The Football League Paper - - NEWS -

STEVE­NAGE boss Gra­ham West­ley be­lieves 29-year-old Dean Wells has jus­ti­fied his gam­ble to of­fer the de­fender a path back to pro­fes­sional foot­ball after a decade in ex­ile.

Wells, who was work­ing as a school care­taker while play­ing last term for Brain­tree, had been ply­ing his trade in non-league foot­ball after be­ing re­leased by Brent­ford in 2004 hav­ing made just a soli­tary first-team ap­pear­ance.

The cen­tral de­fender, who was sentenced to one year in prison in 2011 after be­ing caught up in an or­gan­ised brawl be­tween Brent­ford and Ley­ton Ori­ent sup­port­ers, de­scribed his switch to Steve­nage as “life-chang­ing” upon sign­ing in the sum­mer.

West­ley be­lieves Wells has shown he is more than ca­pa­ble of hold­ing his own in League Two.

He said: “Wells has had a ter­rific sea­son so far. He has done so much learn­ing. He is a player that has made mis­takes but he has come back stronger,

“He has evolved into a player that will have a big ca­reer and a pro­gres­sive ca­reer, even though he started late in the Foot­ball League.”

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