, England
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Playing position Full back, Midfield
Club information
Current team
Cuckfield Town
Youth career
1978–1980 Hull City
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1980–1986 Hull City 186 (9)
1986–1992 Preston North End 199 (37)
1992–1994 York City 82 (4)
1994–1995 Scarborough 27 (3)
Teams managed
2002–? Cuckfield Town
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Gary Swann (born 11 April 1962 in York, England) is an English former professional footballer.


Born in York, Yorkshire, Swann started his career as a trainee with Hull City.[citation needed] In eight years at Boothferry Park, he made his name as an attacking full back and whose quick footballing brain was a great asset to the team.[citation needed] He played 221 games for the club, scoring 10 goals, helping the club promotion in both the 1982–83 and 1985–86 seasons.[citation needed]

It was in November 1986 however that Preston North End boss John McGrath offered City £10,000 to sign Swann.[citation needed] During his time at Deepdale, McGrath moved him into a more advanced midfield position (a position he had played occasionally at Hull), and he became an integral member of the Preston, team helping the club to promotion from the Fourth Division in his first season.[citation needed]

This hard working and often unsung player also had an uncanny knack of scoring vitally important goals from either his usual midfield position or from full back; his biggest haul of 14 (12 in the league) in 1987–88 season helping keep Preston in the Third Division.[citation needed] Likened to former Liverpool full back Chris Lawler his goalscoring prowess also earned him the nickname "The Ghost" due to his ability to appear almost unnoticed at the far post to score, something that soon became his trademark.[citation needed] He was also an ever-present in both the 1987–88 and 1989–90 seasons, finishing runner-up in the club's official player of the year awards on both occasions to Bob Atkins and Warren Joyce respectively.[citation needed] In all, Swann played 250 first team games for Preston, scoring 47 goals, and considering that he never took a penalty nor played as a striker, this is quite an achievement in a side that generally underachieved.[citation needed]

At the end of the 1991–92 season, he was released and immediately signed for home town club York City.[citation needed] He helped them to promotion in his first season by scoring the winner in the 2nd leg of their semi final against Bury and then scoring the opening goal in the Third Division play-off final against Crewe Alexandra at Wembley Stadium, a game City won on penalties after drawing 1–1.[citation needed] He also impressed in his second season with the club, helping York reach the play-offs yet again, where they were knocked out in the semi-final.[citation needed]

After a highly successful two years at Bootham Crescent, in which he played 95 games, scoring six goals, he moved on to Scarborough (35 games four goals) for a season before playing in Hong Kong and finally returning to England so as to extend his playing career in non-League football.

In all Gary played 601 first team games scoring 67 goals.[citation needed]

After football[edit]

Gary now works as a leisure centre manager at Coral Reef, Bracknell.[citation needed] He previously worked as the manager at Guildford Spectrum leisure complex Surrey but is still playing regularly for Cuckfield Town in the Mid Sussex Football League Premier Division, a club he has been with since September 2000.[citation needed]

External links[edit]