Former Yeovil Town goalkeeper Chris Weale spoke to BBC Radio Shropshire on Friday 5th April 2013, ahead of his return to Huish Park as a Shrewsbury Town player. Chris is asked about what his greatest memories were about winning the Conference title with Yeovil Town ten years ago.
CW: It was probably the atmosphere, I'd say. I remember early on we were quite a few points ahead in the League, and we got promoted around this time ten years ago. So it was quite early on in the season to get promoted. I just remember the atmosphere at the stadium being very good. For a small club like Yeovil we were getting big attendances, compared to the ground capacity. It was just a great feeling for me. I was only young, as I was just 21 years old. So it was great for me to be playing at a young age.
Qu: It was your hometown club as well, wasn't it?
CW: Yes, I was born in Yeovil, and then went to the Centre of Excellence, and then played in the Youth Team, and then signed professionally. Dave Webb signed me as a professional, and so I give quite a lot of thanks to him for spotting me in the Youth Team and giving me a chance. He said that I'd got talent and that he'd like to play me. It was just the situation that he left quite early on in the season during my first year. He obviously could see the talent that I had.
Then obviously Gary (Johnson) came in as manager at the start of my second year. I remember sitting in Palmer's Fish and Chip Shop, which is quite a well known fish and chip shop in Yeovil, in Dave Webb's car, as he wanted to take me to Southend. It was in the close season at the end of my first year. I said that I liked Yeovil - obviously I was born in Yeovil, and I wanted to play for Yeovil. So I wanted to hear what Gary Johnson had to say, and then I'd give him a decision. I met Gary, and then said to Gary, I want to be your Number One goalkeeper - and he looked at me and thought who the hell are you! But because of the love and the passion that I had for Yeovil, I wanted to stay at Yeovil and play, and obviously I managed to force my way in.
Qu: It must have been the fish and chips as well!
CW: Obviously, yes! I don't think Dave Webb was too happy. But I'm sure he won't care now.
Qu: And they've done really well since then, haven't they?
CW: Yes, fantastically well over the last years. They got to Wembley under Russell Slade, and almost got to the Championship. They're doing well this season, and Terry Skiverton has done extremely well to keep them up for three or four years in League One. And Gary is doing well there now.
Qu: And what a coincidence that the tenth anniversary should be on the day that Yeovil are playing your current club Shrewsbury Town.
CW: There's no such thing as coincidences is there? (laughs) I don't know, it's just the way that things happen. It is nice. The ex-players are having a walk around at half time, and then we've got a meal on Sunday, as a get-together to remember the ten years. So it will be nice to see the old team-mates, and I'm looking forward to that.
Back to Top of Page