Dave Pover – a true Celtic legend
The likeable though - and he will admit this himself - sometimes truculent and awkward man of Carrbook has been with his hometown side for 20 seasons and has devoted his time selflessly to everything and everyone connected with the Tameside club.
“He is protective of the players he helps and unstinting in his praise of the players who follow his advice and, invariably, return to action much sooner than anticipated. Many have benefited from his healing hands – and his use of comfrey,” said Celtic chief executive Syd White.
A former fireman, Dave learned his healing and rehabilitation crafts with the service, working with the football and rugby union national teams in some exotic places: San Marino, Russia and Italy to name just three.
In addition to his time with Stalybridge, Dave has been a sports therapist with Glossop, Curzon Ashton, Ashton United and Leigh RMI. If you add in these games he has certainly been on the touchline at more than 1,500 semi-pro matches.
Dave has also attended countless reserves, academy and junior matches for Celtic and his other clubs, a truly astonishing record of service to footballers. He will offer his advice to anyone, anywhere, anytime to help them recover. He has time for everyone.
His first game with Stalybridge was a 1-0 win against Dagenham and Redbridge at the start of the 1993-94 season when Peter Wragg was the manager. He has worked with every manager since, from Wragg to current boss Liam Watson, a constant in the Bower Fold backroom team.
In recent years Dave has been mentoring young sports therapists and Celtic have benefited immensely from this support as have other clubs, who now enjoy the services of experienced personnel.
“From all of us at Celtic, and many beyond, thank you Dave for your devoted service to our club and our players and long may you continue.
“We are all immensely proud of you for this remarkable achievement,” said club chairman Rob Gorski.
By Martyn Torr