Port Vale have confirmed that experienced former Premier League midfielder Dean Whitehead is the latest addition to their coaching team.
An official club statement said:
Port Vale Football Club is delighted to confirm that Dean Whitehead has joined Darrell Clarke’s backroom staff as First-Team coach.
Whitehead amassed more than 600 appearances in his professional career – half of them playing in the Premier League.
He began his career at his local side Abingdon Town before being offered an apprenticeship with Oxford United. Whitehead turned professional with the U’s in 1999 and made his first senior appearance in a 2-0 victory against Luton Town.
A further 135 appearances across four seasons would be spent in Oxfordshire before a move up north to Sunderland. Whitehead spent five seasons with the Black Cats which saw him promoted twice to the Premier League and being given the captain’s armband.
In 2009, the midfielder moved to the Potteries where he would become a mainstay in Stoke City’s Premier League side which included appearances in the FA Cup Final and Europa League.
A two-season stay in Middlesbrough would follow his time at Stoke City before a move to Huddersfield Town.
Whilst at Huddersfield, Whitehead completed his UEFA A Coaching License and joined David Wagner’s technical staff. He was then appointed manager of Town’s Under-17 side.
In 2019, Whitehead joined League One side Shrewsbury Town as first team coach and was promoted to Assistant Manager in August 2020. Dean left his position at Shrewsbury in November 2020.
Commenting on the appointment, Port Vale Manager Darrell Clarke said: “I’m delighted that Dean has joined my staff as First Team coach. He has had a fantastic playing career and is definitely someone our squad can look up to.
“He has also had great experience coaching with his roles at Huddersfield and most recently Shrewsbury Town and I’m looking forward to him joining us.”