Darius Vassell

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Darius Vassell
Darius Vassell 2011.jpg
Vassell playing for Leicester City in 2011
Personal information
Full name Darius Martin Clarke Vassell[1]
Date of birth (1980-06-13) 13 June 1980 (age 34)[2]
Place of birth Sutton Coldfield, England
Height 1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)[3]
Playing position Striker / Winger
Youth career
Romulus
1996–1998 Aston Villa
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1998–2005 Aston Villa 162 (35)
2005–2009 Manchester City 103 (17)
2009–2010 Ankaragücü 22 (4)
2010–2012 Leicester City 44 (6)
National team
1998–1999 England U18 5 (0)
1999–2001 England U21 11 (1)
2002–2004 England 22 (6)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 18:20, 3 May 2012 (UTC).

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 19:51, 25 June 2013 (UTC)

Darius Martin Clarke Vassell (born 13 June 1980) is an English footballer who plays as a striker. He previously played for Aston Villa, Manchester City, Ankaragücü and Leicester City.

Vassell began his career at his home town club Aston Villa in the Premier League, being developed by their academy and making his first team debut in 1998. He was sold for £2m in 2005 to another Premier League club, Manchester City, staying for four seasons before being released in 2009, moving abroad to Turkey for a season to play for the Süper Lig team Ankaragücü. In October 2010 he was brought back to England by his former England manager Sven-Göran Eriksson to play for the Championship side Leicester City.

Under Eriksson with England, Vassell scored six goals from 22 international caps awarded between 2002 and 2004, including appearances at the 2002 FIFA World Cup in Korea/Japan, and UEFA Euro 2004 in Portugal.

Club career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Vassell was raised in the Gravelly Hill area of Birmingham and went to the Yenton Primary School in Erdington and John Willmott School, in Falcon Lodge, Sutton Coldfield. He first played football with local junior team Romulus in the Birmingham Boys League scoring a record of 46 in a season and 6 in 1 match.[citation needed] Following this he signed for the Aston Villa youth team.[4]

Aston Villa[edit]

An Aston Villa fan, Vassell was taken on by the club's School of Excellence. While playing for the club's youth team Vassell set a club record by scoring 39 goals in a single season.[5] He made his first team debut as a substitute in a 3–1 win against Middlesbrough in August 1998.

Vassell's best qualities were his speed and agility.[6] Aston Villa fans lamented the fact that his best performances seem to come with England, where he has proved particularly useful as a "super sub", coming on for the last 15 to 20 minutes of a game to trouble a tired defence with his exceptional pace.[6] One oddity of his career was that he had never finished on the losing side in a league game in which he had scored.[7] This run ended on 22 April 2011 when he scored for Leicester City during the 3-2 defeat to Nottingham Forest.

Manchester City[edit]

Vassell playing for Manchester City

Vassell was transferred to Manchester City in July 2005 for £2m.[8] During his first season for Manchester City, Vassell scored eight league goals in 35 appearances, forming an effective partnership with Andrew Cole. Additionally, he helped the Blues to an FA Cup Quarter Final, scoring two goals in his five cup games. He played part of the season with a hernia problem, which required surgery in the close season.[9]

In the 2007–08 season, he was assigned the number 12, as team-mate Elano took the number 11 shirt. He generally struggled to find his best form. In the latter half of the season, many of his appearances were as a wide midfielder, as manager Sven-Göran Eriksson adopted a defensive 4–5–1 formation. Vassell was linked with a move away from Eastlands, with Turkish runners-up Besiktas having a £1m bid rejected and linked to other clubs, including Premier League rivals Bolton Wanderers and newly promoted Derby County. Vassell scored his 50th Premier League goal on 10 February 2008, in the victory against local rivals Manchester United. On 20 April, Vassell scored the opening goal in City's 3–1 win over Portsmouth. Vassell only played 15 games in 2008–09[10] and was released at the end of the season as his contract expired.[11]

Ankaragücü[edit]

In July 2009 Vassell signed for the Turkish side Ankaragücü.[12] Around 3,000 fans turned out and celebrated his arrival.[13] He scored his first goal in the Turkish Süper Lig against Manisaspor in the second week of the season. He parted company with the club at the end of the 2009–10 season.[14]

Leicester City[edit]

On 20 October 2010, Vassell signed for English side Leicester City on a two-year deal until the end of 2011–12 season,[15] reuniting him with former Manchester City and England manager Sven-Göran Eriksson. He scored his first goal for Leicester in a 5-1 win over Doncaster Rovers on 11 December 2010. He scored his second goal against Hull City in a 1-0 away victory. His first goals in the 2011-12 season were against Southampton and Derby, winning both times. On 29 October he suffered a serious knee injury in a game against West Ham United which ruled him out for the rest of the season. The injury was a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament.[16] Vassell left the club on 30 June after not being offered a new contract.

International career[edit]

Vassell made his England debut on 13 February 2002, in a man of the match performance against Netherlands in a 1–1 draw. Fellow debutants in this game were Michael Ricketts and Wayne Bridge. He scored in the game with a 60th minute bicycle kick to equalise. He was subsequently included in England's 2002 World Cup campaign. He played in three games, starting just one: against Sweden in England's opening group game. The positive contribution of Vassell's England career has been somewhat overshadowed by his penalty shoot-out miss in the quarter-finals of Euro 2004 against hosts Portugal. Coming on for the injured Wayne Rooney early on in the game, Vassell missed England's last spot-kick in the penalty shoot-out, allowing Portugal goalkeeper Ricardo to knock England out of the tournament by scoring the final penalty. He has not appeared for England since.

Personal life[edit]

Vassell was born to Jamaican parents and is a practising Christian, he credits his faith for his survival of a serious car accident.[4] Vassell's nephew Isaac is also a professional footballer and currently plays for Plymouth Argyle in League Two.

Career statistics[edit]

As of 24 June 2013
Club performance League Cup League Cup Continental Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
England League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total
1997–98 Aston Villa Premier League 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
1998–99 6 0 1 0 1 0 3 2 11 2
1999–2000 11 0 1 0 5 0 0 0 17 0
2000–01 23 4 3 1 1 0 3 0 30 5
2001–02 36 12 1 0 1 0 6 2 44 14
2002–03 33 8 1 0 3 3 1 0 38 11
2003–04 32 9 1 0 6 1 0 0 39 10
2004–05 21 2 0 0 1 1 0 0 22 3
2005–06 Manchester City Premier League 36 8 4 1 1 1 0 0 41 10
2006–07 32 3 4 2 0 0 0 0 36 5
2007–08 27 6 3 0 2 0 0 0 32 6
2008–09 8 0 1 0 0 0 6 1 15 1
2009–10 Ankaragücü Süper Lig 22 4 3 0 0 0 0 0 25 4
2010–11 Leicester City Championship 31 4 1 0 0 0 0 0 32 4
2011–12 13 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 13 2
Total England 309 62 23 4 21 6 19 5 371 77
Career total 331 66 26 4 21 6 19 5 396 81

International goals[edit]

Scores and results list England's goal tally first.
Goal Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 13 February 2002 Amsterdam, Netherlands  Netherlands 1–1 1–1 Friendly match
2 17 April 2002 Liverpool, England  Paraguay 3–0 4–0 Friendly match
3 26 May 2002 Kobe, Japan  Cameroon 1–1 2–2 Friendly match
4 2 April 2003 Sunderland, England  Turkey 1–0 2–0 Euro 2004 Qualifier
5 5 June 2004 Manchester, England  Iceland 4–1 6–1 Friendly match (2004 FA Summer Tournament)
6 5 June 2004 Manchester, England  Iceland 6–1 6–1 Friendly match (2004 FA Summer Tournament)

Honours[edit]

Aston Villa[edit]

England[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Manchester City Team Visits Fairtex Sports Club Pattaya For A Spot Of Thai Boxing". Pattaya Daily News. 20 May 2008. Retrieved 15 November 2013. 
  2. ^ Hugman, Barry J. (2005). The PFA Premier & Football League Players' Records 1946–2005. Queen Anne Press. p. 627. ISBN 1-85291-665-6. 
  3. ^ "Manchester City Official Profile". 
  4. ^ a b "Baby delight for heartbroken Darius". Birmingham Evening Mail. Retrieved 29 April 2007. 
  5. ^ "Darius Vassell". 4thegame. Retrieved 29 April 2007. 
  6. ^ a b "TAYLOR TIPS VASSELL FOR `SUPER SUB' ROLE". 4thegame.com. Retrieved 9 May 2007. 
  7. ^ "Man City – Aston Villa Yahoo! Sport matchcast – Editorial Facts". Yahoo! UK & Ireland. Retrieved 9 May 2007. 
  8. ^ "Man City complete Vassell signing". BBC. 27 July 2005. Retrieved 29 April 2007. 
  9. ^ "Vassell op a success". Manchester Evening News. Retrieved 29 April 2007. 
  10. ^ Darius Vassell career stats at Soccerbase
  11. ^ "Man City allow quartet to leave". BBC Sport. 1 July 2009. Retrieved 1 July 2009. 
  12. ^ "Vassell Ankara'da" (in Turkish). ankaragucu.org.tr. 30 June 2009. Retrieved 2 July 2009. 
  13. ^ Wilson, Steve (2 July 2009). "Darius Vassell receives hero’s welcome at Turkish side Ankaragucu". Telegraph (London). Retrieved 2 July 2009. [dead link]
  14. ^ Walker, Andy (31 May 2010). "Ex-Aston Villa star Darius Vassell quits his Turkish club". Birmingham Mail. Retrieved 27 August 2010. 
  15. ^ "Vassell signs for City". www.LCFC.co.uk. Leicester City F.C. 2010-10-20. Retrieved 20 October 2010. 
  16. ^ "Leicester City's Darius Vassell sidelined for six months". news.bbc.co.uk. BBC. 2011-11-08. Retrieved 8 November 2011. 

External links[edit]