Matt Jay, captain of the 2021/22 promotion team, played 206 times for Exeter City scoring 54 goals. Matt, from Newton Abbot, was first associated with Exeter City at the age of eight and left for Colchester United eighteen years later.
Matt was seventeen when he made his first-team debut against Wycombe Wanderes in the EFL Trophy in September 2013. First team appearances were few and far between for several seasons and, in furthering his development, Matt enjoyed successful loan periods at Weston-super-Mare (2014/15), Hayes and Yeading United (2015/16) and Truro City (2015/16). His first Exeter City goal came against Oxford in the EFL Trophy in August 2016 although Matt’s first league goal was not until April 2018 at Cambridge United.
Matt was now starting to feature more prominently and spent almost twice as many minutes on the pitch in league games in 2018/19 than he did in 2017/18. He was to score four league goals in both 2018/19 and the truncated 2019/20 season. Matt was a non-playing substitute in the Wembley play-off defeat against Northampton Town in June 2020. Undaunted by that defeat, nor by the strangeness of games being played behind closed doors, Matt enjoyed a remarkable season in 2020/21 scoring eighteen goals in the league and two more in the cups. This tally included Matt’s first-ever hat-trick against Leyton Orient on 6 March 2021. Matt was duly named in various divisional teams of the year and was winner of both player of the year awards at Exeter City. Then, in 2021/22 and in his new-found role as captain, Matt added another fourteen goals in the league as City won promotion. Again he was named in the PFA’s divisional team of the year.
Although he scored in cup competitions in 2022/23 Matt found goalscoring a harder task in League One but had plenty to celebrate when he played his 200th game for City at Port Vale in the FA Cup in November 2022. But Matt was to soon leave Exeter City to join Colchester United for an undisclosed fee in January 2023.
Making his Colchester debut against Rochdale in January 2023, Matt started seven games during the remainder of the season and came on eleven times as substitute without opening his account for his new club.
League 165; Cups 41 (206)