Halford before a match for Portsmouth against Scunthorpe United in May 2011.
|Full name||Gregory Halford|
|Date of birth||8 December 1984|
|Place of birth||Chelmsford, England|
|Height||1.94 m (6 ft 4 1⁄2 in)|
|Playing position||Utility player|
|2003||→ Braintree Town (loan)||1||(0)|
|2008||→ Charlton Athletic (loan)||16||(2)|
|2008–2009||→ Sheffield United (loan)||41||(4)|
|2010–2011||→ Portsmouth (loan)||33||(5)|
|2014–||→ Brighton & Hove Albion (loan)||4||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 13:43, 21 December 2014 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).
Gregory "Greg" Halford (born 8 December 1984) is an English footballer who plays for Nottingham Forest. He is naturally a right-back or centre-back but can play in numerous positions including central midfield, right midfield and even as a striker. Born in Chelmsford, Halford began his career with Colchester United where he came through the youth system before moving to Reading in 2007. His stay at Reading was a short one and Halford transferred to Sunderland later the same year. After failing to hold down a regular place with Sunderland, he moved to Wolverhampton Wanderers in 2009 and later to Portsmouth in 2010 and Forest in 2012. Halford has also played for Braintree Town, Charlton Athletic and Sheffield United on loan at various points in his career, as well as representing England at England U20 level.
Halford started his football career in July 2001 when he joined Colchester United's youth team. He signed a professional contract on 1 August 2002, made his first team debut on in a 5–0 home defeat to Luton Town on 21 April 2003, and scored his first senior goal in a 2–1 defeat at home to Hartlepool United.
In over 150 games in five years for the first team at Layer Road, he gained the reputation of being a 'utility man' having played in defence, midfield and attack for club and country, his last manager, Geraint Williams, preferring to play him at right back. He also had a reputation for a long throw, with a high percentage of Colchester's goals in the 2005–06 season coming from Halford's long throw. He said "I tried measuring it one time – it was half the pitch, 50 yards."
After helping the U's to gain promotion to the Championship last term, Halford handed in a transfer request in August 2006 after interest from several Premier League clubs. Keen to prove himself at a higher level, the England U20 international stated his wish to play in the Premier League, but the transfer request was rejected despite Halford reporting that Colchester had received a "big offer" from Sheffield United. He was linked with a number of Premier League clubs, but on 30 January 2007, Reading completed the signing of Halford for an undisclosed fee, believed to be at least £2.25million, on a contract that would keep him at Reading until June 2010. His debut for Reading came as a substitute appearance in their 0–0 home draw with Portsmouth on 17 March 2007, where he played for the last few minutes on the left wing. He made his full debut in Reading's 1–0 defeat away to Tottenham Hotspur on 1 April 2007, where he conceded a penalty due to a controversial handball decision.
Halford signed a four-year deal with Sunderland after making only three appearances for Reading in his short spell there. He was confirmed as Sunderland's first signing of the summer transfer window on 11 June 2007, and cost the club £3.5 million. Roy Keane had previously tracked Halford and was extremely pleased to capture him, rating him very highly and expecting much from him in the 2007–08 season. Reading's Director of Football, Nick Hammond, revealed that Halford had not fitted in with the rest of the Reading squad, and had failed to make the impact both Reading and Halford had desired.
He made his debut for Sunderland on 15 August 2007 in a 2–2 draw with Birmingham City at St Andrews. However, on 11 January 2008, it was announced that Sunderland would listen to offers, following reported interest in him from Crystal Palace and Charlton Athletic. He moved on loan to Charlton at the end of January 2008, scoring twice against West Bromwich Albion and Wolverhampton Wanderers.
On 2 July 2008, Halford moved to Championship side Sheffield United on a season-long loan, and subsequently made his debut for them in the opening game of the season at Birmingham City. Halford scored his first goal for the club against Blackpool on 23 August. His goal in the semi-final play-off against Preston North End meant that Sheffield United earned a place in the 2008–09 playoff final.
Halford signed for newly promoted Premier League side Wolverhampton Wanderers on 3 July 2009 in a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee. He made his debut on 15 August 2009 against West Ham United, going on to make 17 Premier League appearances for Wolves, along with three in cup competitions. He mostly played on the right of midfield or at right back. As with earlier in his career, long throw-ins were a strong feature of his game.
Unable to stake a claim to regular football at Molineux he went out on loan at Championship side Portsmouth in October 2010 for two months. He made his debut for the Fratton Park club in a victory over Millwall and scored his first goal for the club on 23 October 2010 when he struck the winner in a 2–1 win at Hull City. On 17 November, the loan was extended for one month.
On 11 July 2011, Halford joined Portsmouth on a permanent basis for a fee believed to be in the region of £1m, signing a three-year deal.
On 27 July 2012 Halford joined Nottingham Forest for an undisclosed fee. He made his debut for Forest on 13 August 2012 in the League Cup against Fleetwood Town. He made his league debut five days later against Bristol City. His first Forest goal came in the 4–1 win over Barnsley. He was featured in the Football League's Championship Team of the Week that week.
Halford has been capped for England at U20 level, making his debut against Portugal in the Toulon Tournament on 4 June 2005, and scoring his first international goal in a 3–0 win against South Korea on 6 June 2005.
As of 5 November 2014
|Colchester United||2002–03||Division Two||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0|
|Charlton Athletic (loan)||2007–08||Championship||16||2||0||0||0||0||—||16||2|
|Sheffield United (loan)||2008–09||Championship||41||4||4||3||1||0||3||1||49||8|
|Wolverhampton Wanderers||2009–10||Premier League||15||0||1||0||0||0||—||16||0|
|Brighton & Hove Albion (loan)||2014–15||Championship||1||0||0||0||0||0||—||1||0|
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- http://www.wolves.co.uk/page/News/0,,10307~2388560,00.html[dead link]
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- "Portsmouth re-sign Wolverhampton Wanderers' Halford". BBC Sport. 13 January 2011.
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- "Halford Joins Forest". Portsmouth F.C. 27 July 2012. Retrieved 27 July 2012.
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- "'Striker' Halford is a hidden gem for league leaders Forest". Nottingham Post. 19 August 2013. Retrieved 19 August 2013.
- Baker, Ian (19 August 2013). "Nottingham Forest 3 – Bolton 0: Greg Halford is Billy Davies’s new front man". Daily Star. Retrieved 19 August 2013.
- "Portugal edge Toulon win". The Football Association. 4 June 2005. Retrieved 5 February 2007.[dead link]
- "England through to semis". The Football Association. 6 June 2005. Retrieved 5 February 2007.[dead link]
- "Greg Halford". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 15 May 2013.
- "Individual Awards". Coludaybyday.co.uk.