Last updated : 06 February 2013 By Tony Scholes

Date and Place of Birth

30th October 1968 - HEXHAM


Transfers to and from Burnley

see below


First and Last Burnley Games

LINCOLN CITY (a) - 30th November 1989

sub: replaced Paul Atkinson


FRANCHISE (a) - 4th May 2003


Other Clubs







Transfers to and from Burnley 

 from SOUTHAMPTON - 21st November 1989 (loan)

returned - 21st February 1990


from SOUTHAMPTON - 17th August 1991 (£60,000)

to LUTON TOWN - 13th July 1995 (£750,000)


from LUTON TOWN - 30th December 1998 (£750,000)

released - 6th May 2003


Burnley Career Stats


Season League FA Cup League Cup Others Total
  apps gls apps gls apps gls apps gls apps gls
1989/90 7(2) - - - - - 1 - 8(2) -
1991/92 40 6 5 1 2 1 10 - 57 8
1992/93 37 2 5 - - - 2 - 44 2
1993/94 42 7 4 - 4 1 8 - 58 8
1994/95 43 7 4 - 4 - 3 - 54 7
1998/99 19 3 - - - - - - 19 3
1999/2000 42 7 4 - 1 - 1 - 48 7
2000/01 44 5 2 - 4 1 - - 50 6
2001/02 22(1) 1 - - 1 - - - 23(1) 1
2002/03 25(3) 4 0(1) - 3 1 - - 28(4) 5
Total 321(6) 42 24(1) 1 19 4 25 - 389(7) 47


Profile by Tony Scholes


Burnley manager Frank Casper was struggling to find central defenders towards the end of 1989 and when forced to field a side with Andy Farrell and Joe Jakub in the centre of defence for an FA Cup replay at Stockport he immediately strengthened his squad with a loan signing.

The player he brought in was 21-year-old Steve Davis from Southampton and his arrival immediately caused some confusion as the club captain at the time was Steve Davis, also a central defender.

The new Davis was still to play first team football but he got his debut at Lincoln, coming on as a substitute for Paul Atkinson. The captain missed that game but he was back a week later for the home game against Grimsby and the two of them played alongside each other in the centre of defence.

There never appeared to be any suggestion of a permanent move for Davis so it was no surprise when he went back after three months at Turf Moor having played nine games with two of them from the substitutes' bench.

He'd done well and made a good impression during his stay with fans and staff alike although no one could have known at the time that his Burnley career was anything but over.

Davis had already had links with Turf Moor before ever joining the club. It was scout Jack Hixon who recommended him to Southampton and down at the Dell he was brought through by former Claret Dave Merrington who was youth coach at the time.

On his return to the Dell he did finally make his debut for the club although his opportunities were limited and towards the end of the 1990/91 season he had a loan spell at Notts County but made just two substitute appearances as Neil Warnock took them into the top flight.

Meanwhile at Burnley, we'd missed out in the play offs losing to Torquay and in the summer of 1991 our Steve Davis opted to move on at the end of his contract and he signed for Barnsley. It was a blow to lose him and as the new 1991/92 season approached there had been no sign of a replacement coming in.

Then, just days before we kicked off the season at Rotherham we finally made our move and signed Steve Davis from Southampton for £60,000. Given that one replaced the other they have often been referred to as Steve Davis Mark I and Steve Davis Mark II. They can be separated formally with the first Steven P Davis and the second Stephen M Davis.

The second Davis quickly settled in to the side alongside skipper John Pender and for the next three years they were a cornerstone of a Burnley side that finally lifted the club out of the doldrums.

Signing Davis proved to be a masterstroke by Casper. He was a very accomplished defender but he had much more to his game. Maybe not the quickest, but he was strong in the air but was also very comfortable on the ball, a rarity for a defender in the lower divisions. He often threatened the opposition with runs out of defence and was also a good passer of the ball.

He also scored more than his fair share of goals for a defender. He netted six in his first season as the Clarets finally lifted themselves out of the fourth division but he beat that two seasons later as we won another promotion.

One goal he didn't get was at Wembley in the win over Stockport in the play off final. With the Clarets 2-1 up against the depleted, demoralised and unprofessional Stockport side Davis went on a run that almost ended with him scoring what would have been one of the best ever seen at the old national stadium.

It had been three fantastic years for Burnley and for Davis who won numerous supporter awards and was also in the PFA team in 1992.

The 1994/95 season proved to be something of a disaster for us. He was now partnered by Mark Winstanley at the back with Pender relegated to the reserve team. Davis was given the captaincy but things didn't work out at all that and just a year after the Wembley success we were relegated.

At this point Davis decided to move on at the end of his contract after four years with the Clarets. His choice of club was Luton which was something of a surprise but we received £750,000 for him which was a record sale for the club.

A year later he found himself relegated again and as so often happens Luton's first game of the following season was at home to Burnley. We met five times with Davis in the Luton side and in those played at the Turf he was treated like a returning hero and received the warmest of receptions each time.

In December 1998 we were struggling again at the bottom of the division and with Barry Kilby just a few days away from becoming chairman we splashed the cash and brought him back to Turf Moor. The £750,000 Luton paid for him was an outgoing transfer record for us and when we paid the same fee to bring him back that too was a record.

Some signings prove to be good ones, some not so good. Stan Ternent used to use the term 'no risk' for some of his signings and I'm certain this one fell into that category. When he made what was in effect his third debut against Walsall he was in the team alongside another new signing in Graham Branch. Poor Branch hardly got a look in as Turf Moor rose to the return of its prodigal son.

After scraping home that season Davis took the captaincy in the following season and led us to another promotion, his third with the club. Again he turned in some superb performances and that continued following the promotion. This time there was to be no relegation for him.

For a year and a half the Clarets were one of the better teams in the division and Davis was still very much in sparkling form. But a number of injuries restricted his appearances and at times he struggled. There were still some great moments such as his winner against Spurs in the League Cup.

But he was playing in a side that was too often conceding goals for fun and the 2002/03 season, which proved to be his last for us, was a difficult one for him. He was released at the end of the season and signed for Blackpool.

From Blackpool he moved to York before finally hanging up his boots, but even then his Burnley career wasn't over. Towards the end of 2005 he was brought back in a scouting capacity, assisting chief scout Cliff Roberts.

He wasn't in that role for long before replacing Mark Yates as first team coach in January 2006 working alongside manager Steve Cotterill and his assistant Dave Kevan. Part of his role was taking charge of the reserves but he was also very much part of the first team match day team in the technical area.

When Kevan left in October 2007, Cotterill decided to give Davis the job and bring in another coach rather than a new assistant. That promotion didn't last too long before Cotterill left and Davis was appointed caretaker manager.

He was in charge for just the one game. We won it at Leicester and he dedicated it to the departing boss. I think many Burnley fans would have loved to have seen him get the job on a permanent basis but we brought in Owen Coyle and when Sandy Stewart arrived Davis reverted to first team coach.

He continued in that role until Owen Coyle and Sandy Stewart walked out for Bolton in January 2010 with Burnley in the Premier League. Davis was again appointed caretaker manager. However, less than a week before a game against Manchester United at Old Trafford he himself walked out on the club along with the rest of the back room staff to bid his, surely, final farewell to Turf Moor.

Some Burnley players are popular, some are not, then there are players like Davis. The Burnley crowd simply loved him right from the start and that adulation didn't disappear until January 2010. I always thought that should there be a poll to determine a Burnley player of the 90s then Davis would win it hands down. One was held in 2011 which he didn't win, but I do believe the events of January 2010 was a reason for that.

Davis remained with Bolton as first team coach but left in October 2012 along with Owen Coyle and Sandy Stewart. They'd steered Bolton to relegation from the Premier League months earlier and the sack came after a disappointing start to the 2012/13 season back in the Championship.