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Ian Gayle Signs On At Invicta

We are pleased to announce that our fourth signing of the close season is Central Defender Ian Gayle. He finished last season at Cray Valley PM where he was a teammate of Nathan Green, although he was on a dual registration with National League South Eastbourne Borough.


Ian, who is aged 29 and six feet tall, started in the youth system at Dagenham & Redbridge in 2010 as a scholar, and in March 2011, he joined United Counties League Premier Division side St Neots Town on a youth loan, making his debut for the club against Boston Town when he came on as a substitute in a 3–2 win. His first start for the club came in a 5–2 win over Newport Pagnell Town, with his final appearance being in an 8–1 away win against Cogenhoe United, as St Neots Town clinched the League Title.


In May 2011, he completed his scholarship at Dagenham & Redbridge and progressed into the First Team after being offered a one-year contract by Manager John Still, with the option of a further year’s extension. In August 2011, Ian joined Isthmian League Division One North side Grays Athletic on a short-term loan  with an option to extend, but he only made one appearance before returning to ‘The Daggers’. In October 2011, he then joined Isthmian League Premier Division Kingstonian on loan until the end of the season, with his debut coming in the 3–0 away defeat at A.F.C. Hornchurch, when he came on as a substitute. He actually  scored in his first starting appearance for the club, a 3–1 Isthmian League Cup defeat against Margate.


In the summer of 2012, Ian signed a one-year contract extension with ‘The Daggers’, and in August 2012, he once again went out on loan, this time to Conference North side Histon until January 2013, making his debut for the club in a 4–1 home defeat against Guiseley. In October 2012, his loan spell ended, and he returned to Dagenham & Redbridge after picking up an injury playing in a training match for his parent club. In January 2013, Gayle re-joined Isthmian League Premier Division side Kingstonian on loan, before in March, his loan was extended until the end of the season with his final game of the loan spell coming in a 2-2 draw against Leiston.


In the summer of 2013, he was set to be released, however he impressed in pre-season games against Charlton Athletic and Crystal Palace and signed a three-month contract in August with a possible further extension, although in November 2013, he returned to Grays Athletic on an initial one-month deal, and in December 2013, his loan was extended for a further month, with his final appearance for Grays Athletic coming in a 3–2 away defeat to Dulwich Hamlet. The following month, Ian returned to ‘The Daggers’ after his loan spell had been blighted by injuries, before, in February 2014, he was on the move again, this time  joining Conference South side Whitehawk on a one-month loan deal, before he finally made his Dagenham & Redbridge Football League debut in a 2–0 defeat against Wycombe Wanderers in April 2014, replacing Matthew Saunders as a substitute. He went on to make a further three League appearances as the club finished in the top half of the table, and he signed a new one-year contract until 2015.


After finding it difficult to break into the first team, in November 2014 he went to Conference South side St Albans City on an initial one-month, and in December 2014 that loan was extended for a further month, before his final game for St Albans City came in a 1-1 draw with Basingstoke Town in February 2015. He then returned to ‘The Daggers’ at the end of the month, before re-joining St Albans City on an initial one-month loan in August 2015. In November of the same year, he moved on to National League South side Bishop's Stortford on a one-month loan deal, before, in February 2016, he joined National League side Welling United on loan until the end of the season along with then teammate Ade Yusuff. In May 2016, as his contract expired, he was released along with eleven players as Dagenham & Redbridge were relegated to the National League, but he stayed in the same League as he joined Braintree Town on a free transfer following his release by ‘The Daggers’ and on the opening day of the season, he went onto make his debut during their 0–0 draw with North Ferriby United, playing the full 90 minutes. Due to injury, his playing time was limited at the National League side, and he featured twenty-three more times before joining Welling United in June 2017, prior to moving on to Wealdstone in January 2018.


In June 2018, following his release from Wealdstone, Ian joined recently relegated Woking, and on the opening day of the 2018/19 season, he made his debut during their 1–0 away victory over East Thurrock United, featuring for the entire 90 minutes, and then three days later, he scored his first goal for his new club, netting the winner in their 2–1 home victory against one of his former clubs, St Albans City. Ian then moved onto National League South Eastbourne Borough for the start of the 2019/20 season and towards the end of last season, he joined Cray Valley PM on a dual registration.


Ian also has a famous relative, as he is a cousin of ‘Universe Boss’ Chris Gayle the West Indian cricketer, and surely the best T20 batsman to have played the game.


Neil said: “Again, another vastly experienced signing who I’m delighted to have added to our squad, as not only will Ian add competition for places in the defensive positions but will also give us other options when picking the team.”     

Welcome to the BuildKent Stadium Ian!