Former Chester City striker Steve Finney has sadly passed away at the age of 48 after a short illness.
Steve was playing part-time football for Barrow when he was given an opportunity to return to the Football League by Terry Smith who signed him for Chester in October 1999.
He went on to make 13 Football League appearances, including nine from the bench, and was one of the players retained by Graham Barrow for the first season in the Conference. Alongside Paul Carden he was the only player to start the last game in the Football League, against Peterborough, and the first fixture in the Conference, against Rushden and Diamonds, and he made a further four starts and five substitute appearances before being released in late 2000.
Born in Hexham Steve started his career as a youth player with Preston North End and went on to make his Football League debut for the Lancashire side in the 1991/92 season. He had the most successful spell of his footballing career at Swindon Town after joining from Manchester City in summer 1995. A goal on his debut, against Hull City, immediately endeared him to supporters and he went on to score 16 goals as Swindon were promoted to the second tier.
After representing Cambridge United, Carlisle United and Leyton Orient Steve dropped into part-time football with Gretna and Barrow but after circulating his CV to north west clubs he was contacted by Terry Smith who brought him to the Deva Stadium in 1999. He made his debut, as a substitute, in a 4-1 defeat at Lincoln but after featuring in the next seven games he was only used intermittently during the rest of the campaign.
For the first season in the Conference Steve started the first three games before dropping to the role of substitute and the signing of Steve Whitehall marked the end of his City career. His final match proved to be a Nationwide Variety Club Trophy match against Hednesford Town before a move to Altrincham after a successful loan spell.
At the time of his death he was part of the management team with Ullswater United in the Westmorland League.
The club send out their condolences to his family and friends.