Ian Benjamin - best-known for his time at Southend, Northampton and Peterborough - made a dozen appearances during Exeter City’s 1989/90 championship season prior to leaving the club before the end of the season.
Ian began his playing career with Sheffield United and, after three goals in just five league matches, moved to West Bromwich Albion for £100,000 in August 1979. Making just two appearances for Albion, Ian joined Notts County in February 1982 and - having not featured whilst at Meadow Lane - was soon on his way to Peterborough United in August 1982. With his career taking off at London Road, Ian netted 14 goals in 80 league outings ahead of a move to Northampton Town in August 1984 where he enjoyed the most productive period of his career scoring 58 times in 150 league matches.
Less-successful spells had followed at Cambridge United and Chester City when Ian, now twenty-seven, arrived at St James’ Park in February 1989. Quickly making his debut against Darlington on 4 February 1989 he was an immediate success as he made twenty appearances notching three goals during what remained of 1988/89.
Playing infrequently during the first few months of City’s 1989/90 championship season Ian had a run of a dozen games in December, January and February before citing the difficulties of maintaining a house in Cambridge as a reason for joining Southend United towards the end of February 1990.
Returning to St James’ Park for the game when the Grecians clinched promotion by beating Southend in April 1990, Ian went on to make 122 league appearances for the Shrimpers scoring 33 goals along the way. Thereafter he had relatively brief stints at Luton Town, Brentford and Wigan Athletic as his professional career drew to a halt in May 1996.
Ian went on to work for the Royal Mail and, continuing to live in the Cambridge area, managed Corby Town, Worboys Town, Soham Town Rangers, Wisbech Town and Soham again in the years up to 2011. Then, after working as a youth coach for Northampton Town and scouting for Swindon Town, he returned to management with Yaxley and Stewart's & Lloyd (Corby).