David Ephraim Holt
We were deeply saddened to learn of the passing of David Holt at the age of 75.
David was one of a number of young lads who arrived at Ewood Park from the north-east in the early sixties. The blond-haired centre-half broke into the Central League team during the closing stages of the 1963-64 season, having featured in that season’s FA Youth Cup for the club and became a regular with the reserves early in the 1964-65 campaign, helping the club to win the Central League title for the first time in its history that season.
A stylish defender, David seemed to have a bright future ahead of him and he gained something of a reputation as a penalty specialist – scoring 13 spot kicks for the reserves during the 1965-66 season.
David made his first team debut at Bramall Lane on 29th March 1966 when the Rovers slipped to a 2-0 defeat against Sheffield United and then made five appearances in quick succession but, sadly, he came into a team that was destined for relegation.
The departure of Mike England, in the summer of 1966, opened the door for David and his fellow north-easterner, Dick Mulvaney, to claim a first team spot. Initially, the centre-half position went to Mulvaney but when he perforated an ear drum in a League Cup-tie against Barrow, opportunity beckoned for David.
David appeared in five League games during September and early October 1966 and one League Cup-tie. However, once again, he came into a team that was beginning to struggle to put a winning run together. After a 2-0 defeat at Coventry City on 15th October 1966, David’s final senior appearance for the club, Jack Marshall opted to use Ben Anderson at centre-half. Eventually, the manager settled on a pairing of Ronnie Clayton and George Sharples in the centre of defence and David returned to the reserves, where he made ten appearances that season as they clinched a second Central League title.
David’s final appearance for the club came in a 3-2 away win against West Bromwich Albion reserves on 5th November 1966 before announcing a few days later that he had decided to leave football to work with his father-in-law.
When David decided to call time on his footballing career he had made 11 first team appearances for the Rovers.
As well as football, David was a very good cricketer and golfer.
The Blackburn Rovers Former Players Association wish to express their deepest sympathy to David’s family and friends at this sad time.