The identites of the two trailists who turned out for Rovers at Grimsby last night has been disclosed on the club’s official website today, with the club a little less secretive than they had been about Jos Van Nieuwstadt and fleeting cult hero Issoumaila Dao this time last year. The two, named on the squad list as simply Mustapha and Webster, are in fact Mustapha Dumbaya and Byron Webster.
Mustapha Dumbaya has recently been plying his trade for Grays Athletic in the Blue Square Conference. However, he has also pitched up for trials at Gillingham and most recently Hereford United for whom he featured earlier this month in a friendly with Kidderminster Harriers, losing 3-2 to a goal scored by Tomi Ameobi no less. Dumbaya does appear something of a journey-man having turned out for much of the South-East’s non-league sides, in addition to Grays he has also featured for Maidenhead, Wingate & Finchley and Potters Bar Town in the past couple of years. His positioning is equally vague with Rovers deploying him at, and describing him as a right full-back, whilst he impressed in midfield for Grays against West Ham a fortnight ago, and played up front for Hereford last week.
Byron Webster has enjoyed an odd career path of his own. Born in Leeds he was with the Elland Road club as a junior before joining York City. H e made his debut for the Minstermen at the age of seventeen playing against Burton Albion in the Conference at the end of December 2004, and struck his first goal just over a week later against Stevenage. With limited opportunities at York he was released at his own request in February 2007 and joined non-league Harrogate Town. From here he made the less obvious move to the Czech Republic in the summer of 2007 to join FK SIAD Most of the Czech Premier League. Despite a trial with Motherwell at the start of the year Webster remains in Most in Northern Czech Republic.
Speaking of the players on the Rovers official club website Richard O’Kelly said: “[Mustapha] has made an impression here tonight. He looks bright, he looks lively and he will be with us for a couple of days. Tonight’s performance hasn’t done any of his opportunities any harm.” As for Byron Webster O’Kelly offered much the same soundbites, although did show that he could do with a new atlas; “[Byron] is curretly contracted to a club in Czechoslovakia… we have taken an opportunity, because of injuries to have a look at him and – again – he hasn’t done anything to harm his chances.”