Latics A to Z

Wigan Athletic Football League players – A to Z – (Alan Mahon to Steve Nugent)

ALAN MAHON – STEVE NUGENT

 

MAHON, Alan
DOB: 4th April 1978
Other clubs: Crumplin United, Tranmere Rovers. Sporting Lisbon, Blackburn Rovers, Cardiff City, Ipswich Town, Burnley, Blackpool
Honours: Republic of Ireland Under 21’s (18 caps),
Republic of Ireland (2 caps)
League Cup Final winner 2002 (Blackburn Rovers)

Alan was signed on a three and a half year deal on 6th February 2004 from Blackburn Rovers for a fee of £200,000, although the Blues agreed to pay Rovers £250,000 if they won promotion to the Premier League by the end of the season. He made his Latics League debut the following day against Ipswich Town at Portman Road. Ironically he had joined Ipswich on loan from Blackburn five months earlier and although the Tractor Boys wanted to keep him they couldn’t afford his wages. The game which was televised live to the nation by SKY resulted in a stunning 3-1 victory to Latics.

By the end of season 2004/05 he had made 33+7 League appearances and scored 8 League goals. He also goes down in Latics folklore as a member of the squad that took Latics into the Premiership for the first time in the club’s history. However, he made just 5+1 league appearances, scoring once in the Premiership before being loaned to Burnley on 23rd March 2006. The move was made permanent in the summer and the Clarets paid Latics £250,000 for his services.

After a loan spell at Blackpool, he was released by the Turf Moor outfit prior to their inaugral season in the Premier League. He is currently (May 2011) plying his trade with former club, Tranmere Rovers.

MAKIN, Chris
DOB: 8th May 1973
Other clubs: Oldham Athletic, Marseille, Sunderland, Ipswich Town, Leicester City, Derby County, Reading, Southampton, Radcliffe Borough
Honours: England Under 21’s (5 caps),
Football League Under 21’s Representative,
First Division Championship winner 1999 (Sunderland)

Chris was a loan signing from Oldham Athletic and he arrived at Springfield Park on 28th August 1992. He made his Latics League debut the following day against Swansea City in a home encounter which the Blues lost 2-3. He went on to make 14+1 League appearances during which he scored 2 League goals before returning to Boundary Park on 22nd November 1992. Chris has since been involved in transfers totalling £1.9 million, quite ironic really when you consider that Latics balked at the prospect of signing him after his loan spell. Chris is still playing the game having signed for Southampton on 22nd August 2006, he retired from the professional game on his doctors advice on 23rd April 2008 following a serious hip injury.

To date (May 2011) he is playing semi professionally for Radcliffe Borough.

MALONEY, Shaun
DOB: 24th January 1983
Other clubs: Celtic, Aston Villa, Celtic
Honours: Scotland (21 caps, 1 goal)
Scotland Under 21’s (20 caps, 6 goals)
Scottish Premier League winner 2001, 2002, 2004, 2006 (Celtic)
Scottish FA Cup winner 2001, 2004, 2005, 2011 (Celtic)
Scottish League Cup winner 2001, 2006, 2009 (Celtic)

Shaun was signed from Celtic for a fee of 850,000 pounds on 31st August 2011.  His first game for thre Blues was on 13th September 2011, a second round Carling Cup game against Crystal Place at Selhurst Park in which the Blues were victims of a giant killing when they were beaten 2-1.

His Premier League debut came four days later when he was a last minute substitiute for the injured Hugo Rodallega.  Latics were beaten 3-1 by Everton at Goodison Park.  As at the end of season 2011/12 he had made 8+5 Premier League apperaances for the Blues netting on three occasions, the most memorable goal of which was the winner against Manchester United at the DW Stadium on 11th April 2012!

On 15th August 2012 he made a return to the Scottish international team following his impressive displays for Latics.

MARRIOTT, Andy
DOB: 11th October 1970
Other clubs: Arsenal, Nottingham Forest, West Bromwich Albion, Blackburn Rovers, Colchester United, Wrexham, Sunderland, Barnsley, Birmingham City, Beira Mar, Coventry City, Colchester United, Torquay United, Bury, Boston United, Exeter City
Honours: England Under 21’s (1 cap),
Wales, (5 caps),
Full Members Cup winner 1992 (Nottingham Forest)
Welsh Cup winner 1995 (Wrexham)
First Division Championship winner 1999 (Sunderland)

Andy was signed from Sunderland as emergency cover for Roy Carroll and Derek Stillie during a goalkeeping crisis. He made his Latics debut on Tuesday 9th January 2000 in a 3-2 victory over Oldham Athletic in the first round of the Leyland Daf Vans Trophy. His only other appearance for the first team was at Walsall in the second round of the Leyland Daf Vans Trophy which Latics lost 1-2. He left Latics on 14th March 2001 and returned to Sunderland.

However, he was only back at the Stadium of Light for two days and then he then joined First Division Barnsley on loan until the end of the 2000/2001 season. He is still (May 2011) playing the game with Exeter City.

MARTINEZ, Roberto
DOB: 13th July 1973
Other clubs: CF Balaguer, Motherwell, Walsall, Swansea City, Chester City, Swansea City (manager)
Honours: Third Division Championship winner 1997 (Wigan Athletic), Football League Trophy winner 2006 (Swansea City)

Roberto, was born in Balaguer Lerida, Spain on 30th July 1970. He was spotted playing for his local side CF Balaguer and was snapped up on a free transfer along with Isidro Diaz and Jesus Seba by chairman Dave Whelan on 25th July 1995. The trio’s signing was a huge coup for Latics at the time and the three players collectively became known as the ‘Three Amigos’. He made his Latics League debut on the opening day of the 1995/96 season, 12th August 1995, against Gillingham at the Priestfield Stadium and was the Latics goals corer in a 1-2 defeat. Also making their Latics debuts that day were Dave Felgate, Chris Lightfoot, Isidro Diaz and Jesus Seba.

By the end of the season he had made 42 League appearances and had scored 8 League goals. At the end of the league campaign he was voted as the club’s Player of the Year, such was the impact he made at Springfield Park.

He was a vital member of the Third Division Championship winning team in season 1996/97 during which he made 38+5 League appearances and netted 4 League goals. He found himself out of favour throughout the followi

ng season but he still made 26+7 League appearances, scoring just once in the League.

The last season at Springfield Park (1998/99) was a very difficult one for Roberto because he hardly figured in Ray Mathias’ team at all. He made just 3+6 League appearances without scoring a League goal but by the end of the season he still expressed a desire to stay with the club that he had fallen in love with. His luck certainly didn’t change too much under John Benson’s managership during the first season at the JJB Stadium (1999/00).

However, he did make.14+11 League appearances and scored 3 League goals in what proved to be a very hard season as Latics lost the play-off Final at Wembley to Gillingham. He was the club’s second longest serving player behind Ian Kilford by the end of the campaign. Not a bad record considering what all the doubters had to said when he first arrived at Springfield Park.

In the meantime, he had learned to speak excellent English and became something of an ambassador for the club and he regularly gave up his time to help the club’s young fans who thought of him as an idol and there were not too many of those in the recent past. By the beginning of the next season (2000/01) he signed a contract with Sky TV and became a presenter on their Spanish football show. This came about after Sky bosses were impressed when he made a couple of guest appearances on the show during the previous season.

He was always a feature of new manager Bruce Rioch’s team during the 2000/01 season but he left the club on 21st May 2001 after finding himself not on Steve Bruce’s retained list. Six other players had also been released, Carl Bradshaw, Gareth Griffiths, Diego Padula, Stuart Balmer, Darren Sheridan and Peter Beagrie. When he left he was the club’s second longest serving player.

He left Christopher Park heartbroken as his love affair with the club and the town came to an end. In total Roberto played 148+38, League games for the Blues and scored 16 League goals before moving to Scottish Premier side Motherwell on 8th July 2001, signing a three-year contract. He did this so that he would never have to play against his beloved Latics.

He went on to spend a short time at Walsall in August 2002 before leaving ten months later, spending three successful seasons for Swansea City. He then signed for Chester City at the beginning of season 2006/07, but he returned to Swansea City as manager on 23rd February 2007.

After guiding the Swans to the Championship from League One, and keeping them there, the departure of Steve Bruce to Sunderland in May 2009 resulted in Roberto coming back to Latics as manager on 16th June 2009. His assistant was none other than Latics old boy Graeme Jones who was also delighted to be back at Wigan Athletic. By the end of the season (2009/10) Martinez had ensured that the club maintained its Premier League status by finishing in 16th place in the table.  He also ensured that Premier League survival was maintained on the final day of season 2010/11 when his team ran out 1-0 winners at Stoke City in a game that will live long in the memory.

MARTINEZ, Hugo Rodallega
DOB:25th July 1985
Other Clubs: Deportes Quindio, Deportes Cali, Monterrey, Atlas, Necaxa, Fulham
Honours: Colombia (43 caps, 8 goals)

Hugo was signed by Steve Bruce on 25th January 2009 on a three and a half year deal from Mexican outfit Necaxa for a fee of £4,500,000. He replaced the outgoing Emile Heskey who had moved to Aston Villa three days previously. His debut came on 28th January 2009 in a home game against Liverpool when he came onto the field of play as a substitute for Amr Zaki. The Blues drew 1-1 with his fellow debutant, Mido scoring the penalty that secured the point.

As at the end of season 2011/12 he had made 92+20 Premier League appearances, scoring 24 times.  His goal scoring record is the best ever in the Premier League beating the previous best of 20 which was secured by Henri Camara.

He had refused a new contract in the winter of 2011 which had six months to run.  This meant that he was free to leave in the summer on a free transfer.  This didn’t endear him too well with manager Roberto Martinez who then just used him as an impact sub for the remaining few months of his Wigan Athletic career.  He signed a three year deal for Fulham on 12th July 2012.

A bit of Hugo Rodallega trivia – did you know that Hugo played as an emergency goalkeeper during Copa America 2007?

McADAM, Steve
DOB: 2nd April 1960
Other clubs: Portadown, Burnley, Barnsley

Steve arrived at Springfield Park on a free transfer from Burnley early in November 1980. He made his Latics debut against Northampton Town at Springfield Park on 12th November 1980, a game which the Blues won 3-0. In total he made 26 League appearances for Latics during which he netted twice.  He was released at the end of season 1981/82 having failed to impress manager Larry Lloyd during Latics’ promotion winning season.
After leaving the game he later suffered from psychiatric problems and depression.  On 21st February 2004, having been refused hospital treatment due to a lack of psychiatric beds in Northern Ireland, he drove from his home in Bangor six miles to Donaghadee Harbour and drove his car into the water.

An eyewitness said his last act before accelerating along the pier to his death was to throw his driving licence out of the car – it was later used by police to identify him.

McARTHUR, James
DOB: 7th October 1987
Other clubs: Hamilton Academical
Honours: Scotland Under 21’s (6 caps, 1 goal)
Scotland (7 caps, 1 goal)

James was signed by Roberto Martinez from Hamilton Academical on a four year deal for a undisclosed fee, believed to be around £500,000, with potential add-ons for appearances etc, etc. The move reunited him with former Hamilton team-mate James McCarthy, who was transferred to Wigan at the beginning of the 2009–10 season.

He made his Premier League debut on 14th August 2010 on the opening day of the 2010/11 season against Blackpool at the DW Stadium. The game resulted in a 0-4 defeat. After settling in at the DW Stadium he won his first Scotland cap on 16th November 2010 against the Faroe Islands at Pittordrie.

He went on to form a great midfield partnership with James McCarthy and they were both inspirational in keeping Latics in the Premier League for an eight consecutive season.  At the end of  season 2011/12he had made 21+28 Premier League appearances, scoring three goals.  He had also added to his international appearances total.

McCARTHY, James
DOB, 12th November 1990
Other Clubs, Hamilton Academicals
Honours, Republic of Ireland Under 17

‘s (3 caps, 1 goal)
Republic of Ireland Under 18’s (2 caps, 2 goals)
Republic of Ireland Under 19’s (2 caps)
Republic of Ireland Under 21’s (2 caps)
Republic of Ireland (6 caps)
Scottish Forst Division championship winner 2008 (Hamilton Academical)

James was signed from Hamilton Academicals for a fee of £1,200,000 on 16th July 2009. The fee would rise to £3,000,000 dependent on McCarthy’s success in England. Touted as the Scottish ‘Wayne Rooney’ great things are expected of him. He made his Latics Premier League debut on 22nd August 2009 against Manchester United at the DW Stadium. He was a substitute for fellow debutant Mohamed Diame in a record 0-5 top flight defeat for the Blues and he was an almost permanent fixture in the team after that.

On 2nd March 2010 he made his first full international appearance when he was a used substitute during Ireland’s friendly loss against Brazil at the Emirates Stadium. As at the end of season 2011/12 his career total for the Blues was 76+1 Premier League games played during which he scored 4 goals.

McCULLOCH, Lee
DOB: 14th May 1978
Other clubs: Cumbernauld United, Motherwell, Rangers
Honours: Scotland Under 21’s (14 caps)
Scotland B (1 cap)
Scotland (18 caps, 1 goal),
Second Division Championship winner 2003 (Wigan Athletic),
Kirrin Cup winner 2006 (Scotland),
Scottish League Cup winner 2008, 2010 (Rangers)
Scottish FA Cup winner 2008, 2009 (Rangers)
Scottish Premier League championship winner 2009, 2010 (Rangers)

Lee’s signing for a club record £700,000 on 2nd March 2001 was made during a crisis at the JJB Stadium. He signed his four year deal, along with his Firs Park team mate Steve McMillan just days after Bruce Rioch was controversially sacked. He and Steve also had to be airlifted out of Scotland down to Wigan due to horrendous weather conditions in Scotland. He made his Latics debut the following day against Swindon Town in a home League game that resulted in a 0-0 draw. By the end of his first season at the club he had scored 3 League goals in 10 League outings. Lee had struggled to become the first choice striker at the JJB Stadium but at the turn of January 2002 he had a prolonged period in the first team set up.

By the end of season 2003/03, in which the Blues won the Second Division Championship with a record number of points, he had made 82 League appearances and scored 14 League goals. The following season saw Lee play pretty regularly despite club record signings of Geoff Horsfield and then Jason Roberts arriving at the JJB Stadium. By the end of the campaign his tally for the club was 98+25 League appearances with 20 League goals scored.

On 13th October 2004 he made his Scotland debut in a World Cup qualifying game against Moldova in Chisinau. The game resulted in a 1-1 draw. Lee was a commanding figure scoring goals from midfield during the 2004/05 campaign which resulted in Latics gaining Premiership status for the first time in the club’s history. By the end of the campaign his Latics playing career read, 150+25 League games played and 34 League goals scored.

It is interesting to note that Lee was one of EIGHT players who played in the promotion winning game against Reading and the Second Division Championship winning side who played against Barnsley in the final game at the JJB Stadium in 2003.

His first Premiership season consisted of 27+3 appearances, during which he scored 5 Premiership goals. He added to his Scottish caps and appeared in Latics first ever major Cup Final. Unfortunately the Blues were to lose 0-4 against Manchester United in the Carling Cup Final at the Millennium Stadium. Immediately prior to the season finishing he added to his international appearances tally when he starred for Scotland in the Japanese Kirin Cup competition, which Scotland won following a 5-1 victory over Bulgaria and a 0-0 draw with Japan.

He had played 192+32 league games for Latics during which he scored 44 goals, before informing new Latics boss Chris Hutchings that he was determined to leave the JJB Stadium for a dream move to Rangers on 21st May 2007. The Gers had tried to tempt him away the previous January but their bid of £750.000 was turned down as ‘derisory’ by then manager Paul Jewell. He finally moved to the UIbrox outfit on 11th July 2007 for a fee of £2.2000.000.

McEWAN, Stan
DOB: 8th June 1957
Other clubs: Blackpool, Exeter City, Hull City, Hartlepool United, Boston United

Stan arrived at Springfield Park from Hull City on Boxing Day 1987 along with former Liverpool legend Alan Kennedy. They made their Latics League debuts that day against Bury at Gigg Lane and Latics ran out 2-0 winners with Stan even getting on the score sheet. Unfortunately Stan only spent two seasons at Springfield Park, the second of which was blighted by injury. In total he played 26+3 League games for the Blues during which he netted 4 League goals. He finished his career at Hartlepool United where he spent a torrid time at the bottom of Division Four before retiring from the full time game before playing at non league level for Boston United.

McGARVEY, Scott
DOB: 22nd April 1963
Other clubs: Manchester United, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Portsmouth, Carlisle United, Grimsby Town, Bristol City, Oldham Athletic, Mazda FC (Japan), Aris FC (Cyprus), Derry City, Witton Albion, Barrow, Manchester Maccabi (manager)
Honours: Scotland Under 21’s (4 caps)

Scott was a loan signing from Oldham Athletic and made his Latics League debut on 30th September 1989 in a game against Brentford at Griffin Park which resulted in a 1-3 defeat. He was to play just 3 League games for the Blues during an injury hit month at Springfield Park.

He is currently (January 2012) the manager of Manchester Maccabi FC.


McGIBBON, Pat

DOB: 6th September 1973
Other clubs: Portadown, Manchester United, Swansea City, Scunthorpe United, Tranmere Rovers, Portadown, Glentoran, Lurgan Celtic, Monaghan United (asst manager), Newry City (manager)
Honours: Northern Ireland Under 21’s (1 cap),
Northern Ireland B (5 caps)
Northern Ireland, (7 caps),
Third Division Championship winner 1997 (Wigan Athletic)
Auto Windscreens Shield winner 1999 (Wigan Athletic)
Irish League Championship winner 2005 (Glentoran)

Pat arrived at Springfield Park on loan from Manchester United on 3rd March 1997 and made his League debut on 4th March 1997 against Hartlepool United at Springfield Park. The Blues ended up drawing the game 2-2. He stayed at Latics until the end of the season and it was Pat who scored the goal against Colchester United at Springfield Park in a 1-0 win on 8th April 1997 which ensured that the Blues would be promoted at the end of the League campaign. On 1st August 1997 he signed for Latics in a permanent deal worth £250,000 plus follow on fees depending on League games and International appearances.

After being a regular first team player for four years he surprisingly had a transfer request granted by the club in September 2001. On 15th February 2002 he signed for Scunthorpe United on a month’s loan with a view to a permanent deal. He made his Scunthorpe debut the following day. Whilst at Glanford Park he teamed up once again with Peter Beagrie and Carl Bradshaw, during his time at Glanford Park he played 6+0 League games for the club without scoring, and they never lost a game in which he played.

He returned to the JJB Stadium on 16th March 2002 after failing to agree personal terms with the club. By the end of season 2001/02 he had made 163+11 League appearances for Latics and scored 12 League goals. He was released at the end of the campaign and was signed on a short-term basis by ex Latics manager Ray Mathias for Tranmere Rovers at the start of the following season.

He now runs has a physiotherapist practice in Ireland and has returned to football management having been appointed manager of Newry City in February 2011.

A bit of Pat McGibbon trivia – did you know that Pat was the first ever Latics player to play in a World Cup qualifying game? He achieved this honour when Northern Ireland played Albania in Swutzerland on 10th September 1997.

McIVOR, Ron
DOB: 23rd March 1963
Other clubs: Peebles Rovers, Bonnyrigg Rose Juniors, East Fife

Ron was an accomplished amateur boxer, winning many amateur titles before deciding, at the age of sixteen, that he wanted to concentrate on football. He arrived at Springfield Park in early October 1979 and he made his Latics League debut on13th October 1979 against Doncaster Rovers at Belle Vue. Latics lost the game 1-3 but Ron did have the consolation of scoring Latics’ consolation goal. However, things didn’t work out for him at the club and he was released at the end of the 1979/80 League campaign.

A bit of Ron McIvor trivia – Ron goes down in history as the first ever Latics player to score on his Latics Football League debut.

McKEARNEY, Dave
DOB: 20th June 1968
Other clubs: Prescot Cables, Bolton Wanderers, Crewe Alexandra, Northwich Victoria, Chester City, Chorley, Morecambe, Burscough

Dave was signed by Kenny Swain from Crewe Alexandra for the start of the 1993/94 season. He made his Latics League debut on the opening day of the season, 14th August 1993. The game was against Scunthorpe United at Glanford Park and the Blues lost 0-2. By the middle of January he was injured and made 28 League appearances that season scoring 4 League goals. The following season was to be his last and he was released at the end of it before signing for Chorley. In total he made 45+4 League appearances for the Blues, scoring 9 League goals. Dave has also appeared for the Latics Grand Masters team.

McLAUGHLIN, Brian
DOB: 14th May 1974
Other clubs: Celtic, Airdrieonians, Dundee United, FC Niort, Ayr United, Queen of the South, St Johnstone, Stenhousemuir
Honours: Scotland Under 21’s (8 caps)
Scottish Premier League winner 1998 (Celtic)
Scottish Cup 1995 (Celtic)

Brian arrived at the JJB Stadium on 23rd June 1999. He played most of the pre season games but never made a full League debut for Latics that season. His only role during the campaign (Latics’ first at the JJB Stadium), was as a used substitute against York City in the first round, second leg of the League Cup and a full appearance against Carlisle United in the second round defeat in the Auto Windscreens Shield. With three months of the season left he was told that he could leave the club. He then moved to French side Niort for a short trial in April 2000. He still had two years left on his contract by the end of the campaign and a number of Scottish clubs were rumoured to be interested in taking him back north of the border.

However, a move never materialised and he made his League debut as a substitute for Neil Redfearn against Wrexham at the Racecourse Ground on Saturday 26th August 2000 in a match that resulted in a 3-1 win for the Latics. Just when things seemed to be improving for him at the JJB Stadium he was put on the transfer list along with Neil Redfearn, Alan McLoughlin and Andy Porter on 11th September 2000. In total he played 13+5 League games for the Blues without scoring. On Thursday 15th August 2001 he was transferred to Scottish First Division side Ayr United. He retired from the game in 2008.

McLOUGHLIN, Alan
DOB: 20th April 1967
Other clubs: Manchester United, Swindon Town, Torquay United, Southampton, Aston Villa, Portsmouth, Rochdale,
Forest Green Rovers, (player and asst manager)
Honours: Republic of Ireland B (3 caps), Republic of Ireland, 42 caps

Alan was signed on 9th December 1999 from Portsmouth. He made his debut against Brentford at the JJB Stadium on 18th December 1999 in a game that Latics won 1-0. He never really established himself as a first team regular, spending most of his time in the reserves, often helping out in a coaching capacity. He stayed at the club until 25th October 2001 when his contract was terminated by mutual agreement and he played his last game for Latics against Wrexham in a LDV Vans Trophy first round game against Wrexham at the Racecourse Ground, a game in which the Blues were humiliated 1-5.

He had been on the transfer list for eleven months when he left. He made just 12+10 League appearances and scored 1 League goal during his time at the club. After leaving the JJB Stadium he had a trial for Swindon Town and it seemed his playing career was over after failing to impress. However, on 23rd December 2001 he signed for Rochdale on a monthly contract.

McMAHON, Francis
DOB: –
Other clubs: –

Francis was a second year trainee when he made his only appearance for the club. He never managed to play in a League game before being released in April 2001 but he did manage to play a first team game in the Leyland Daf Vans Trophy. This was on 30th January 2001 in a second round game against Walsall at the Bescot Stadium, a game that was won 2-1 by the Saddlers. By the end of season 2001/2002 he was released.

 

McMAHON, John
DOB: 7th December 1949
Other clubs: Preston North End, Southend United, Chesterfield, Crewe Alexandra, Tranmere Rovers
Honours: Third Division Championship winner 1971 (Preston North End)

John McMahon was signed by Larry Lloyd from Crewe Alexandra for the start of season 1981/82 and he was instrumental in helping Latics achieve their first ever promotion by the end of the League campaign. He made his debut on29th August 1981, the opening day of the season, against Bradford City at Valley Parade, a game that resulted in a 3-3 draw. He was to stay at Springfield Park for two years before signing for Tranmere Rovers. In total he made 71 League appearances for Latics and scored 3 League goals.


McMANAMAN, Callum

DOB: 25th April 1991
Other clubs: Blackpool

Callum was a member of the youth team when he was given his Premier League debut against Portsmouth at the JJB Stadium on 24th May 2009. It was the last game of the season and resulted in a 1-0 win for the Blues. Callum came onto the field of play in the 78th minute as a replacement for Charles N’Zogbia.  By the end of season 2010/11 he had made 0+4 Premier League appearances without scoring.

The England Under 20’s international striker was loaned to Championship outfit Blackpool at the start of season 2011/2012 and he returned to the DW Stadium and extended his Latics Premier League appearances total to 0+6 without scoring.

A bit of Callum McManaman trivia – did you know that Callum is Liverpool Legend Steve McManaman’s cousin?

McMILLAN, Steve
DOB: 19th January 1976
Other clubs: Troon Juniors, Motherwell
Honours: Scotland Under 21’s (4 caps), Second Division Championship winner 2003 (Wigan Athletic)

Steve arrived at the JJB Stadium in the double deal that brought Lee McCulloch to the club. He was flown to Wigan in Dave Whelan’s private helicopter due to horrendous weather conditions in Scotland and signed for a fee of £550,000 on 2nd March 2001. He made his debut against Swindon Town in a home League encounter that resulted in a 0-0 draw. The game was also Colin Greenall’s first as caretaker manager following the controversial sacking of Bruce Rioch in the middle of Steve’s signing. He only made 6 League appearances before being struck down by a hamstring injury just as he was making a huge impact on the team. He was sorely missed in the play-offs when Latics went down 1-2 over two legs against Reading.

He was also hit by injury for the first part of the 2001/02 season but he eventually managed put all his worries behind him and became an integral part of the first team. However, his injury jinx kept striking during Latics’ first season in Division One and the previous Second Division Championship winning season and by the end of the 2003/04 League campaign he had made 76+6 League appearances without scoring.

Steve goes down in Latics folklore as a member of the squad that took Latics to the Premiership for the first time in their history. However, he didn’t play a game for the club due to injury until the final two months of the campaign. His Latics career consisted of 81+9 League appearances without scoring by the end of season 2004/05. It is interesting to note that Steve was one of EIGHT players who played in the promotion winning game against Reading and the Second Division Championship winning side who played against Barnsley in the final game at the JJB Stadium in 2003.

By the end of season 2005/06 (Latics’ first in the Premiership) he had made a further 0+2 League appearances without scoring. (81+11 in total). He never played for the club again as his injuries put an end to his professional career in February 2007.

McMULLEN, David
DOB: 13th June 1960
Other clubs: Cumbernauld United, Northwich Victoria

Dave, whose grandfather’s brother was the legendary Jimmy McMullan who was the captain of the Scotland team that hammered England 5-1 at Wembley in the infamous ‘Wembley Wizards’ game in 1928, joined Latics from Cumbernauld United on 18th March 1980 and made his Latics League debut the following day against Halifax Town at the Shay and the game ended in a -0 draw. He was to spend two seasons at Springfield Park before being released to join Northwich Victoria shortly before the end of the 1980/81 season. In total he made 20+7 League appearances for Latics scoring 3 League goals.

MELCHIOT, Mario
DOB: 4th November 1976
Other clubs: Ajax, Chelsea, Birmingham City, Rennes, Umm Salal
Honours: Holland (18 caps), Dutch Championship winner 1998 (Ajax), Dutch Cup winner 1998, 1999 (Ajax),
FA Cup winner 2000 (Chelsea)
Charity Shield winner 2000 (Chelsea)

Mario arrived at the JJB Stadium on 15th June 2007, signing a three-year contract, on a free transfer from Rennes. He was Chris Hutchings’ third summer signing. He turned down a few Premiership clubs and a host to top name European clubs, including Marseille, Paris St Germain, Lyon, Roma, Lazio and Olympiakos in order to sign for the Blues, expressing his delight that Latics proved the most persuasive of all of those clubs interested in him.

Manager, Chris Hutchings, decided
to make him the club captain following the departure of both Arjan De Zeeuw and Matt Jackson prior to his signing. His first game for the club was on 17th July 2007 whilst the club was on a pre season training camp and the opposition were Dutch Second Division outfit FC Zwolle. Latics ran out 2-0 winners. He made his Premiership debut on the opening day of the 2007/08 season, 11th August 2007, against Everton at Goodison Park, a game that Latics lost 2-1. He made 312 Premiership appearances during the season without scoring before a serious injury put an end to his season with just two games of it remaining.

The next game he played was for Holland in a European Championship group game against Romania on 17th June 2008. This ensured that he went down in history as the first Latics player to ever feature in the competition. He left the club on 4th June 2010 to join Qatar outfit Umm Salal and his Latics career reads, 96+1 Premier League games without scoring.

MELLOR, Neil
DOB: 4th November 1982
Other clubs: Liverpool, West Ham United, Preston North End, Sheffield Wednesday
Honours: European Champions League winner 2005 (Liverpool)

Neil arrived at the JJB Stadium on 19th January 2006 in a loan deal from Liverpool until the end of the season. The deal would be made permanent if he impressed following surgery on both his knees in the latter stages of his Liverpool career. He made his Latics League debut against Middlesbrough at the Riverside Stadium on 21st January 2006. The Blues won on their first ever visit to the stadium and Neil scored a dramatic winning goal with the last kick of the match! His fellow debutant, David Thompson also scored in a 3-2 victory for the Blues. He went on to make two more league appearances before returning to Liverpool injured on 27th March 2006.

Despite initial plans for a JJB Stadium return he went under the surgeons knife again in April 2006, bringing an end to his short stay at Latics. By the start of the next season (2006/07) he had signed a three-year deal with local Championship neighbours Preston North End and it was whilst at Deepdale that he had to retire from the game on 8th May 2012 aged just 29 through injury.

Some Neil Mellor trivia – did you know that Neil is the son of former Manchester City footballer Ian Mellor?

METHVEN, Colin
DOB: 10th December 1955
Other clubs: East Fife, Leven Juniors, Blackpool, Walsall, Carlisle United, Barrow, Rossendale United, Kirkham and Wesham
Honours: Freight Rover Trophy winner 1995 (Wigan Athletic)

Colin arrived at the club from East Fife in September 1979. The fee involved was a huge fee in those days, £30,000, but if ever that amount of money was well spent then it was on Colin. Ian McNeill had signed him purely on what he saw of the player in a pre season friendly between the two clubs almost two months earlier. He made his Latics League debut on 6th October 1979 in a home game against Torquay United which the Blues lost 0-3.

Colin has actually gone down in history as Latics’ best player of the 20th Century and in total he made 295+1 League appearances for Latics during which he scored 21 League goals. He left the club in the pre season of 1986/87 because of a lack of ambition at the club. Blackpool signed him and the fee set by a tribunal was just £6,000. His last known job in football (known to the author) was as first team coach at AFC Fylde.

Colin won the Player of the Year Award at the end of season 1980/81.   He also won it for a second time at the end of the 1965/86 league campaign.

MIDO, Ahmed
DOB: 23/02/1983
Other clubs: El Zamalek, KAA Gent, Ajax, Celta Vigo, Marseille, Roma, Tottenham Hotspur, Middlesbrough, EL Zamalek, West Ham United, Ajax, EL Zamalek
Honours: Egypt (51 caps, 19 goals)

Mido, whose full name is Ahmed Hossam Hussein Abdelhamid, signed on a six month loan deal from Middlesbrough on 23rd January 2009. The previous day Boro had taken Latics striker Marlon King to the Riverside in a similar deal. The arrival of Mido meant that Amr Zaki could now play alongside his Egypt international team mate. He made his debut against Liverpool at the JJB Stadium on 28th January 2009 in a game that resulted in a 1-1 draw, courtesy of a penalty from the man himself! After making 10+1 Premier League appearances and scoring twice he returned to Middlesbrough at the end of season 2008/09. Marlon King who had joined Middlesbrough on loan in a similar deal returned to the JJB Stadium.

He is currently (May 2011) playing his trade at his boyhood club El Zamalek, having not impressed during a trial for former club Middlesbrough in December 2010.

MILLER, David
DOB: 8th January 1964
Other clubs: Burnley, Crewe Alexandra, Tranmere Rovers, Preston North End, Colne Dynamoes, Carlisle United, Stockport County, Morecambe, Leigh RMI, Stalybridge Celtic (manager)

David was signed from Stockport County on 6th October 1994 by Graham Barrow. He made his Latics League debut two days later against Doncaster Rovers at Belle Vue in a game that resulted in a 3-5 defeat for the Blues. He was to stay at Springfield Park for two seasons before being released at the end of the 1995/96 League campaign. In total he made 34+3 League appearances for the Blues, scoring 3 League goals.


MILLETT, Michael

DOB: 22nd September 1977
Other clubs:

Michael was a rising young star having accomplished all that it was possible to do so at Schoolboy and Youth level. He made his Latics League debut as a substitute for Dave McKearney on 22nd April 1995 against Walsall at the Bescot Stadium in a game that Latics lost 0-2. He was to make 1+2 League appearances without scoring during the last three games of that 1994/95 League campaign. Michael had broken into the team and was set to hold down a regular place until fate ensured that he would never realise his dream of becoming a footballer. Just a day before his 18th birthday he was tragically killed in a car crash. RIP Mike.

MITCHELL, Jimmy
DOB: 13th Jun

e 1967
Other clubs: Southport, Horwich RMI

Jimmy joined Latics as a trainee in 1983, turning professional prior to season 1985/86.. He made his Latics League debut on 1st October 1985 against Walsall in a game at Springfield Park that resulted in a 2-0 victory. He was only to play one more league game against Plymouth Argyle at Home Park for the Blues before signing for Southport in 1986.

 


MITCHELL, Paul

DOB: 26th August 1981
Other clubs: Halifax Town, Swindon Town, MK Dons, Wrexham, Barnet
Honours: Second Division Championship winner 2003 (Wigan Athletic)

Paul signed a one-year contract on 31st June 2000 after he had impressed in the reserve team the previous season. He made his Latics League debut on 26th August 2000 when he came on as a substitute for Scott Green in the 64th minute of the game against Wrexham at the Racecourse Ground. His fairytale birthday debut turned into a nightmare just 8 minutes later when he was sent off. Thus becoming the player holding the record for the fastest ever sending off since the club re located to the JJB Stadium.

On Thursday 22nd March 2001, transfer deadline day, he was loaned to Third Division strugglers Halifax Town for a month. Whilst at the Shay he played 11 League games and also teamed up with his old team mate Neil Redfearn and ex Latics goalkeeper Lee Butler. During the following 2001/02 season he became a first team regular and he signed a new two-year contract on 11th April 2002 after impressing manager Paul Jewell with some outstanding displays in midfield. By the end of season 2003/04 he had made 30+33 League appearances without scoring.

On 2nd September 2004 he was allowed to join Swindon Town on loan as his first team place at Latics was no longer guaranteed. However, after playing 7 League games without scoring for the Robins, he was recalled to the JJB Stadium on 21st October 2004 due to injuries in a depleted midfield. Following the end of the midfield crisis he joined Milton Keynes Dons on a month’s loan on 9th December 2004. Ironically, this was the day after ex Latic Danny Wilson had been named as the new MK Dons manager.

After playing 13 games for the Dons without scoring he arrived back at the JJB Stadium injured on 25th February 2005 after he had been given the OK to play for the Dons for three months. Despite spending more or less all season either playing in the reserves or elsewhere Paul did make 1+1 League appearances to make his final total of 31+34 League appearances for the club before being released at the end of that memorable season which resulted in Latics’ promotion to the Premiership.

Not surprisingly he was released at the end of the campaign. However, he didn’t take long to get fixed up with another club as he signed permanently for the Milton Keynes Dons on 17th June 2005. On January 6th 2009 he retired from the game due to injury but he is currently (May 2011) involved with the MK Dons as the club’s Head of Recruitment and Scouring.  He also combines those duities with those of jointly coaching the reseve team.

MONTROSE, Lewis
DOB: 17th November 1988
Other clubs: Rochdale, Cheltenham Town, Chesterfield, Wycombe Wanderers

Lewis, who was on Manchester City’s and Bolton Wanderers’ books as a schoolboy, was in his second season as a scholar when he made his first ever start in a Latics game. The match was a pre season friendly encounter against Perspolis Tehran during a pre season training camp on 25th July 2006. His first taste of competitive action was on 20th September 2006 when Latics were beaten 2-0 by Crewe Alexandra at Gresty Road in a Carling Cup, second round encounter. He replaced Thomas Cywka in the 63rd minute of the game.

He won a one-year contract for the 2008/09 Premiership season and made his first competitive start for the club on 26th August 2008 in a Carling Cup, second round game against Notts County at the JJB Stadium, which Latics won 4-0.

On 24th September 2008 he commenced a two month spell at Whaddon Road making 4 league appearances without scoring before returning to the JJB Stadium. On 5th January he returned to Cheltenham for a further month before being loaned to Chesterfield for the remainder of season 2008/09.

On 24th June 2009 he was transferred to Wycombe Wanderers on a free transfer after failing to represent the Blues in a Premier League fixture.

MOORE, David
DOB:
Other clubs: Bury, Hyde United

David started his career at Latics as a trainee and although he played a pre season friendly against Leigh RMI at Hilton Park just before the start of season 2001/2002 it was felt that he was too young to feature in the first team. However, a chronic injury crisis meant that he made his Latics debut in a Worthington Cup first round game away at Blackpool on 22nd August 2001. His call up was so sudden that the club had to make a shirt with his name on it before the game. Manager Paul Jewell later confessed that he hadn’t even known his first name prior to his call up. David certainly didn’t let the team down although Latics lost the game 3-2. In fact he was one of three trainee’s to play in that game forcing Paul Jewell to comment that all three of them should have been in bed instead of in Blackpool at 9.30pm in the evening!

MOORE, Mickey
DOB: 20th July 1952
Other clubs: Blackburn Rovers, Preston North End, Chorley, Southport, Great Harwood, Dallas Tornadoes, Altrincham, Port Vale, Barrow, Lytham St Annes, Leyland Motors, Glossop North End, Chorley, Horwich RMI, Adlington Athletic
Honours: Fourth Division Championship winner 1973 (Southport)

Mickey was signed from Altrincham by Ian McNeill in the summer of 1977 prior to what was to become Latics’ last season as a Non League club. But, within weeks of the epic FA Cup third round game against Birmingham City at St Andrews he was sold to Port Vale for £4,000 after making 28+1 Northern Premier League appearances and scoring 11 Northern Premier League goals. He returned to Latics from Port Vale for

the start of Latics’ first season as a Football League club and made his Latics League debut in that historic first ever League game against Hereford United at Edgar Street. The match took place on 19th August 1978 and resulted on a 0-0 draw. In total he played 57+7 League games for the Blues scoring 12 League goals before being released at the end of the 1979/80 season.

MORENO, Marcelo
DOB: 16th June 1987
Other clubs: Vitoria, Cruzeiro, Shaktar Donetsk, Werder Bremen
Honours: Brazil Under 20’s (1 cap)
Bolivia (17 caps, 7 goals)
UEFA Cup winner 2009 (Shaktar Donetsk)

Marcelo was the second transfer deadlin day signing by Roberto Martinez on 1st February 2009. He was signed on loan for the remainder of the 2009/10 season from Shaktar Donetsk following quiclky behind Martinez’s signing of Victor Moses from Crystal Palace.

He made his Premier League debut for the club on 6th February 2010 when he came onto the field of play as a substitute for Paul Scharner for the last fifteen minutes of a game against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. The game resulted in a 1-1 draw and the Black Cats were then managed by former Latics manager, Steve Bruce. He left the club at the end of the season having played 9+3 Premier League games without scoring, returning to Shaktar Dometsk.

MORGAN, Steve
DOB: 19th September 1968
Other clubs: Blackpool, Plymouth Argyle, Coventry City, Bristol Rovers, Bury, Burnley, Shrewsbury Town, Hull City, Halifax Town, Altrincham, Total Network Solutions, Vauxhall Motors

Steve Morgan, a former England youth international, was snapped up on a free transfer from Coventry City in July 1996 and he made his Latics League debut on 17th August 1996 in an opening day of the season game against Northampton Town at Springfield Park. Also making their Latics League bows were Lee Butler and Charlie Bishop, the game itself resulted in a 2-1 victory for the Blues. Latics’ first ever opening day win at Springfield Park since entering the Football League. Steve played 31+5 League games for the Blues during his two seasons at Springfield Park, in which time he scored 2 League goals.

MORRIS, Andy
DOB: 18th March 1982
Other clubs: –

Andy started his career as a trainee with Latics. He was a regular in the Reserves but was seen as good enough by John Benson to go an a pre season tour of Scotland with the first team at the start of the 1999/00 season, the first at the JJB Stadium. He played in most of the games including a couple of pre season friendlies against Macclesfield Town and Chester City. During the League campaign he was on the first team substitutes bench on numerous occasions and despite not making a League debut he did appear twice in the Auto Windscreens Shield as a used substitute. He made a name for himself by scoring the golden goal (the first at the JJB Stadium) that ensured a first round victory over Burnley on 7th December 1999. He also played in the second round defeat at Brunton Park by Carlisle United. On 31st June 2000 he signed a one-year contract but he only made one appearance in the first team in the Leyland Daf Vans Trophy in a first round game against Oldham Athletic at Boundary Park and on 29th March 2001 he was told that he could leave the club.

Just five days later he went on trial to Second Division leaders Rotherham United and he played in several reserve games for the Millers without ever playing League football for the Blues.

MORTON, Neil
DOB: 21st December 1968
Other clubs: Crewe Alexandra, Northwich Victoria, Chester City, Altrincham, Barrow, Morecambe, Lancaster City

Neil was a Kenny Swain signing from Chester City on 1st August 1993. He made his Latics League debut against Scunthorpe United at Glanford Park on 14th August 1993, the opening day of the season. In fact, the game was ‘debut day’ for half of the team following Latics’ relegation the previous season. The result though had a familiar feel about it, in that Latics lost 2-0. He made 41+7 League appearances whilst at Springfield Park, during which time he scored 5 League goals.

The arrival of Graham Barrow, the manager who had let Neil go to Latics in the first place whilst the boss at Chester, as Latics manager in September 1994 brought an end to his Latics career when he off loaded him to Altrincham in October 1994. Funnily enough Neil did have the last laugh when he was part of the Altrincham team that knocked Latics out of the FA Cup two months later!

MOSES, Victor
DOB: 12th December 1990
Other clubs: Crystal Palace
Honours: England Under 16’s (2 caps)
England Under 17’s 15 caps, 9 goals)
England Under 19’s (12 caps, 2 goals)
England Under 21’s (1 cap)
Nigeria (3 caps)

Nigeria born Victor Moses, who moved to England aged 11 years old after the murder of his parents, was signed for a fee of £2.500.000 from Crystal Palace on 1st February 2010. His arrival coincided with his club going into administration and Palace were selling all their star assets and Moses was undoubtedly the best of the bunch, with Latics winning the race to sign him despite the interest of Premier League rivals West Ham United and Fulham.

He signed a three and a half year contract and made his debut as a late substitute for Hugo Rodallega against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. The game resulted in a 1-1 draw and the Black Cats were managed by former Latics manager Steve Bruce. As at the end of season 2009/10 he had made just 2+12 Premier League appearances, scoring once in what was a bitterly disappointing season for him.  By the end of season 2011/12 he had notched up 46+27 Premier League appearances during which he netted eight times.

MUSTOE, Jordan
DOB: 28th January 1991
Other clubs: Barnet

Jordan progressed to first team duty via the youth ranks. His first game for the club was a pre season friendly encounter against Crewe Alexandra at Gresty Road on 16th July 2009, a game which Latics won 1-0.

His first competitive game for the club came on Satirday 8th January in a FA Cup fourth round game against Hull City at the KC Stadium. He came on to the field of play as an 87th minute substitute for Maynor Figueroa in a 3-2 victory. His next outing was in the FA Cup the following season, when he played the full game in a 2-1 defeat against Swindon Town on 7th January 2012.

He is still to make his Premier League debut having played the second half of season 2011/2012 on loan at Barnet.

MUSTOE, Neil
DOB: 5th November 1976
Other clubs: Manchester United, Cambridge United, Cambridge City, Gloucester City, Stevenage Borough, Yeovil Town, Gloucester City (caretaker/manager)
Honours, Southern Football League play offs winner 2009 (Gloucester City)

Neil was signed from Manchester United, with whom he won Schoolboy Honours, in January 1998. He never played a League game for the club but he did play one game in the Auto Windscreens Shield. He was a substitute for Jorg Smeets in a second round game against Rotherham United at Springfield Park, which the Blues won 3-0. He left Springfield Park at the end of the season and was snapped up by Cambridge United in July 1998.

On 1st September 2001 he signed for Latics’ first ever FA Cup opponents at the JJB Stadium, Cambridge City in a loan deal.5th November 1976 Other clubs Manchester United, Cambridge United, Cambridge City Neil was signed from Manchester United in January 1998. He never played a League game for the club but he did play one game in the Auto Windscreens Shield. He was a substitute for Jorg Smeets in a second round game against Rotherham United at Springfield Park, which the Blues won 3-0. He left Springfield Park at the end of the season and was snapped up by Cambridge United in July 1998. On 1st September 2001 he signed for Latics’ first ever FA Cup opponents at the JJB Stadium, Cambridge City in a loan deal.

He is still (January 2012) plying his trade at Gloucester City, for whom he was once caretaker manager.

MUTCH, Andy
DOB: 28th December 1963
Other clubs: Southport, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Swindon Town, Stockport County, Barrow, Southport, Telford United (player asst.manager), Morecambe (asst manager), Vauxhall Motors (manager), Burscough (manager)
Honours: England Under 21’s (1 cap),
England B (3 caps),
Fourth Division Championship winner 1988 (Wolverhampton Wanderers)
Sherpa Van Trophy winner 1988 (Wolverhampton Wanderers)
Third Division Championship winner 1989 (Wolverhampton Wanderers)

Andy arrived at Springfield Park on loan from Swindon Town in August 1995. He made his Latics League debut on 26th August 1995 against Preston North End at Deepdale. The game resulted in a 1-1 draw and it was Andy who scored for the Blues. In total he made 7 League appearances for Latics and scored 1 League goal before returning to the County Ground on 24th September 1995.

He was last heard of (by the author) in 2008 when he was the manager of Burscough.

MIYAICHI, Ryo
DOB: 14th December 1992
Other clubs: Arsenal, Feyenoord, Bolton Wanderers
Honours: (Japan, 1 cap)

Ryo was signed from Arsenal on a season long loan deal on 13th August 2012.  His first competitive game came on 28th August 2012 when he was a used substitute in a 4-1 victory over Nottingham Forest at the City Ground in a Capitol One Cup, second round game.

He is still to make his Premier League debut for the Blues

N’ZOGBIA, Charles
DOB:28the May 1986
Other Clubs: Le Havre, Newcastle United, Aston Villa
Honours: France U 16’s (2 caps), France U 21’s (13 caps), France (1 cap)

Charles arrived at the club for a club record fee of £6,000,000 from Newcastle United on 2nd February 2009 with Ryan Taylor heading in the other direction for a nominal fee. He made his Latics Premier league debut on 7th February 2009 in a home game against Fulham which resulted in a 0-0 draw. As at the end of season 2009/10 he had made 48+1 Premier League appearances and netted six times.  He also picked up the Player of the Year award at the end of the campaign.

The following season saw Charles in inspirational form as the season drew to a climax nad it was courtesy of his run of goal scoring form that Latics secured enough pointsto secure their top flight status at the end of season 2010/11.

After a three month long spell of negotiations he was sold to Aston Villa for a fee of nine and a half million pounds on 29th July 2007. The fee was a compromise as Villa originally offered just nine million pounds whilst Latics wanted a million more.

His Latics career total was 80+3 Premier League appearances during which he scored 15 goals, the third highest top flight total behind Henri Camara and Hugo Rodallega.

NASH, Carlo
DOB: 13th September 1973
Other clubs: Clitheroe, Crystal Palace, Stockport County, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Manchester City, Middlesbrough, Preston North End, Stoke City, Everton, Stoke City

Carlo arrived at the JJB Stadium on 27th June 2007 when Chris Hutchings paid Preston North End £300.000 for his services. He had had a previous spell with the club as an emergency goalkeeping loan signing the previous February following injuries to Chris Kirkland and Mike Pollitt. However, he returned to Deepdale three months later having only appeared for the reserve team before this return to the JJB Stadium. His only first team action during season 2007/08 was for Championship outfit Stoke City, who he joined in a loan deal on 4th March 2008. He went on to see out the season in the Potteries making 10 league appearances and was a member of the team that won promotion to the Premiership!

His first taste of first team football for the Blues was on 18th July 2008 when he played the first half of a pre season training camp game against FC St Veit, a game Latics won 3-0. He made his first competitive start for the club on 26th August 2008 in a Carling Cup, second round game against Notts County at the JJB Stadium, which Latics won 4-0. This was to be his last appeara

nce for the club following a transfer deadline day move to Everton for an undisclosed fee on 1st September 2008. He is currently (May 2011) plying his trade at Stoke City

NEWELL, Mike
DOB: 27th January 1965
Other clubs: Liverpool, Crewe Alexandra, Luton Town, Leicester City, Everton, Blackburn Rovers, Birmingham City, West Ham United, Bradford City, Aberdeen, Doncaster Rovers, Blackpool, Doncaster Rovers (coach), Tranmere Rovers (reserve team manager), Hartlepool United (manager), Luton Town (manager), Grimsby Town (manager)
Honours: England Under 21’s (4 caps),
England B (2 caps),
Freight Rover Trophy winner 1985 (Wigan Athletic)
Second Division Play Off Final winner 1992 (Blackburn Rovers)
Premier League Championship winner 1995 (Blackburn Rovers)
Conference League Cup winner 2000 (Doncaster Rovers)
Third Division play-off winner 2001 (Blackpool)
First Division championship winner 2005 (Luton Town) (as manager)

Mike was signed from Crewe Alexandra on 31st October 1983 on a free transfer. He made his Latics League debut 31st December 1983 against Rotherham United at Springfield Park in a game that resulted in a 2-1 victory for the Blues. He was in and out of the team that season and he had made 5+4 League games by the end of season 1982/84 before really showing what he was capable of during the next one and a half seasons. He made 59+4 further League appearances during that time, scoring 25 League goals in the process before Latics sold him to Luton Town for £100,000 on 9th January 1986.

After leaving Luton he really made a name for himself by winning a Premier League winners medal with local neighbours Blackburn Rovers after first taking in spells at Leicester City and Everton. After leaving Ewood Park he became something of a football wanderer playing for a further six clubs which included Blackpool where he finished his playing career. On November 21st 2002 he became the manager of Third Division outfit Hartlepool United. He certainly had experience on his side having played in every English division including the Conference and the Scottish Premier League. Pool were justified in appointing him as manager when by the end of the season they had won promotion to the Second Division courtesy of finishing runners-up of Division Three, his reward was the sack on 30th May 2003!

Less than a month later he became the manager of one of his old clubs, Luton Town, after winning a fans’ vote poll by 4 votes ahead of Hammers’ former manager Joe Kinnear. Mike then went on to win the League One title for the Kenilworth Road outfit by the end of season 2004/05. However, he was sacked following a disastrous run of results that saw the Hatters next to bottom of the Championship on 16th Match 2007. He is currently (May 2011) out of the game after being sacked as manager of Grimsby Town on 20th October 2009.

A bit of Mike Newell trivia – did you know that Mike goes down in history as the scorer of the Premier League’s 1,000th goal?

NEWMAN, Rob
DOB: 27th January 1963
Other clubs: Bristol City, Norwich City, Motherwell, Southend United, Southend United (asst manager), Chelmsford City,
Gorleston, Cambridge United (manager), Bournemouth (asst manager)
Honours: Freight Rover Trophy winner 1986 (Bristol City)

Rob was signed on loan from Norwich City in March 1998 and he made his Latics League debut, along with Stuart Barlow, on 28th March 1998 against Preston North End in a 1-1 drawn game at Deepdale. He played just 8 League games without scoring and surprised everybody when he joined Southend United as opposed to Latics the following season. In November 2005, after a spell as manager of Southend United from whom he was sacked in March 2003, he had playing spells at Chelmsford United and Gorleston before he became the manager of Cambridge United following their relegation into the Conference, the club were in a dreadful financial plight and facing the prospect of liquidation and he was sacked on 6th September 2006.

His latest job in football was as an assistant manager of Bournemouth with Kevin Bond. He lost his job in September 2008 along with Bond and manager Eddie Howe.

NICHOLLS, Kevin
DOB: 2nd January 1979
Other clubs: Charlton Athletic, Brighton and Hove Albion, Luton Town, Leeds United, Preston North End, Luton Town, Rushden and Diamonds (coach)
Honours; (England Under 20’s (1 cap)
Johnstone’s Paint Trophy winner 2009 (Luton Town)

Kevin, a former England youth international, arrived at the JJB Stadium on 21st June 1999 in a deal worth £275,000 on a three year contract. Selling club Charlton Athletic insisted on a sell on clause depending on first team and International appearances. He was in fact the first player that Latics signed following their relocation to the JJB Stadium. However, Kevin missed most of the historic first season at the JJB Stadium (1999/00) through a nasty injury picked up whilst playing for England U 19’s and he never really fully recovered from it until the last few weeks of the campaign.

He made his Latics debut on 23rd October 1999 in a League game against Cardiff City at the JJB Stadium that resulted in a 2-0 win for the Blues. He only lasted for half of the game due to the recurrence of his knee injury and he only returned to first team action in April 2000. He made just 8 League appearances without scoring during the campaign.

The following 2000/01 season saw more or less the same pattern of injuries until the climax of the season when he put in some good performances. The season turned out to be his last at the club as he was sold to Luton Town for just £25,000 on Friday 3rd August 2001. The Hatters also agreed to pay Latics £25,000 for every 20 appearances that he made, up to a maximum of £150,000. In total he made 19+9 League appearances for Latics and scored 1 League goal. His stay at Kenilworth Road lasted until 26th July 2006, making 173+2 league appearances and scoring 30 league goals, before a £700,000 switch to Leeds United.

He is currently (May 2011) the first team coach at Rushden and Diamonds after a spell at Preston North End and finishing his playing career at Luton Town.

NICHOLLS, Lee
DOB: 5th October 1992
Other clubs: Hartlepool United, Shrewsbury Town. Sheffield Wednesday, Accrington Stanley, Northampton Town
Honours: England Under 19’s (1 cap)

Lee arrived at th

e DW Stadium in the summer of 2009.  He became a virtual ever present in the reserve team during his first season at the club and his performances ensured that he with the England U20s squad to the Under 20’s World Cup in Colombia but did not feature in any of the games.  He had previous international experience with the England Under 19’s for whom he played once, a 0-1 defeat against Germany in February 2011.

He has had loan spells at five different clubs but whilst at the first three his services were not needed for any first team encounters.  He played in a prestigious friendly against the Oman national side on 17th February 2012 at the Seed Stadium in Oman, with the regular Latics goalkeeper, Ali Al-Habsi playing for Oman!  The game resulted in a 1-0 win for Latics with Al-Habsi playing the second half for the Blues.

The closest he has come to a competitive first team appearance was when the Blues faced Hull City in the FA Cup Third Round on 2nd January 2010 and he is currently (August 2012) on loan at League Two outfit Northampton Town.

NIXON, Eric

DOB: 4th October 1962
Other clubs: Curzon Ashton, Manchester City, Wolverhampton Wanderers, Bradford City, Southampton, Carlisle United, Tranmere Rovers, Reading, Blackpool, Stockport County, Kidderminster Harriers, Crewe Alexandra (goalkeeping coach), Sheffield Wednesday
Honours: Third Division play offs winner 1991 (Tranmere Rovers)

Eric, the only goalkeeper to play in all four divisions of the League in one season, was signed by Ray Mathias on 15th September 1998 as cover for Roy Carroll but he was sent back to Edgeley Park without playing a game for Latics a week later. However, on 8th October 1998 he arrived at Springfield Park for a second time following the call up of Roy Carroll to the Northern Ireland Under 21’s team. He made his Latics League debut the following day when the Blues beat Oldham Athletic 3-2 at Boundary Park before leaving the club for a second time that season. However, on 26th March 1999 he was signed for the remainder of the League campaign and made a further 2 League appearances before becoming the Tranmere Rovers goalkeeping coach at the start of the following season.

I wonder if Eric holds the record of signing for one club the most times in a single season as well? On Wednesday 27th November 2002 he was named as the new goalkeeping coach of Crewe Alexandra. After a similar post at Sheffield Wednesday he left the game and currently (August 2012) runs a Health and Fitness studio, which is based in Prenton, with his wife.

NOLAN, Ian
DOB: 9th July 1970
Other clubs: Marine, Preston North End, Northwich Victoria, Tranmere Rovers, Sheffield Wednesday, Bradford City, Southport
Honours: Northern Ireland, (18 caps)

Ian, the proud holder of 18 International caps for Northern Ireland signed for Latics from on 9th August 2001 just two days before the start of the season. He had been released by manager Paul Jewell’s former team Bradford City three months earlier and he impressed enough on a pre season tour of Scotland to earn a one year contract. He made his Latics League debut on the opening day of the season, 11th August 2001 against Brentford at the JJB Stadium, a game that resulted in a 1-1 draw.

He made 5+3 League appearances for the club without scoring before being released at the end of the 2001/02 season. In April 2002 he became the fifth Latics player to win an International cap whilst playing for the club during Northern Ireland’s 5-0 defeat against Spain.

He retired from the game in 2003 after a failed trial at Halifax Town.

NUGENT, Steve
DOB: 7th May 1973
Other clubs: Barrow, Leigh RMI

Steve is the proud holder of the all time Latics record as the youngest player to ever play a competitive game for the club. This happened when he made his League debut as a substitute against Leyton Orient at Brisbane Road on 16th September 1989 in a match that resulted in a 0-1 defeat for the Blues. He also played as a substitute in Latics’ following match three days later against Liverpool, his boyhood heroes, at Anfield in a second round, first leg League Cup encounter. However, despite being at Springfield Park for almost four seasons he only played 2+4 games without scoring.

He was released at the end of the 1992/93 season.



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