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The history of the nib Newcastle Knights is kept alive by the many men who have pulled on the red and blue jersey since the Club’s inaugural year in 1988.

Knights TV has tracked down some of the best through the years to see where they are now and what their lives look like after footy.

Brad Godden may have made his NRL debut with the Knights in 1991, but it all started back in the Club's inaugural year of 1988 playing Jersey Flegg.

Born and bred in Newcastle, the former Australia representative recalls the awesome memories he had playing for the Club.

“It was a long time ago but I still love thinking about my time there,” Godden smiled.

“I had eight years with the Knights all up, a year at the Hunter Mariners... and a couple of years in England.

“I really enjoyed my time in England, but retired in 1999 and have been working hard ever since back in the real world.”

Unlike these days, most rugby league players back then both worked and played the game.

“In the first few years up until 1995 I was working as well as playing, mainly in the building game with a few of the other Knights boys, Robbie McCormack and Glenn Miller... we worked together in the construction industry,” said Godden.

“In 1995 when the Super League war hit, things changed for everyone and I became full time from then for the next three, four years.

“It was good to get a taste of the full-time career.”

Godden hung up the boots after his stint with Leeds Rhinos in England in 1999 and continued his work within the building industry.

“I worked in the building industry for the next few years, did a few home renovations, bought and sold a couple of little houses and then got into scaffolding with Robbie McCormack who had a business in Newcastle with another guy,” Godden explained.

“In 2013, I bought a section of that business off them, the residential, commercial section and went out on my own.

“It has been busy the last two or three years and I can’t see anything changing in the near future.”

The former fullback admits times have changed for players, but still believes it’s vital for young players to think ahead for when they finish up in the game.

“For a lot of the young guys, it would be good for them to do a trade or some sort of employment, just to keep their minds ticking over and give them a bit of a break away from footy,” explained Godden.

“It’s a difficult transition for a lot of guys coming from full-time footy back into the working environment."

It doesn’t matter that Godden has been absent from the game for a long time, he’s still kept in close contact with a lot of the Knights Old Boys.

“I still holiday every Christmas and Easter with Mark Sargent, Robbie McCormack and Steve Fulmer, and we’ve got a really good base of friends from way back that still get together and have a few beers here and there,” Godden said.

“That’s what footy is all about, making friends and life-long friends.”

And now with a new-look Knights outfit, Godden is excited for what’s ahead in 2018.

“The last three years haven’t been the best for us but the group of players they have got together now, the younger guys that have played the last few years and have got a lot more experience, it looks to be an exciting year ahead.

“Footy has changed since we played so a lot of the things they do, the training, it’s all changed and even the game itself is so much different to when we played.

“It’s still good to be around the game, go to the games and be involved on a small scale.”