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Tommy Smith (footballer, born 1980)

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Tommy Smith (footballer, born 1980)

Tommy Smith
A head and shoulders of a man, wearing a black blazer, white shirt and blue tie.
Smith in 2006
Personal information
Full name Thomas William Smith
Date of birth (1980-05-22) 22 May 1980
Place of birth Hemel Hempstead, England
Height 1.79 m (5 ft 10 in) [1]
Playing position Right winger / Striker
Youth career
1995–1997 Watford
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1997–2003 Watford 149 (33)
2003–2004 Sunderland 35 (4)
2004–2006 Derby County 90 (20)
2006–2009 Watford 124 (27)
2009–2010 Portsmouth 19 (1)
2010–2012 Queens Park Rangers 50 (8)
2012–2014 Cardiff City 24 (1)
2014–2015 Brentford 28 (1)
National team
2000 England U21 1 (1)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 14:18, 4 May 2015 (UTC).

† Appearances (goals)

Thomas William "Tommy" Smith (born 22 May 1980) is an English professional footballer who most recently played for Brentford. He is normally used as a right winger or a striker.

Smith started his career at Watford, where his younger brother Jack was also a trainee. He played a part in Watford's consecutive promotions from the Second Division, reaching the Premier League in 1999. Although Watford were relegated in 2000, Smith represented his country at under-21 level the following season. He left Watford to join Sunderland on a free transfer in 2003, before moving to Derby County in 2004. He was voted Derby Player of the year in 2006, before re-joining Watford. After the club's relegation in his first season back at Vicarage Road, Smith's subsequent performances earned him consecutive Watford Player of the Season awards in 2007–08 and 2008–09. At the start of the following season he was sold to Premier League club Portsmouth. The club faced administration that season, and were eventually relegated. The following season, Smith joined Championship club Queens Park Rangers, becoming a regular in a team challenging for promotion to the Premier League. Smith joined Brentford in the summer of 2014, spending one season there where he helped them to the Championship play-offs.

Contents

  • Early and personal life 1
  • Club career 2
    • Watford 2.1
    • Sunderland 2.2
    • Derby County 2.3
    • Return to Watford 2.4
    • Portsmouth 2.5
    • Queens Park Rangers 2.6
    • Cardiff City 2.7
    • Brentford 2.8
  • Playing style 3
  • Career statistics 4
  • Honours 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7

Early and personal life

Smith was born in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire. His father Dave, a chartered surveyor and former Watford youth team player, helped coach with the academy during his son's time there.[2][3][4] His younger brother Jack, born in 1983, also came through the club's youth system to become a professional player. The pair did not play for Watford together competitively; Tommy was substituted in the 67th minute of the club's 4–0 win over Brighton & Hove Albion on 26 April 2003, while Jack would make his first-team debut as a 81st-minute substitute. Jack would not make another appearance that season, while Tommy left for Sunderland in the summer.

Smith attended Hemel Hempstead school between 1991 and 1997.[5] He has been with his wife Nina since leaving school. They married in 2005, live in Berkhamstead and have three children.[4][6] Outside of football, Smith's interests include golf and films.[6] In 2014 he and his brother Jack took over the sales arm of an estate agent and chartered surveyors with its headquarters in Bushey Heath, near Watford.[4]

Club career

Watford

As a boy Smith trained with Millwall, Sheffield United, who had a base in Amersham, and Watford, who he was with until the age of 12.[2] After only playing for Comets Sports club in Sunday league football for two years, he was given a chance by his father at Watford in a county trial at the age of 14 and signed with them again.[2] Manager Graham Taylor gave Smith his debut for Watford on 18 November 1997, bringing him on as a substitute in a 2–1 Second Division win over Oldham Athletic.[7] Smith did not play another league game in 1997–98, but made eight appearances for Watford as they qualified for the play-offs in the 1998–99 season, where the club gained promotion to the Premiership. He established himself in the team during the club's first Premier League season, making 23 appearances and scoring two goals, including one at Vicarage Road against Manchester United.[8]

Although Watford were relegated in 1999–2000, Smith remained at the club, playing under



External links

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  47. ^ Tommy Smith | Football Stats | No Club | Age 35 | 1997-2015 | Soccer Base
  48. ^ Striker Tommy Smith at Brentford on trial
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References

Cardiff City

Queens Park Rangers

Honours

  1. ^ The First Division was renamed as the Championship for the start of the 2004–05 season.
Club Season Division[nb 1] League FA Cup League Cup Playoffs Total Discipline
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals A yellow card A red card
Watford 1997–98 Second Division 1 0 1 0 0 0 2 0 0 0
1998–99 First Division 8 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 8 2 0 0
1999–2000 Premier League 22 2 0 0 1 0 23 2 1 0
2000–01 First Division 43 11 1 0 4 1 48 12 2 0
2001–02 First Division 40 11 1 0 4 0 45 11 1 0
2002–03 First Division 35 7 5 2 1 0 41 9 1 0
Watford Total 149 33 8 2 10 1 0 0 157 36 5 0
Sunderland 2003–04 First Division 35 4 4 4 0 0 2 0 41 8 1 0
Derby County 2004–05 Championship 42 11 3 0 0 0 2 0 47 11 2 0
2005–06 Championship 43 8 2 1 1 0 46 9 1 0
2006–07 Championship 5 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 6 1 0 0
Derby County Total 90 20 5 1 2 0 0 0 99 21 3 0
Watford 2006–07 Premier League 32 1 5 1 0 0 37 2 2 0
2007–08 Championship 44 7 2 0 0 0 2 0 48 7 3 0
2008–09 Championship 44 17 2 0 3 0 49 17 2 0
2009–10 Championship 4 2 0 0 1 0 5 2 0 0
Watford Total 124 27 9 1 4 0 2 0 139 29 7 0
Portsmouth 2009–10 Premier League 16 1 2 0 0 0 18 1 0 0
2010–11 Championship 3 0 0 0 1 0 4 0 0 0
Portsmouth Total 19 1 2 0 1 0 22 1 0 0
Queens Park Rangers 2010–11 Championship 33 6 0 0 0 0 33 6 0 0
2011–12 Premier League 17 2 3 0 0 0 20 2 0 0
Queens Park Rangers Total 50 8 3 0 0 0 53 8 0 0
Cardiff City 2012–13 Championship 24 1 0 0 0 0 24 1 3 0
2013–14 Premier League 0 0 1 0 2 0 3 0 0 0
Cardiff City Total 24 1 1 0 2 0 27 1 3 0
Brentford 2014–15 Championship 28 1 1 0 2 0 31 1 0 0
Brentford Total 28 1 1 0 2 0 31 1 0 0
Career totals 519 95 33 8 21 1 6 0 579 104 19 0
Key

Dash (—) indicates that club did not participate in competition. Statistics correct as of 6 April 2015.[7]

Career statistics

I’ve liked Tommy for a long time. He’s clever, infectious, enthusiastic and a hard worker. He can play as a centre-forward, behind the centre-forward or out wide, so covers a lot of positions. He’s going to be a great asset to us.[52]

As a young child Smith played as a central midfielder, before converting to a striker at age 12.[6] He is a quick player capable of kicking the ball with his weaker left foot,[50] and prefers being part of a team that plays passing football, than one that employs a more direct style.[51] Upon signing him for Portsmouth, then-manager Paul Hart said of Smith:

Playing style

On 7 August 2014, Smith signed a one-year deal with Brentford.[49] Smith scored an 86th minute equalizer on his Brentford debut against Charlton Athletic in a game that finished 1–1, on 9 August 2014.

Brentford

On 23 August 2012, Smith signed a two-year contract with Cardiff City for an estimated fee of £350,000. He was given the number 14 shirt,[43] and made his debut two days later on 25 August 2012, in a 2–4 away defeat against Bristol City.[44] On 23 October, Smith suffered a hamstring injury against Watford, which eventually meant that he missed the remainder of 2012.[45] His first goal for Cardiff City came on his first start after returning from his injury on 19 January, and was the winning goal in a 2–1 victory at Blackpool.[46] Smith received another Championship winner's medal as Cardiff won the division in April 2013, but was restricted to three cup appearances during Cardiff's first season in the Premier League. He was released after the Blues' relegation at the end of the 2013-14 season, having made 27 appearances and scored one goal during his two seasons with the club.[47] On 15 July 2014, it was revealed that Smith was training with Championship side Brentford.[48]

Cardiff City

On 31 August, Smith joined Queens Park Rangers on an initial three-month loan deal. His move was made permanent in January 2011, with Smith having agreed a three-year deal for a fee of around £1.5 million.[7][40] Smith provided the assist for Heiðar Helguson in a 2–1 win against Crystal Palace on 2 October and has since made many positive contributions to the QPR team but found starts hard to come by in the early days of his Rangers career. He scored his first goal for the club against Reading on 6 November,[41] and also netted a late equaliser in a 1–1 draw with former club Portsmouth three days later, scoring a last-minute penalty to earn QPR a point and keep their unbeaten start to the season intact.[42] On 20 August 2011, he scored his and QPR's first goal of the 2011–12 Premier League season, in a 1–0 away win against Everton.

Queens Park Rangers

Smith scored his first goal for Portsmouth against Hull City on 20 March 2010.[37] He suffered a broken nose following Daniel Sturridge elbowing him in the face in the following game, and subsequently missed the FA Cup semi-final. However, he recovered to play four further Premier League matches. Portsmouth were relegated in 20th position at the end of the season, having been deducted nine points for entering into administration. Despite uncertainty over whether the club would be able to continue as a business,[38] Smith remained at the club. He started their first match of the 2010–11 season on 7 August 2010, a match in which Portsmouth were only able to name four of their permitted seven substitutes.[39]

On 27 August 2009, it was confirmed that Smith had signed a four-year deal with Premier League club Portsmouth for an undisclosed fee believed to be in the region of £1.8m.[32][33] He later admitted that he was close to signing for Championship side Reading but chose Portsmouth instead.[2] On 30 August 2009, Smith made his Portsmouth debut in a 1–0 defeat to Manchester City at Fratton Park.[34] Portsmouth failed to pay their player's wages on time on three occasions in the 2009–10 season,[35] and Smith was among a number of Portsmouth players linked with a transfer during the January 2010 transfer window. However, due to his five games for Watford, he would have been ineligible to play for another club during the 2009–10 season.[36]

Portsmouth

One of his best seasons was the 2008–09 season, in which he scored seventeen league goals and made nine assists. As well as finishing as the club's top scorer, he was named Player of the Season for the second year running, as Watford finished 13th.[28] Smith made his 300th appearance for Watford in the penultimate game of the season, a 3–2 win away to Coventry City.[29] He started the 2009–10 season in similar form, and was involved in all of Watford's first seven league goals, scoring two and assisting the other five. This was despite ongoing transfer speculation linking Smith with Reading—managed by former Watford manager Brendan Rodgers—as well as other Premier League and Championship clubs,[30] and Watford manager Malky Mackay confirming that the club was considering an offer for him.[31]

Smith scored his first league goal of his second spell at Watford on 26 December 2006, against Arsenal at Vicarage Road. However, this wasn't enough to prevent a 2–1 defeat.[21] Watford reached the last four of the FA Cup in 2007, and in contrast to 2003, Smith was selected to start for Watford in the semi-final. However, for the second time in his career Smith was on the losing side, this time 4–1 to Manchester United.[22] At the end of the 2006–07 season Smith finished sixth in the voting for the club's Player of the Season awards, behind runaway winner Ben Foster.[23][24] However, Watford manager Aidy Boothroyd named Smith as his "outfield player of the season."[25] After relegation from the Premier League, Smith had a successful season in the Championship, with seven goals and nine assists earning him the 2008 Watford Player of the Season award. One of his goals was the equaliser in a 1–1 draw against Blackpool on the last day of the regular season, which secured Watford's place in the 2007–08 Championship play-offs.[26] Smith played in both legs of the semi finals, where they were defeated 6–1 on aggregate by Hull City.[27]

Return to Watford

Smith made his Derby debut in a league game against Leeds United. He scored his first goal for the club in a 2–0 victory over Queens Park Rangers.[16] Derby reached the Championship play-offs in Smith's first season at Pride Park. However, they were defeated 2–0 at Preston in the first leg of the semi finals. In the second leg, at Pride Park, Smith was substituted at half time. The game finished goalless, meaning that Preston progressed to the final.[17] Smith came second in the voting for Player of the year behind Inigo Idiakez, but did win the inaugural Derbyshire Fair Play award.[18] Derby's form deteriorated in 2005–06, with the club finishing 20th in the table, and eliminated early from both cup competitions. However, this time Smith became the club's Player of the year.[19] At the end of the season, Billy Davies was appointed Derby manager charged with the task of turning the club around and Smith believed that Davies "wanted to bring his own players in."[2] He was close to signing for Sheffield United, before he was the subject of an approach from former club Watford, who had just won promotion to the Premier League. On 30 August 2006, Smith rejoined Watford for a fee of £500k, signing a four-year contract.[20]

Derby County

Smith chose to leave Watford at the end of the 2002–03 season. However, as he was under the age of 24, he was unable to leave without a fee being paid, and so Watford had to employ him on a monthly contract.[2] He had a two-week trial with Premier League side Charlton Athletic, who did not offer him a contract for financial reasons. He then went on trial with West Ham United, but Glenn Roeder was sacked as manager, and his replacement Alan Pardew chose not to sign him permanently. Smith then spent a week on trial with Italian side Perugia which he "hated".[2] On his return to England he started a trial with Sunderland, subsequently signing a contract in September 2003.[2] Smith spent one season at Sunderland, helping them to finish third in the Championship, after which they lost 5–4 on penalties to Crystal Palace in the play-off semi-finals.[13] For the second consecutive season Smith scored the winning goal in an FA Cup quarter final,[12] and this time he was selected to play in the semi-final, which Sunderland lost 1–0 to Millwall.[14] Smith bought a house in the Sunderland area and anticipated discussing a two-year contract at the end of the 2003–04 season.[2] However, talks stalled and he chose to move to another Championship club, Derby County.[15]

Sunderland

[12] chosen instead. He later admitted that this had left him "devastated".Michael Chopra, with on-loan striker Southampton semi-final with FA Cup However he was dropped to the bench for Watford's 2003 [11][10] in the quarter final, having recovered from a car crash.Burnley was the only goal of the fifth round tie, and he also scored the winning goal against Sunderland run. His re-taken penalty against FA Cup for three consecutive seasons, but individually Smith progressed; in 2002–03 he finished as Watford's second highest goalscorer, with nine goals in all competitions. This included crucial goals in Watford's 2003 First Division Watford finished in the bottom half of the [9]

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