Gary Neville admits Salford City missed out on transfer of Premier League star


Defender Charlie Goode is impressing in his first taste of the top flight with Brentford, but he could have been lining up for the Ammies had things turned out differently

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Gary Neville watches Salford win at Wembley days before sacking manager

Charlie Goode is enjoying life as he adapts to the rigours and demands of the Premier League.

The Brentford defender has made six appearances in the top flight this season, and has started the last four for Thomas Frank’s side.

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But had things panned out differently he could have been part of the Salford City project.

Salford’s co-owner and former Manchester United star Gary Neville revealed that the centre-half almost signed for the Ammies in the summer of 2019.

Speaking on Sky Sports in the build-up to Brentford’s win over Watford, Neville admitted his club missed out on signing him.

Neville, along with a clutch of his ex-United teammates including brother Phil and Paul Scholes purchased a controlling stake in the club in 2014.

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Gary Neville has revealed Salford came close to signing Charlie Goode two years ago

They have invested heavily, transforming the club’s infrastructure, turning them professional and guiding them into the EFL.

Neville says the club were in direct discussions with Goode’s agent when the centre-back was at Scunthorpe.

But at the last minute, just as a deal looked set to be done, Neville claims that Goode’s agent asked for more money and so the deal fell through.

Goode had been out on loan at Northampton in the first part of 2019 and after the Salford deal collapsed he would eventually return to Sixfields on a permanent basis in the summer.

He was installed as captain and would go on to play a vital role as Keith Curle’s side won promotion from League Two. They hammered Exeter City 4-0 at Wembley in the play-off final.

That would prove to be Goode’s last act at Northampton and he was signed in the summer of 2020 by Brentford for a six-figure fee.

He was limited to just eight league appearances last season as Brentford won promotion to the Premier League but he is now back to full fitness.

Friday’s win over Watford took Frank’s side to 20 points – ten clear of the relegation zone.

Goode helped Brentford secure a comeback win on Friday against Watford

As for Salford, they are in their third season in the Football League. They finished 11th in the first season, which was curtailed due to the pandemic.

They then fell short of the play-offs last season, finishing eighth.

This season they have started poorly and are currently 17th – eight points clear of the relegation places but nine adrift of the play-offs.

Saturday saw them lose 2-1 away at in-form Mansfield Town.

Manager Gary Bowyer said: “We scored a very good goal from a set piece and had another great opportunity.

“I thought for 30-35 minutes we controlled the game and we made them change their shape.

“But the game changed on a free kick when Theo Vassell was clearly fouled and the referee gave it the other way.

“That said, once it’s been given against us we have to defend it and it was an appalling goal to concede.

“To compound that we then go and concede another. They should not be able to score from there if we line the wall up proper.”

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