Peter Butler Unleashed!

Almost exactly a year ago I posted a WHERE ARE THEY NOW on Peter Butler. Peter has just sent me an email, which I have his permission to post here in full. It is highly entertaining and illuminating.

This is Peter Butler, ex-hammers player. My son, who is an hammers fan, said he had been on the site where obviously people post comments regarding me where some P***k has been slagging me off. Faor enough – I have broad shoulders and don’t really care but I want to put the record straight.

I live in Kuala Lumpur out of choice. I have a good life and my kids go to an international school here.

I left West ham for one reason only – not because I hated it there, as some idiot said. I loved every minute I had at West Ham Utd, but my mother was terminally ill and she died suddenly and I wanted to move nearer home to be near my Dad who was also not well. People often ask me why I left suddenly so there are the facts. I played with some excellent players their like Alvin, Bish, Clive & Martin Allen, Dicksy, Keeny etc and felt honoured to have put that claret and blue shirt on my back every game. Billy was fantastic to me and so was Harry who was instrumental in me joining the club. They are two people I had so much respect for and still have. It was a wonderful 2.5 years but my knees were playing up and i left for family reasons – end of story. Sad but true.

I then had an ill-feted spell at Notts County – 4 managers in 1 season – moved then to West Brom where I had 2.5 good seasons – great supporters at the Hawthorns. It went well but then I got offered a coaching position at Halifax Town, my home town team. That got off to a rocky start as I had people working against me coz they perceived me a threat to their positions in the coaching set up. Sad, weak bastards. That’s the thing about the English coaching set up – it’s so territorial. People are always watching their backs and a new face comes in and they shit themselves.

I left Halifax 2 years later and was offered a 3 year appointment on a sporting visa in Australia and loved it. I joined a small club called Sorrento in the Northern Suburbs of Perth, West Australia, as director of youth development and really enjoyed it. I met some wonderful people and have some great friends there to this day.

People often ask why I left england when I had a promising career ahead of me coaching ? Well, I was not prepared to sit on my arse and wait for another job. I love coaching and who would not have taken up an offer to coach and also finish my playing career in OZ – a truly wonderful experience.

I left Oz because the whole programme, from the A league down, was going through a total restructure and the job I was doing had gone as far as possible without additional funding. I could have stayed and enjoyed the Perth sunshine but thats not for me. I am driven and ambitious and was not ready just to live in Perth in the comfort zone – not my style. Plus its too quiet for me there.

I was then offered the Technical Director position at the East Malaysian Fa in Kota Kinabalu – a fantastic place to live and we had a lot of success there. I loved it, but then when things change there they change quick and I resigned due to problems behind the scenes.

I then went to Bali where I lived for a year, set up a business with a mate from England (who lives in OZ), bought land, built a house – then he decided to rip me off for over 200k dollars. So that went tits up and i am still in an Indonesian court fighting to recoup my investment. What a bastard. Not a great experience, but it made me sit up and smell the roses.

I still have a house and land there but will not end up living there. I moved onto Singapore where I coached the top side in Singapore SAF (Armed Forces ) had 8 months there. I took them to the top of the league, brought some good young kids into the team, then started getting interference from the general manager. His name was Colonel KOK – says it all!!! I resigned and moved back to East Malaysia, where I did 3 months consultancy work for the FA there. Then I came to Indonesia.

I coach a team here in the new Indonesian Super League called Persiba Balikpapan. It’s a wealthy oil and gas town in East Kalimantan. Good people who love their football. They are crazy about football here and its been like a busmans holiday for 14 months. I have travelled the length and breadth of Indonesia and I speak Indonesian, as it is similar to Malaysian, so it helps.

We get crowds at our place between 15- 20,000 every week and it’s crazy and it’s cut throat. Indonesian football is the strongest in South East Asia. They get huge crowds here. We played in East Java recently and there was over 45,000 in the ground. They are similar to the English supporters and they never stop singing. It’s certainly made me a better coach and a stronger and better person for the experience. It’s certainly chalk and cheese to Leigh – on – Sea and the Bbarking Road but what an experience! I would not have changed it for anything. I am still only 41 so there’s plenty of time for me to come back and coach in England, but I enjoy coaching and living in Asia. The game of football is going through the roof here. It’s growing and developing so rapidly.

I will never forget my time at West Ham. The fans were brilliant to me and I loved playing there. They are without a shadow of doubt the best fans in London and it was a pleasure and a riviledge to have pulled on that shirt and to have played for such great people.

I hope this puts the record straight from the horse’s mouth. I will never be rich living out here nor do I want to be, but I will always have a smile on my face, come what may !!


What an absolutely top man.


28 Responses to Peter Butler Unleashed!

  1. Dave Howells says:

    Just wanted to say that I am 46 and have fond memories of Peter Butler he was a great servant of the club and having read his e-mail obviously has claret and blue running through him. I would love to see him coaching again in this country, my god this country needs coaches like him. Please pass on my regards if you can Iain, by the way love the website !!

  2. Westhammike says:

    Peter,, remember enjoying seeing you getting stuck in midfield. Good luck for the future.

  3. WHU Kim says:

    I hope you found writing that a cathartic experience Peter and wish you all the best in your future career and life.

  4. chris says:

    Top man ,least he cares.

  5. jimwhu says:

    if we had eleven peter buttlers in our team now we would be much higher than tenth place good luck for the future thanks for the memorys

  6. Bruno says:

    Amazing reply for an amazing dude.

  7. ironDave says:

    I to have good memories of Peter none better than when I had him at 33/1 to score the first goal (can’t remember who against),up the little fella popped with a blinding header and mad celebration from me. And had a very good night out courtesy of Ladbroke ……thanx Peter and good luck!!!

  8. Dave from Finland says:

    He was one of my favorites, top man. Need i say more?

  9. mac says:

    Peter, great post and the best of luck to you. People with drive and passion like you deserve to succeed.

  10. geoff says:

    Lovely to read, he always gave 100 % and was proud to wear the shirt. Peter, if you read this site, I wish you nothing but success in the future, wherever that may be.
    Oh for some players this day and age to show some attitude like Peters.

  11. Paul W says:


    Thanks for the update like the others I have good memories of you playing for West Ham it does seem that you have had a varied time since leaving. All the best both professionally and pesonally in the future.

  12. sean says:

    A good honest pro for west ham, i used to sponser his kit, my favorite player at the time. Good luck.

  13. Biffo the bear says:

    Top stuff from a top geezer. Thanks for sharing Butts.

  14. Plaistow54 says:

    As Frank Ifield sang…I remember yoo-oou. Somewhere in that time we played Man.U. on the last day & stopped them winning the title. Might have been 95. I’ll think about it while i dig through the wardrobe for my old BAC windows shirt. I’d forgotten about that. Good luck Peter.

  15. ironsmith says:

    Butts is quite right, the game here in south east asia is unbelievable and its great to have you with us!I really enjoyed reading your email!

  16. Upton Spark says:

    I remember once while the players were coming out to get warmed up,I shouted out to him and he turned round,smiled and when I said good luck Peter he came over and signed my programme.
    He was one of the politest players I’ve met and he alway’s gave 110% every time he played.
    Great to hear from him,thanks Ian.

  17. nr2iron says:

    Says a lot about his character that he wanted to let people know that he not only loved it at the boleyn but seems like he still has a soft spot for the irons and how many ex-players would be bothered to take the time to do this when living it up on the other side of the world,i always remember he had huge thighs and never stopped running,nice one Peter.

  18. HermitRoadHarry says:

    To understand what an important player Peter Butler was for us, you have to remember how truly terrible the 1991-92 side was – pretty much relegated by February, it felt like. Nobody knew much about him when he arrived, but he brought passion, energy and a calm head into the centre of midfield just when that’s exactly what we needed and played a HUGE role in us bouncing straight back up. Cheers, mate.

  19. boleyn local says:

    Remember him well,was like a little terrier never afraid to get stuck in.Good e-mail peter and good luck.

  20. […] was reading Iain Dale’s West Ham Blog this morning when I came across an email by former Hammers player Peter Butler. He had sent this message to Iain Dale with the permission to post it on the weblog in full. About […]

  21. HammerRon says:

    Thanks Peter!!!!

  22. mirko jelicic says:

    Having worked with Peter Butler as an assistant trainer in Malaysia and Singapore Ican honestly say that he is a genuine person and and transfers that honesty and integrity to his coaching. His attitude and application are infectious. When the powers which prevail stop messin g with mechanics of coaching , then people of peoples calibre can truly reach their potential and help others do so. Pete it has been a pleasure to work and socialize with you. I hope you achieve what you deserve.
    ” theres only one peter butler “

  23. Hammer says:

    Great post. Peter Butler, top bloke, many good memories. It’s good honest players like him that make it a joy to support WHU in the real dire times as you always have someone out on the park who is really giving their all. Good luck for the future PB.

  24. Super Johnny Hartson says:

    Peter Butler, Martin Allen, Kevin Keen, Mattie Holmes. How’s that for a midfield quartet. Happy Days. Good Luck in the future PB.

  25. hi.. I’m Zoel from, an Aremania (Arema Malang FC supporters club) blog. my football club, Arema, last year play in Asian Champions League. Peter Butler’s last year team, Persiba Balikpapan, is one of our rival in Indonesia Premier Division.. I’ve see Arema vs Persiba last season, and there’s a good display & efforts from Peter’s team. Now, Peter has been leaving Persiba and currently unemployed as coach/manager. Today, Arema also have no manager after Miroslav Janu leave in early January. I hope Peter Butler will in Malang City to manage Arema Malang next season, Arema is the most professional club in Indonesia. We’are in Superliga (Premier Division) and one of the title contenders.
    *sorry for my poor English* 😀

  26. Mike Woolf (Java Hammer) says:

    I live in Jakarta and would welcome Peter for a beer anytime. i saw him play once on a wintry day – 3rd FA Cup v Southend I recall. Worked his socks off.

  27. Yaz Okulu says:

    does anyone knows if there is any other information about this subject in other languages?

  28. Neil Buchan says:

    I just met Pete in Tashkent of all places. We only had a time for 1 beer 2gether, (which although i ordered he paid for!) because he hed 2 catch a flight.

    I can tell u now that not many people make an impression on me immediately but Pete did.

    A genuine down 2 earth guy who didn’t just want to talk about himself.

    If u read this Pete hope u cought ur flight ok, and i hope all works out the way u wish.

    My old dear always says “whats 4 u wont go by u”


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