Godfrey, Brian

Birth Date

1st May 1940

Birthplace

Flint

Occupation

Manager

Biographical Text

With the Exeter side well placed in the Third Division, the directors lost no time in replacing Bobby Saxton. Indeed, only nine days had elapsed before they obtained the services of Brian Godfrey. The new manager’s credentials were excellent as had the previous season steered Bath City to the championship of the Southern League.

Born at Flint, North Wales, Godfrey had turned professional with Everton in 1958 and made a total of 557 League appearances with Scunthorpe, Preston, Aston Villa, Bristol Rovers and Newport Country over a playing career which spanned 18 years. With such a fine playing record and his achievement with Bath City, the Exeter City directors were confident that they had made the right choice.

Indeed, Godfrey did not fail to meet their expectations – City finished ninth at the end of his first season and eighth in the next 0. This was truly a position which could be regarded as their highest ever in the Football League. In addition, Godfrey accomplished a good bit of business in buying Tony Kellow back from Blackpool for £65,000, 16 months after they had paid City $105,000 for his transfer. Moreover, it was precisely Kellow who led City to the sixth round of the FA Cup for only the second time in their history.

On the other hand, the loss of such players as Johnny Hore, Colin Randell and Steve Neville left gaps which proved difficult to fill. Five weeks after the club had narrowly escaped relegation to the Fourth Division in 1982-3, Godfrey decided to quit with a year of his contract still to run. He subsequently returned to manage Bath City and later Weymouth.

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