WFFC Advent Calendar: 1 – Liam Baptiste

During December 2012, will be taking a unique look at our 25 players with the most appearances for the club (since 1995).

We begin with Liam Baptiste, who comes in with 79 starts in four different spells.

Laim made his debut in the early stages of the 2002-3 season, under Danny Honeyball, while still a teenager. His first match was the 3-2 F.A. Cup victory over Ipswich wanderers, and went on to play 40 games that season – beaten only by Ian Barnes with 42 starts.

Despite Honeyball being replaced by Hakan Hayrettin, Baptiste remained in the squad, and was key in saving the club from relegation.

Baptiste stayed with the club during the summer between the 2002-3 and 2003-4 seasons, and was an ever-present in the side at the start of the 2003-4 campaign.

However, Baptiste left the club after making only 14 starts that season, seemingly being swayed by an ‘agent’.

He returned a year later, but only made one substitute appearance – coming in the Southern League Cup in the 2-1 defeat to Wingate & Finchley. He did however find the back of the net on his only appearance that season.

Baptiste spent the 2005-6 season with Barking – amongst other clubs including Wealdstone, before returning to Forest to play under Danny Honeyball again during 2006-7.

He was installed as club captain, and was a ever-present in the team that ended up finishing seventh, only a few points off the play-off places.

He scored two goals in his final season for the club – one in the 2-1 defeat to Flackwell Heath, and one – almost from the half-way line – against Potters Bar Town: a goal which even got a mention on BBC Radio 5Live.

He left the club just before the end of the 2006-7 season, making his last appearance in the 3-0 victory over Enfield Town.

At the end of the 2006-7 season, he was one of a number of former Forest players to follow Victor Renner to Potters Bar Town, though it is not clear where Baptiste has been plying his trade between then and now, where he is currently with Frenford Senior, playing alongside former Stags Tom Prendergast (who was with the club at youth level) and Ryan Oliva.

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