Player recollections: Dale Milne

Dale Milne (left – white) in action for Prestatyn Town at Bastion Gardens back in the 1990’s. Photo kindly supplied by Mark Jones

Dale Milne was best known as a dynamic goalscoring midfielder for Prestatyn Town, mainly in the 1990’s and 2000’s.

Here, he shares some of his career recollections with Grassroots North Wales.

Which clubs did you play for in your career?

I was at Liverpool as a kid then played for Crewe Alexandra.

I played for Prestatyn at 15, Mostyn, Llandudno, back to Town for a number of years, Bangor City, Rhyl, Conwy United.

Then it was back to Town for another few years.

Tell us about the Prestatyn Town teams you played for. Which do you rate as the best?

The Prestatyn invincibles of 2005-06. Back (l-r): Adie Hayes (physio), Jon Fisher-Cooke, Jack Lewis, Jon Hill-Dunt, Steve Jones (chairman), Neil Gibson, Russ Jones, Bevan Humphreys, Gari Thomas, Michael Parker, Craig Griffiths, Martyn Jones (assistant manager) Front (l-r): Dave Fuller, Dale Milne, Ian Griffiths, Stephen Bowes, Peter Evans, Stephen Hoult. Front (with trophy): Dave Hayes.

I played in many teams at Prestatyn with so many wonderful players, many who were not playing at the level they should have, but who wanted to play for their local team.

I was so lucky to play for many years at Town alongside so many great lads and many, many great footballers.

All the teams I played for were very successful, unfortunately I just can’t put them all down.

The best team I played with at PTFC was the year we went unbeaten (Welsh Alliance champions 2005-06).

Dave Fuller and Martyn Jones built a great team of lads who all played for each other. We had some great players, many should have been playing much higher standard.

Who was the best player you played alongside?

30 Sep 2000: Gary Twynham of Macclesfield Town in action during the Nationwide League Division Three match against Chesterfield at the Recreation Ground in Chesterfield. Picture by Paul Broadrick. \ Mandatory Credit: Allsport UK /Allsport

Gary Twynham.

He played for Man United for a reason. He was amazing and an athlete with it.

Who rates as your toughest opponent?

The toughest to play against were probably Stuart Hannen or Graham Hunter.

They were both masters in the art of kicking me, both were very tough

I played a lot of five-a-side with Stu and I soon toughened up.

What were your strengths and weaknesses as a player?

My strengths were probably scoring a fair few goals from central midfield as I did have an eye for goal. I was a good tackling midfielder, but my weakness was probably tactical defending.

I used to just go everywhere I wanted in games and I probably would leave my midfield partner with two men to mark.

I played with Steve Bowen for a few years and the man was an unbelievable footballer.

He used to do all my work and probably mark two lads out of a game most games.

He was one of the most underrated lads I played with as he was just a brilliant game player.

I played some of my best football alongside Bow and I loved every game.

What is your most memorable game?

Most memorable game was when we played Denbigh Town who were 2/3 levels higher than us.

It was a semi-final and I had broken my 3 toes on my right foot (I’m right footed) the day earlier.

I always did well against Denbigh and the keeper and I didn’t get on.

So after lots of pain relief I was up for an early corner and he stamped on my toes – that instantly wiped out the pain relief…

From the next corner I scored in the top corner with a left footed volley. 1-0

Then I got the ball again at the edge of the box and scored another cracker, again left foot. 2-0

Then just before half time the ball came to me from a clearance and I hit it as sweet as a nut again into the other top corner. 3-0

I then had to go off just before half-time but as I left the field I got a rapturous applause from all the Denbigh supporters.

The lads hung on to win 3-2 and we went on to lift the trophy.

Do any of your kids play football or any close family members making their way in the game?

Got a son who is rugby mad and is now travelling the world. He’s currently in Canada skiing. Never interested in football. And I have a daughter who dislikes it, she just wants to dance.

So unfortunately no football from the family. Probably a good thing as I’d be a nightmare with them..😂

You recently helped out Prestatyn Sports. Please tell us what you did with the club

Dale (furthest right) lines up with Prestatyn Sports Under-12’s. His company DHM Construction has sponsored goals for the team. Here is what Prestatyn Sports said about Dale: “As a club last year we had a problem of our 12’s needing 9v9 goals to compete in their league. We had a very generous donation from the council for half the money and as a club decided to crowd fund the rest. Dale saw our plight and instantly gave us all the money to purchase the goals so the kids wouldn’t go without. A true gentleman and footballing man.”

I (DHM Construction) have always tried to help local teams with sponsorship.

I’ve done it for a few years and would always be looking to help

I believe the work Sports have done in the past and currently are doing is bloody amazing.

They all pull in the same direction and I wish them all the success in the future.

How has the suspension of football due to coronavirus affected you? How have you coped with having less football in your life?

I do love to watch football and after a very long time my team (Liverpool) won the league so the gap in the football was a nice one to just be able to take in what they achieved.

The virus has had a huge effect on many people but luckily my family haven’t been hit by it in any way.

I’m just thankful that we are coming out of it all now and hope to get back to what we call normality.

Who is your all-time football hero and why?

My all-time football hero is my first football manager at Prestatyn Wanderers – Mr Dave Taylor.

He just made me love football through his enthusiasm for the game. He made me captain of a great team and really brought myself and all the lads up from a young age. We are all better men for having his influence in our lives.

I loved king Kenny Dalglish. He was just a great, great player.

I used to watch him for hours and hours, just to try and learn from the way he played.

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