Clubs like Walsall donâ€™t find players like David W Preece very often.
David was born in Bridgnorth in Shropshire in 1963 and signed professional forms for the Saddlers in 1980, after a two year apprenticeship
He was a player who soon became a favourite with the fans, as local lads often do, but, in his case, it wasnâ€™t just his all action style of play which made him stand out, nor his shock of long, blond hair, but the fact that he had a touch of real class about him as well. It was his partnership with Craig Shakespeare which not only gave Third Division sides the run around, but also managed to dominate top flight teams during the League Cup run and the victory at Highbury and the draw at Anfield.
He made 111 appearances for Walsall, before being sold to Luton Town in 1984.in a deal which saw Steve Elliott come the other way and became a firm favourite there, winning a League Cup medal in 1988, as well as earning an England â€œBâ€ cap
David was one of the best home produced players I have seen play for the Saddlers in the forty odd years I have been watching. The news of his passing today after a heart attack, doubtless bought on by a battle against throat cancer, at the tragically early age of 44 is dreadful. At least the memories will live on.
David â€œMiniâ€ Preece, RIP.
A tribute to him from Luton fans can be found here: