It’s time for the second collection of nominees that you, the Stacey West readers, have put forward as the worst Lincoln City signing ever.
Before you scroll down, a repeat of the housekeeping bits from yesterday.
I’m not attempting to say these footballers were bad; some of them had really good careers, appearing in the top flight, European football and even for their country. What we’re looking for is the worst signing Lincoln City made, based on their arrival and their time here. I urge you to remember that; a player we paid big money for is, by definition, a worse signing than some poor lad we grabbed from Northwich when we were skint. A player who didn’t play at all can’t possibly be a worse signing than one who shipped five goals on his only appearance, can he? I guess that’s for you to decide.
Also, for those saying we shouldn’t focus on negatives, this is actually a positive article. I want people to read some of the players’ names on here and perhaps think on when they call this summer the ‘worst window ever’. It really isn’t, and we’ve had some truly awful signings over the last forty years, which is the time period these players have been pulled from. By the way, if I missed your player, my apologies, but everyone put them on different social media channels, not in the website comments and I really haven’t had the time to scour all the different groups. Also, as much as Chris Sutton boiled my wee as well, he just doesn’t count as he was a manager, not a signing.
If you are a player featured on here, please don’t take offence. Look at it like this; I once worked for a company called Timber Stair Manufacturers. I did it during a time of immense emotional turmoil and I felt I’d given it my best shot. To be fair, I was awful, and I’m sure Dave at the company wouldn’t be as bold as to say so. However, the people I served, those whose stairs I measured, would say otherwise. They’d be right, whatever the circumstances. Nobody is saying you were a bad player, just that when you played for Lincoln, someone felt you were (not necessarily me btw).
Also, some of the nominees just don’t deserve to be on the list! Anyhow, here are the nine players in Group B. To make it fair, I’ve randomised the groups to include players from across different ages. Have a read, and pick the worst at the bottom. I’ll try to do a group per day and only tot up the results at the end of the voting. I’d say ‘enjoy’, but I doubt you will, somehow.
Kevin Gall – 11 Apps, 0 Goals
I had a misconception about Gall; when he signed for us I thought he’d been prolific wherever he played. He hadn’t, but that didn’t stop me from thinking he could be for us. He bagged 13 goals in 11 matches for Yeovil at the end of the 2002/03 season, including four in a 6-1 demolition of Burton, and that must have stuck in my mind. He was one of the Magnificent Seven (the only one to make this list I think) and is perhaps a harsh inclusion as he was only a loan signing for us. He wasn’t good though, he ran a lot, but so did I as Poacher before a game and nobody gave me a start.
Ali Fuesini 35 Apps, 1 Goal
Fuseini was signed by Steve Tilson, and on paper, he was a good capture. He’d played more than 70 times for Millwall at a level above ours, and he seemed to be a cracking signing. We might not have paid a fee for him, but he wasn’t on peanuts at City, although you wouldn’t have guessed given his input. He was poor, playing a role in our relegation by turning up, wearing the shirt and doing very little. He did score for City, a header against Gateshead in late 2011, but after Tilson left, Fuseini never played for the club again. I guess that proves every silver lining can have an even thicker silver lining.
Elliot Parish 9 Apps, 0 Goals
Parish should never have had to play for us. Time has dulled my anger for him, if I’m honest. He was a boy, thrust into the limelight by Trevor Carson’s recall to Sunderland. Don’t get me wrong; he was awful for us, making his debut as we were hammered 6-0 at home, and shipping 23 goals in his nine appearances. He had no command of his area, a wafer-thin defence to rely on and weak hands. What brings me to the verge of tears is that Joe Anyon was on the bench for six of Parish’s nine Imps appearances, so in my mind, Steve Tilson was as much to blame for a young Elliot looking like a deer in headlights as anything.
Josh O’Keefe 50 Apps, 5 Goals
Look, I didn’t rate Josh that highly, but if he gets into double figures here it will be a travesty. He didn’t cost us anything (as far as I’m aware), and he chipped in with a few goals. This is what you get when you open a poll up to people, much of their choice is probably perception rather than based on any fact. The truth is, if we did a top five worst footballers from the 2010/11 season, Josh O’Keefe still wouldn’t be in it, let alone one from across the ages.
Riccardo Calder 2 Apps, 0 Goals
Calder was a classic Danny Cowley winter window signing; a player brought in to cover, not to perform any major tasks. Calder played twice for the Imps, once as we went out of the FA Trophy against York City, and again in our 0-0 game the week after we won the National League title. He wasn’t expensive, he wasn’t particularly bad, but he was sentenced to nine months in prison for a road rage attack a couple of years ago. I suspect that’s why he’s made the list.
Tyrell Waite 6 Apps, 0 Goals
I’d say Waite’s inclusion is harsh. Sure, he wasn’t up to the standard we needed, but was a free transfer from Notts County really a bad signing? He didn’t break through at his parent club, came to us on loan and then joined permanently. He put in six goalless performances before having his contract cancelled and moving to Sweden.
Peter Daniel – 35 Apps, 2 Goals
Peter Daniel played 11 times for England Under 21s, and won the League Cup in 1980, assisting with a goal that helped beat European Champions Nottingham Forest. That’s quite a CV, so when he rocked up at City there were high expectations. In may 1985 he played in the League Cup final, and just a couple of months later joined City. Like many on the list, he joined a poor team at a bad time, and could only help us towards relegation despite his obvious pedigree. The following season he took over as manager and was in charge during the calamitous collapse which saw us relegated to the Conference.
Kevin Hulme – 5 Apps, 0 Goals
To whoever suggested Hulme, we played and damn you. I’d put out of my mind this bit of business; swapping Dean West, an academy graduate of immense promise, for Hulme. He was utterly woeful for the Imps, playing five non-descript games and never looking comfortable. West went on to win awards with Burnely and establish himself as one of the finest full backs outside the top flight. Hulme went to play for Halifax and York. When it comes to worst transfer decisions ever, this has got to be one of them. I don’t want to influence your voting, but this would have been like swapping Alex Woodyard for Tom Champion during the National League season, only worse because Woodyard wasn’t one of our own.
Trevor Hebberd 33 Apps, 0 Goals
Hebberd is another who came in with a huge amount of expectation on his shoulders. He was part of the Oxford team that rose from the Third Division to the First, winning two titles in that time, and he bagged the opening goal in the 1986 League Cup final as Oxford beat QPR 3-0. He was named Man of the Match at Wembley, then moved to Derby who finished fifth in the top flight. Of course, by the time he arrived with us he was a spent force, despite his pedigree. He played 33 times for City, 33 too many.