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👤 1989/90 player profiles: Dave Walter

Profiling the championship winning side on the 30th anniversary of the title

27 April 2020

April 28, 1990, remains one of the finest days in Exeter City's history as, on the back of an incredible home record, we secured our first title in our club's history. During this month we will be taking a look back - in alphabetical order - of the main players in that title winning side. This time we look at a reliable and versatile player who made 20 appearances during the title winning campaign.


While Kevin Miller's command of the penalty box means that he is most often remembered as our title-winning keeper, there was another custodian who played his role as City’s last line of defence in the 1989/90 season. 

Dave Walter was playing part-time football for Bideford whilst working on his farm, when he was signed by Exeter City in November 1988, initially on a one-week trial. 

He went straight into the first team replacing Mel Gwinnett as keeper, and made his debut against Colchester United in a 3-2 win at Layer Road. 

Later that season he would share the role with the up-and-coming Miller, but going into the 1989/90 campaign Dave was selected as the first choice keeper for our championship challengers. 

The opening day win over Doncaster Rovers seemed to prove that Terry Cooper had made the right call, as Dave’s performance was described as “immaculate” by the Express & Echo, beneath a headline that read “Walter and Neville star”. 

Three consecutive clean sheets and more headline grabbing performances soon followed, but having played in the first 18 league matches, Dave was eventually replaced by Kevin Miller who went on to make the number one shirt his own. 

Having lost his spot, Dave signed for Plymouth Argyle for £10,000 in July 1990 and made 15 league appearances in two seasons at Home Park. He then joined Torquay United in June 1992, and became one of a select group of players to have played for all three of Devon’s Football League club’s, when he made his one and only appearance for the Gulls. 

Dave continued his West Country journey with Saltash United in 1993/94, before also playing for Holsworthy, Torrington, and his village side Putford before finally only playing in charity matches after 2008/09. 

This article has been created using material from the Grecian Archive and ECFC Museum as part of the 'Celebrating our Heritage' programme, funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and supported by the University of Exeter. 

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