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HISTORY OF T&MUFC 
CLUB LEGENDS

David Gabriel

David joined the Terrors at the start of the 1987-88 season and started in our Reserves as a forward and was soon on target in the Suburban League. After several impressive displays for the second team he moved up to the First Team and scored his first goal for them at Leytonstone & Ilford as we notched up a fine away victory at the Essex club.

 

‘Gabsy’ as he was better known was a very versatile player who could play in any position, he even played in goal for the second team when they were short of a goalkeeper. In the first team he normally took up a mid-field or full-back position, he was powerful in the tackle and very good in the air. In April 1991, he helped the reserves to victory in the Suburban League Champions Cup when we beat Windsor & Eton 5-2 over two legs. The second team also reached the Final of the Suburban League Cup in May 1991 going down 2-1 to Wokingham town, Dave scoring our consolation goal.

 

In the 1992-93 campaign the first team reached the Final of the Full Members Cup beating Dorking 1-0.  David received a winner’s medal being on the subs bench that day.

 

‘Gabsy’ was unlucky with injuries but the 1995-96 season saw him back to full fitness and in the opening league match he scored the only goal of the game at Berkhamsted Town. Dave also scored our final goal of that campaign and what an important strike it was as he came of the bench to score a late winner against Thame United to save us from relegation to Isthmian League Division Two amid joyful scenes at Sandy Lane. That was in fact ‘Gabsy’ last game for the club and what a fitting way to end his playing career with Tooting & Mitcham.

 

In all he played 223 games for us, with 43 on the bench and scored twenty goals. A true loyal stalwart of the club and much loved by the fans, he would often stay behind in the bar after a match and chat with the Tooting supporters. He was awarded a joint testimonial with David Taylor in 2002 the opening game at new home Imperial Fields against a Chelsea X1, just reward for his loyalty to the club.

David sadly passed away in December 2018.

Article written by Ian Bullock TMUFC Members Club Vice President

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