Where are They Now: Peter Butler

When I first got a season ticket in the early 1990s we had a terrier like midfielder called Peter Butler. He was (and presumably still is!) a northerner and a hard little bastard to boot. I think he even captained the team for a while. However, as far as I recall, when we got promoted to the Premiership he was sold. Anyone know what happened to him after he left us and what he’s up to now?


29 Responses to Where are They Now: Peter Butler

  1. Earlski says:

    I remember Butts. I was saying only a week or so back we needed a modern day equivalent.

  2. Anonymous says:

    According to http://www.exnottscountyplayers.co.uk/apageb.htm he moved on to Notts County, West Brom then Halifax and then went on to coach in Australia and Sorrento. According to http://www.ynw62.dial.pipex.com/wherewba.htm he is now an invester in property in Bali.

  3. Solsombra says:

    Peter did a fantastic job for us, especially in our promotion season. I was inspired by your post to write one myself. Hopefully it will fill in a few of the gaps about what happened to him.

  4. RMR says:

    I think Curbs sees Quashie as being the modern day Butler……..or at least providing the same energy/hardness to the midfield

  5. john says:

    i fort he left us because he said he hated playing for them and was descrased him self for playin for us…i hate him !.

  6. Neil Rawlins says:

    Peter Butler went on to play for Notts co, Grimsby, West Brom and Halifax Before managing Australian lower league club ‘SC Sorrento’…..He now manages a malaysian team called ‘sabah’…….now thats what you call a downward spiral!!!!!

  7. MA says:

    According to the West Brom “where are they now” site: Peter Butler resigned as Technical coach of Sabah in May 2004. Butts has a friend in Bali and he and family has been living there. He and his business partners intend to invest in tourist apartments in Bali

  8. Pat says:

    Right folks- Peter is living in Kuala lumpur, Malaysia although he travels to Indonesia for his coaching etc. He loves it out in the Far East and has joined the mALAYSIA MY SECONd HOME PROGRAMME. He would be happy to become a Malaysian citizen idc. Has a massive house out there. They do miss their family and friends in the UK. There was a page long article about him in the local paper when I was out there in March 06.

  9. casual says:

    hi whammers

    he coaches a team called persiba balikpapan


  10. tom childs says:

    I heard he left halifax under a cloud with the jim brown scandl, then went to australia, then to sabah wher he broke his contract and then had time in bali on the piss. Dont know what happened then, but now he is selling property in Bali.Isn’t everyone?

  11. louie Butler says:

    this comes from his son and shows that you lot dont have a clue, just to let you know hes doing well at Persiba and intends to acheive more as he is still a young coach,,,,we dont have a massive house in Kuala lumpur either,,,,,,,and good for you John,,,,sounds like your a real tough guy,,,saying you hate him on the internet where no one can get to you,,,,,,i tell you what if he ever met you hed knock your head off.

  12. Gemma Gapper says:

    Hi, i’m a recent mate of his. his children attend he same school as mine and his wife is a good mate. P.butler is an awesome father , fab husband and salt of the earth bloke. He has two awesome boys and a diamond daughter but the sting in the tail is anyone who has said negative things beware: He doesn’t suffer fools. he is shining in his placement in Indonesia and he recently leant me his car. So watch out be loyal and get off your high horse. Maybe let the world know about your awesome acheivements before you judge others. Finally if that ain’t enough his wife is a rock . Try meeting her and you’ll fall apart before you’ve begun. signed GG

  13. Chris Brennan says:

    As an ex next door neighbor of Butts and Michelle and the kids I want to say I agree with Gemma. Hence I’m trying to contact Peter as I have losted his email address. Louy, if you read this get Dad to give me a call. A Fantastic bloke and life in Oz isn’t the same without him.

  14. didut says:

    I’m Indonesian. Now, Peter Butler head coach of PERSIBA, a football club from Balikpapan, city of oil at Borneo (East Kalimantan). PERSIBA is member of Indonesia Premier League. He live at Balikpapan with his family.

    Read at this: http://www.okezone.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=49221&itemid=128.

  15. Radja says:

    He is the trainer of Indonesian Premier League club PERSIBA from Balikpapan (a city in East Borneo). He’s doing well with the club. Last year, he trained Malaysian club Sabah FA.

  16. ANDY SMITH says:

    Tracked you down at last Pete.Hope you and your family are ok.
    It seems such a long time ago when we were playing on grantham rd ground for Boothtown football club.I bet you miss them earley games we played with all the great lads such as dosher and jasper. Any way Pete i hope your carrer carries on going from strengh to strengh and this is to Louie them that knock your dad are only jealous.
    Well done pete.


  17. Trevor Finch (Shrimpers Club) says:

    Hello Pete – remember me, had many late night sessions at the Railway with Pat Scully. Remember being asked by Locke and Webb to invite Pat Scully to sign for Southend, just making Brentford for the deadline. Hoping you and Michelle are well – look forward to hearing from you. Trevor – no 10 has a ‘horses arse’ (bengie).

  18. Trevor Finch (Shrimpers Club) says:

    Pete – if you pick up my comment e mail is boss.abode@blueyonder.co.uk

  19. energiborneo says:

    I KNOW: Yes, he coaches a team called PERSIBA FC Balikpapan (East Borneo) ” The Sunbear Team”, INDONESIA.
    Look Butts at:
    http://www.pfc-persiba.com or http://www.tribunkaltim.com

  20. energiborneo says:

    Friday, January 4, 2008
    Peter Butler – From West Ham To South East Asia

    Ex-West Ham and West Brom player Peter Butler is still only 41 years old but he has already coached in five different countries.

    After leaving his post as reserve coach of Halifax in 2001, Butler moved to Australia where he worked with Sorrento Soccer Club in Perth. In 2003, the former tough-tackling midfielder took over Malaysian club Sabah before heading to Singapore and eight months as head coach of Singapore Armed Forces. He is now in charge of Indonesian outfit Persiba Balikpapan and he found time to chat.

    Your first coaching job was at Halifax?

    Yes, I started there. I was at West Brom and wanted to leave and start coaching. It was an opportunity for me to get all my licenses. I enjoyed it. I am from Halifax and I wanted to end my career there. I went there as coach but I ended up playing about 70 games. It was a great experience.

    When the manager there was sacked, Paul Bracewell came in and wanted to bring in his own people. That was fair enough. So I thought ‘what do I do now?’ I could have sat on my backside and wait for a nother job –there were offers to stay in England – but then the position in Australia came up.

    What was the Australian job?

    I was director of an academy at a state league side in Perth. I set up programs there for 11-18 year-olds and it was a great experience. There were some good young kids in the system there. The problem is that at 14-15, they fall out of the system, maybe go on to Aussie Rules Football or something completely different and they are then lost to the game.

    Can Australia become a major football power?

    I feel that Australia could become a real power in Asia without a doubt. They have the new league set up and they have to give it 5-10 years. Then they can look at leagues like Japan and Korea as models. They have to be patient. A lot of planning and thought has gone into it.

    There are some very good players and athletes in Australia but they are always competing against Aussie Rules, Rugby, cricket etc. There is some good stuff going on there at youth level and I have no doubt in the future that they will be a powerhouse.

    How was the standard in Australia compared to England’s lower leagues?

    It is a difficult question and not really fair to compare. The English lower leagues are very tough. It is all hustle-and-bustle, cut-and-thrust, they are unique in the world of football. Australia was a lot slower but different. The A-League is new but it has potential to be very big.

    Moving from England to Australia is perhaps not such a big move culturally but then going from Australia to South-east Asia must have been very different.

    It was a big culture shock but i was surprised at how easily I settled and got into it. It was a wonderful learning curve. If you want to test yourself then Asia is a great place to work. I went to East Malaysia and they are great people. They love football.

    It seems these days that Malaysian fans love English football and are less interested in their domestic game. Is that correct?

    When I was there they were developing the Super League and I took Sabah to the Super League. When I joined Sabah they used to get crowds of 2,000. From the day I went there, we got a lot of success and we got to the cup final and played in front of 80,000.

    It was my first season, took them to the Super League and the final and I did it with a team of kids. We went from having crowds of 2,000 to having crowds of 30,000.

    Since then, in the past two or three years, I can’t believe how much it has gone downhill. Sponsors have pulled out, there has been a lot of mismanagement, a lot of politicking, politicicians getting involved for their own reasons. Malaysians love football and their domestic football but in the last two or three years, a lot of people have become disillusioned with it.

    The Asian Cup was a disaster from a Malaysian point of view…

    I took my kids to a game during the Asian Cup but there was nobody there –it was so sad. They have wonderful stadiums, some great people doing some good work there. They need to develop the system slowly and be patient. The big issue in Asia is all about winning a trophy – it’s all win, win, win. They have to lose that mentality and start thinking about development, getting a coach education system in place.

    I can actually see Malaysian football coming back domestically in the future irrespective of the failures of the national team at respective international competitions recently in south east asia, but it will take a long time and a lot of hard work from top to bottom. I believe it is good that the government has decided to start taking a closer look at the state of Malaysian football and people should be made accountable for the failures at development level and national level. They need to place people in positions of responsibility with overseas experience who can help the local coaches and educate them with what is going on in the global game.

    Then you went to Singapore – a smaller country but with much more success in football.

    When I first went there, there were about 1,000 in the stadium again. They love English football in Singapore but they don’t watch their local football. I would say the majority of Chinese/ Singaporeans only go to the stadium not because they are interested in the quality of the football only because they have money on the game.

    The Singapore national team coach (Raddy Avramovic) has done a good job. A lot of people are critical that he has allowed four or five overseas players to naturalise and get citizenship. I have seen what the Singapore FA are doing and they are trying.

    There is some good stuff going on in Singapore but it is a non-competitive league. Three teams –Home United, Tampines and Singapore Armed Forces – who I was coach of- are in it. Apart from those three, it is by far the weakest league in south-east Asia.

    You are only 41 yet have coached in five countries. What kind of coach are you and how have you grown from your experience?

    When I started, I wanted to coach in as many countries as I could in order to get experience. From a cultural point of view, you have to embrace their culture and throw yourself into it. I think I am far from a typical English coach. I have a very open mind. You have to learn how to deal with difficult people and you must improvise. Improvisation is the key to working in this part of the world. You have to be flexible – if you are stubborn, you have no chance of success. I learned that the hard way and it has not only made me a better coach but it has also made me a better person.

    Can you give an example of a football cultural difference?

    Well, there are presidents calling you on the bench telling you to change the team (laughs). It is knowing how far you can push the players. Getting Malayisans in in the morning for strength and conditioning work and then getting them in the afternoon and doing ball work in the afternoon. You have to gain their trust and show them the reason why they are doing it.

    If you do that in Australia or England then it is no problem, they’ll do it, they want to get stronger and fitter. In Malaysia you have to cajole them and show they why they should do it. Indonesians are a little different, they want to work. If you get them up at seven in the morning and get they in the gym, they’ll be there.

    I have taken a lot of things from Indonesia and Malaysia and have adopted them into my personality. I learn things from then. You can’t rant and rave at the players. You lose a lot of face by shouting. I don’t, I talk to them and get them believing in what we are doing and trusting me. I am like a father figure to them.

    If you were to coach in England again, what kind of things would you take from Asia as a coach?

    I would take a great deal. Things such as being patient, putting things in place and developing slowly.

    Now you are in Indonesia. Some say that potentially, Indonesia is the strongest SE Asian nation. Would you agree with that?

    Without a doubt. Some of the players I work with are very talented and could move on to play in different leagues. I am not saying that they are ready for Europe as I don’t think they are. They have to become stronger mentally. People talk about their physique but I don’t think that is such a big handicap. There are some strong Indonesian boys. I think you can overcome that. They have a willingness to work and potentially I can see the potential in Indonesia is massive.

    Last week, we lost a league game in front of 45,000 people. I said to my assistant that ‘this is just like England.’ Indonesians are always singing, they never stop. That club is a big one, while mine is small but I thought they if you could bottle this atmosphere and take it back to the UK well…

    I got a taste of that during the Asian Cup in Jakarta. The atmosphere was fantastic.

    The clubs are like that too.

    So then why isn’t Indonesia better? What’s the problem?

    First, they have to get a coach education program. The Vision Asia project is a great idea through the AFC. They have to be willing to change and not be afraid of change. They have to be willing for some people to step aside to let things move forward. There are no real development programs. Most of these kids haven’t been coached. Indonesian coaches don’t really coach the youngsters, they just let them play. Sometimes that is great and kids can express themselves.

    In the UK, we got to a stage where kids are being overcoached. There are more programs than ever in the British system but we don’t produce any better players than we did 15 or 20 years ago with the old apprentice scheme.

    When Howard Wilkinson introduced the Charter for Quality, I could see there were going to be problems. We have created a monster. Kids now at 16,17 etc are earning 10,000 pounds a week. They are spoiled. We produce kids now without that hunger and passion. This charter for quality means that kids no longer do the menial jobs like cleaning the dressing room etc. Kids in the UK don’t appreciate what they have – fantastic training grounds, food etc

    What is your proudest achievement as a coach?

    If you’re talking about winning silverware then I haven’t really won any. I have always joined clubs who wanted to construct a new team. I have never joined a team with stars, they have always been mid-table or at the bottom and I have taken them up.

    At every club, I have always brought in young players. At Sabah, I brought in six young lads. I am a big believer in giving youth a chance. Taking Sabah into the Super League and the Malaysian Cup final was a big achievement as we were punching above our weight. We had no stars. At Singapore, I was there for eight months and we were top of the league. I resigned because of interference from the general manager there.

    Here, I have brought in a lot of young lads. You don’t always measure success by wining trophies but by building a team for the future.

    What are your future plans?

    I want to stay in Asia or go to the Middle-East. I like working in this region. I am ambitious and I would like to take on a new challenge – perhaps West Asia or Japan, Korea and China

    Copyright: John Duerden & Soccerphile.com

  21. energiborneo says:

    e-mai: petebutts4@hotmail.com
    phone: +62 81584542022

  22. Marcus McGee says:

    I am a good friend of Pete’s havin met him a few years ago in KL, Malaysia. I know that he was commited to West Ham and gave 100% every time he played because that was the type of plyer he was. I still keep in touch with him and know he holds WH close to his heart. For people who have never played the game and just watched it, it might be difficult to understand

  23. Grazza in Aus says:

    I played with Peter in Bali 6-a-side tournament on FA cup final weekend. He’s still coaching in Balikpapan, Indonesia. We had a great laugh, top bloke, brilliant stories about his playing days. I’m sure he wont mind me saying he was mince on the field tho…

  24. asfan says:

    Replacement of coach of Persiba Balikpapan Peter Butler in the middle of the have taking place [to] of competition of ISL 2008 new semi very regrettable [by] season [of] merged into [by] Persiba Fans Club ( PFC). According to , mistake not solely have to be charged upon Peter. There [is] many factors which according to Maulid become backward cause [of] Persiba in this time. ” There [is] three cause, that is field inexistence, stadium, and (it) is true player items we which do not as good as last year,” word of Maulid. Maulid tell, official member and management of Persiba don’t only seeing result, but also have to pay attention requirement of team. ” During the time Peter only choosing player of promoted [by] selection [is] team and management of rekruitmen, [is] not herself which searching from early. Isn’T it pity also if him get the quality of patch up player like in this time,” he said. What is griped [by] Peter with limitation of facility had [by] Persiba was also agreed [by] Maulid. According to him, Pemkot and Official member of Persiba have to immediately finish to renovate Stadium of Persiba which initially promised can wear [by] last August. ” Pemkot also have to follow to hold responsible provided practice location for Persiba, for example [in] field of Foni. Become if field can Foni have to is immediately corrected for the place of routine practice [of] Persiba,” continue him. Before dismissing, Maulid ask official member to and management evaluate performance of Peter former. If Peter dismissed in this time, I sure Persiba will difficult progressively. Because Persiba have to look for new coach, and sure [of] him need adaptation again. And I think new coach also difficulty will with condition of Persiba in this time,” he said. Better, continue Maulid, Peter have to remain to be defended till this season end.

  25. Dickie O says:

    ‘Ere Grazza, What do you mean by ‘he was mince on the field’? Is that an English expression or one you picked up in Oz? When I think of mince – metaphorically – I think of mincing, and of all the things you could accuse Peter of, mincing about isn’t one of them!
    We did great in the football that day, until you and half the team had beer at lunchtime… Was a great weekend though. See you there this year I hope.

  26. Paichel Geywie says:

    Lo ni he coaches Malaysian State called Kelate. GOMO KELATE GOMO

  27. Dickie O says:

    Yes, he’s coaching a Malaysian team called KELATAN, and they are equal top of the table!! It’s an amazing start to the season, they were only promoted to the top division when another team had to pull out. Check out:


  28. Sham says:

    Yeap….Peter Butler is doing a great job with Kelantan team in Malaysia….

    We Kelantan people love him so much because he transformed Kelantan football team.

    I’m very impressed with him because he can comunicate in our language too.

  29. Ian says:

    I had a drink with Pete Butler in a chinese cafe in Kota Bharu Malaysia last week. He is coaching the local team who are attracting crowds of 40 000 per match. I didn’t know who he was but he was in good form and even got the beers in.

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