Leeds United F.C. History
Leeds United F.C. History : Foreword
1919-29 - The Twenties
1930-39 - The Thirties
1939-46 - The War Years
1947-49 - Post War Depression
1949-57 - The Reign of King John
1957-63 - From Charles to Revie
1961-75 - The Revie Years
1975-82 - The Downward Spiral
1982-88 - The Dark Years
1988-96 - The Wilko Years
1996-04 - The Rollercoaster Ride
2004-17 - Down Among The Deadmen
100 Greatest LUFC Players Ever
Greatest Leeds United Games
Players' Profiles
Managers' Profiles
Leeds City F.C. History
Leeds City F.C. Player and Manager Profiles
Leeds United/City Statistics
Leeds United/City Captains
Leeds United/City Friendlies and Other Games
Leeds United/City Reserves and Other Teams

Wetherall: David

1991-1999 (Player Details)

Centre Half

Born: Sheffield: 14-03-1971

Debut: Arsenal (h) (Substitute): 03-09-1991

6’3” 13st 12lb (1996)

#57 in 100 Greatest LUFC Players Ever

Wetherall played for Sheffield Boys and after a fourteen-month lay-off with an injured knee turned out for Middlewood Rovers before joining Sheffield Wednesday, where he won three Under-Nineteen caps, and featured in the British Universities side which won a bronze medal in the World Student Games in Sheffield. Howard Wilkinson saw potential in Wetherall’s play at England Schools’ level, where he was captain, and signed him for Sheffield Wednesday in July 1989 but he did not make a senior appearance for the Owls. After Wilkinson had joined Leeds and with Sheffield Wednesday pondering over the future of Wetherall and fellow young defender Jon Newsome, Wilkinson pounced and signed the pair for Leeds for £250,000. It was to prove a wise double investment as Newsome was sold to Norwich City a few years later for £1 million, and Wetherall became a regular at the heart of the Leeds defence before being ultimately sold to Bradford City for £1.4 million. Wetherall was not rushed into football and completed his chemistry degree at Sheffield University in 1992 before becoming a Leeds regular. He was still a student when he tasted senior football for the first time. After winning a place on the bench at Old Trafford the week before, the big defender came on towards the end of the next home game with Arsenal in September 1991. It was his only slice of action in the title campaign, but Leeds fans had seen a glimpse of the future. He became a firm favourite with the fans and scored some vital goals, particularly against Manchester United at Elland Road. However, after he became Bradford City's record buy when he joined the club for a fee of £1.4m in July 1999, after turning down the chance to join both Huddersfield Town and Southampton, he scored a goal that was extremely vital for Leeds United. City went into the final game of the 1999-2000 season facing possible, almost certain, relegation and after only twelve minutes of that final game against Liverpool, Wetherall headed home a Gunnar Halle free-kick. City held on for a 1–0 win and with Wimbledon's defeat at Southampton, Bradford stayed up with a then record low of thirty-six points. But it also meant that with everyone believing that a Liverpool win was a mere formality, Leeds were hugely grateful to be able to pip Liverpool for third play and so enter the lucrative ECL and go on to famously reach the Semi-Final of the competition as England’s final representative in that season’s competition. Having played every single minute of the 1999/2000 campaign it was fitting that he should score the goal that gave Bradford City a second season in the top flight. Given the captain's armband in 2002 following the departure of Stuart McCall, Wetherall was a faithful servant of Bradford City throughout the turbulence of the next few years and Julian Rhodes rewarded this loyalty with the role of Caretaker Manager as they fought, unsuccessfully, to avoid relegation into League Two. Wetherall played every minute of every game for the Valley Paraders until November 2000 when he was forced from the field at half-time against Derby County. A groin operation ensued which kept him out until February 2001, but just four games into his comeback he had a recurrence of the groin injury which ruled him out for the rest of the season as Bradford were relegated. His return was made in September of the 2001-02 season but another recurrence saw him soon sidelined for a further five months. Both Southampton and Manchester City were anxious for him to assist them in the EPL but Wetherall remained faithful to the Bantams and he played the last seven games of the season and was named captain for the following season. Wetherall was one of nineteen senior first-team players to be laid off by Chairman Geoffrey Richmond in May 2002 after the club was put into administration and the players unpaid since April. However, the club was saved, and players reinstated. A hip injury in the first game of the season saw Wetherall sidelined once more and after an attempted comeback in December failed it was February 2003 before he was able to play fifteen games in the final months of the season. He played the first fifteen games of the 2003-04 season before he was next ruled out by medial ligament problems for two months. Returning in late December he tried his hardest to help the Bantams avoid relegation but it was to no avail as they slipped into Division One. Despite Bradford’s financial plight he turned down an offer from Coventry City and pledged his allegiance to the Valley Paraders until the end of the 2007-08 season. He kept injury free in 2004-05, missing only one game. In October 2006, days after playing his two hundred and fiftieth game for Bradford, he signed a new deal keeping him at the club until 2010 with a clause allowing him to move into a coaching role when his playing career ended or continue playing beyond 2010. Wetherall was made Caretaker Manager and relinquished the Captain’s armband when Colin Todd was sacked in February 2007, but on Stuart McCall’s appointment as Manager in June 2007 he was reinstated as Captain. On 20th February 2008 he announced that 2007–08 would be his last as a player, although Bradford City would keep his registration, and instead he would join the club's coaching staff. He played his final game for Bradford against Wycombe Wanderers on 3rd May 2008. While at Valley Parade, Wetherall scored eighteen goals in three hundred and one League starts and another three from the bench, and also scored three times in twenty-six starts in Cup and other competitions. Wetherall holds the UEFA ‘B’ coaching licence and completed his ‘A’ licence during the summer of 2008, then he returned to the Bradford City coaching set up. He started as Manager of the Reserve team and then combined that with managing the Youth set-up.

League 188/1412
F.A. Cup 21/34
League Cup 19/12
Europe 40