Midfielder Dean Keates joined City on a short term contract in August 2002 after being released by his home town club Walsall. As Jan Molby’s new-look squad struggled at the start of the 2002/03 season so did Keates, though he scored his first City goal in an August 2002 1-1 draw against Leyton Orient and soon settled into the first team as a tough tackling presence with a good range of passing. When Molby was replaced by Peter Taylor in October 2002 Keates retained his first team place and signed a two year contract with the Tigers. On Boxing Day 2002 Dean had the distinction of scoring the first ever competitive goal at the newly opened KC Stadium and he added another goal two days later in a draw at York. After a month out of the first team in January Keates returned to the first team on the right side of midfield and ended the season with 37 appearances and four goals.
In 2003/04 Keates shared first team game time with new signing Jason Price on the right and Stuart Green in the centre of midfield. As the season wore on Keates’ appearances became more sporadic and dried up completely by Christmas. He stayed around for three more months before joining Kidderminster Harriers, reuniting with ex-City boss Jan Molby who had signed Dean for City 18 months earlier.
Keates came through the youth ranks at his home town club Walsall, making his debut in October 1996 as an 18 year old. Dean quickly became a first team regular and was an important presence when the Sadlers won promotion to the Championship in 1999. Immediately relegated in 2000, Walsall bounced back again in 2001 but in 2001/02 Keates had drifted out of the first team and was released in the 2002 close season.
Keates spent 2004/05 at Kidderminster but it was season that ended in the disappointment of relegation to the Conference. He joined Lincoln City in July 2005 but after only half a season he was lured back to his first club Walsall and his Lincoln contract was cancelled. The 2005/06 season ended in relegation for Walsall but Keates was appointed first team captain for 2006/07, a prelude to success as the Sadlers won the League Two title and Dean ended the season with 13 league goals. After failed contract negotiations with Walsall Keates joined Peterborough United in the 2007 close season, a move that delivered two successive promotions from the fourth tier to the Championship under manager Darren Ferguson. Afetr being a first team regular for those two seasons, Keates was used more sparingly in the Championship and was not selected at all when Ferguson left the Posh in November 2009. Dean joined Wycombe Wanderers in January 2010 on a six month deal, moving to Conference side Wrexham in May 2010 to bring an end to a Football League career that spanned 15 years and yielded precisely 500 senior appearances and 55 goals. Keates added a further five years and 180 appearances at Conference level for Wrexham, lifting the FA Trophy at Wembley in 2013 before his playing career drew to a close in 2016 at Rhyl and Rushall Olympic.
Dean joined the coaching staff at the Glandwr Wrexham Football Academy in 2015, where he took his coaching qualifications and completed a sports science degree. In October 2016 Keates was appointed first team manager at Wrexham and piloted the Welsh side to the upper reaches of the Conference before resigning in March 2018 to take over the reins at his boyhood club Walsall. Dean was sacked by Walsall one year and two weeks after his appointment in April 2019, and was reappointed Wrexham manager in October 2019 after another ex-Tiger Bryan Hughes was relieved of his duties.
Date/Place of Birth: 30 June 1978, Walsall
Hull City First Game: 26 August 2002, Hartlepool United A (League Division 3), 24 years, 57 days old
Hull City Final Game: 20 December 2003, Mansfield Town H (League Division 3), 25 years, 173 days old
Walsall (1995-2002), Hull City (2002-2004), Kidderminster Harriers (2004-2005), Lincoln City (2005-2006), Walsall (2006-2007), Peterborough United (2007-2009), Wycombe Wanderers (2010), Wrexham (2010-2015), Rhyl (2015-2016), Rushall Olympic (2016)
Hull City Record
Career: 54 apps, 4 goalsDean Keates
|2002/03||36 (0)||4||-||-||1 (0)||0||-||-||-||-|
|2003/04||9 (5)||0||-||-||0 (1)||0||-||-||2 (0)||0|