Brayford playing for Cardiff City in 2013
|Full name||John Robert Brayford|
|Date of birth||29 December 1987|
|Place of birth||Stoke-on-Trent, England|
|Height||5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
|2014||→ Sheffield United (loan)||15||(1)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 23:10, 19 August 2014 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).
John Robert Brayford (born 29 December 1987) is an English footballer who plays as a defender for Cardiff City. Born in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, he began his career at non-league Burton Albion before moves to Crewe Alexandra and Derby County preceded his time at Cardiff. He has also spent time on loan at Sheffield United and has made seven appearances for the England C team.
Brayford started his career at non-league Burton Albion, where he made almost 80 league appearance, before signing for League One side Crewe Alexandra on a three-year contract for an undisclosed fee on 1 September 2008. Burton later revealed that the fee was an initial up-front payment of £80,000, which would be raised to £130,000 if he were to progress into the first team. He made his debut for the club in a 3–0 defeat to Scunthorpe United on 11 October. Although Brayford's first season with Crewe ended in relegation for the club, it was a successful season on a personal level, as he won the Fans' Player of the Season, and attracted the interest of several bigger clubs.
In the summer of 2009, Crewe confirmed Brayford's former manager Nigel Clough was interested in taking Brayford to Derby County, and that they were prepared to sell him to a club that matched Crewe's valuation of the player. No deal materialised however and Brayford remained with Crewe for the full 2009–10 season, missing just one game and being named captain. Starting the season at right back, he finished it at centre half and earned a place in the PFA Football League Two Team of the Season as well as retaining the club's Player of the Season award.
With this form, Derby's long standing interest seemed to have reached its conclusion with reports that the Crewe had agreed a deal for £400,000 plus add-ons, though this was denied by Crewe boss Dario Gradi. Brayford was again linked with Derby as part of a joint £1m move to the Rams with team-mate James Bailey, with Crewe confirming that an offer for the pair, of around £1m, rising to £1.3m with add-ons and a percentage sell on clause, had been accepted.
Brayford formally completed his move to Derby County on 19 May 2010 for an undisclosed fee, signing a three-year deal. With the sale of Paul Connolly to Leeds United, Brayford found himself as the only naturally right sided defender at the club and was placed straight into the first team during the club's 2010–11 pre season fixtures. Brayford kept his place when the 2010–11 Championship season began, and played every minute of all Derby's 48 league and cup matches during the season. Although primarily employed as a right back, consistent injuries to other members of the Derby defence saw Brayford employed at centre-back and left-back through the course of the campaign. Earning plaudits for his ability to combine an attacking role with his defensive duties, Brayford scored once (in a 4–1 home victory over Watford) and assisted three times, and was considered one of the star performers as Derby initially challenged for promotion (being 4th in the table in November 2010) before a run of 4 wins in 24 games saw them plummet down to 19th in the table by the end of April. He was named the Derby County Supporters' Club Player of the Year at a Gala Dinner on 19 April 2011, before picking up The Jack Stamps Trophy before the final home game of the season against Bristol City on 30 April, having won the voting by a "considerable margin."
In August 2011, Brayford signed a new contract extending his stay at the club until the summer of 2014. He appeared in Derby's first ten games of the season, as Derby had their best start to a season for over 106 years, picking up 19 points from the first 10 games to sit third in the table. However, an injury in training, prior to the match against league leaders Southampton, ended a run of 59 consecutive appearances and caused him to miss his first minutes of Derby action since joining 15 months previously. In his absence, Derby recorded just five points from six games to fall out of the play off places. Brayford returned in a 2–0 defeat against Hull City on 19 November 2011, however he picked up a thigh injury in the following game. keeping him out of action for a further three weeks. Having returned to the side, a recurrence of his thigh injury in February ruled brayford out for a further six weeks. Brayford returned to the first team squad in April 2012, but was unable to reclaim a regular spot in Derby's starting eleven.
Brayford started the 2012–13 season as the regular starter at right back once more and scored his first goal in over two years in a 4–1 win at home to Blackpool. In November, Brayford was linked with a move to Premier League side West Ham United amid rumours that Derby needed to raise funds in the summer, although Rams manager Nigel Clough denied the rumours. During the January transfer window, Brayford was linked with a move to Championship leaders Cardiff City, however after the transfer window closed Brayford dismissed these rumours and stated his intention to stay at Derby. Brayford's ever present role in Derby's starting eleven during the season was apparently ended in early March when he sustained a torn hamstring. Brayford did return for the final five games of the season, but having only a year left on his contract, manager Nigel Clough expected Brayford to move to a Premier League club during the summer of 2013. The first confirmed interest in Brayford came at the end of June 2013, when a £1m bid from Wigan Athletic was rejected by Derby. However a month later, a £1.5 million bid from Premier League newcomers Cardiff City was accepted.
On 26 July 2013 John Brayford signed a four-year contract with Cardiff City, becoming City's second signing of the summer. Brayford was unable to make the break into Cardiff's first team however, playing only two League Cup matches during the first half of the 2013–14 season. His failure to even make the substitutes bench in any other match led to speculation that he would be allowed to return to former club Derby County by manager Malky Mackay. Following Mackay's dismissal, Brayford continued to be overlooked by his replacements and did not even make the Cardiff bench for their league games.
On 24 January 2014 Brayford joined Sheffield United on loan until the end of the season to be reunited with Nigel Clough for the third time in his career, and made his debut two days later in a 1–1 FA Cup draw with Fulham. Sporting a beard during his time with the Blades, Brayford became a cult figure with the fans, as the team rose from the bottom of the table to finish seventh and reach the FA Cup semi-final. Brayford finished his loan having played 20 times, scoring twice.
- As of 19 August 2014.
|Club||Season||Division||League||FA Cup||League Cup||FL Trophy||FA Trophy||Conf. Cup||Play-Offs||Total|
|Burton Albion Total||77||7||4||0||0||0||0||0||8||1||2||0||2||0||93||8|
|Crewe Alexandra||2008–09||League One||36||2||4||0||0||0||0||0||–||–||–||–||–||–||40||2|
|Crewe Alexandra Total||81||2||5||0||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||88||2|
|Derby County Total||109||2||5||1||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||117||3|
|Cardiff City||2013–14||Premier League||0||0||0||0||2||0||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||2||0|
|Cardiff City Total||3||0||0||0||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||5||0|
|Sheffield United (loan)||2013–14||League One||15||1||5||1||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||–||20||2|
- 2008–09 Crewe Alexandra Fans' Player of the Year
- 2009–10 Crewe Alexandra Fans' Player of the Year
- 2009–10 PFA Football League Two Team of the Season
- 2010–11 The Jack Stamps Trophy (Derby County Fan's Player of the Year)
- "List of Players under Written Contract Registered Between 01/09/2011 and 30/09/2011" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-02-08.
- Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2009). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2009–10. Mainstream Publishing. ISBN 978-1-84596-474-0.
- "Crewe snap up Burton's Brayford". BBC Sport. 1 September 2008. Retrieved 1 November 2008.
- "Burton release Brayford details". BBC Sport. 3 September 2008. Retrieved 1 November 2008.
- "Scunthorpe 3–0 Crewe". BBC Sport. 11 October 2008. Retrieved 1 November 2008.
- "Brayford wins Player of the Year". The Crewe Chronicle. 6 May 2009. Retrieved 9 June 2009.
- "Brayford flattered by Derby link". BBC Sport. 1 May 2009. Retrieved 21 May 2009.
- "Crewe confirm Brayford interest". BBC Sport. 11 May 2009. Retrieved 21 May 2009.
- "Crewe Alex: Brayford set for Derby move". This Is Staffordshire. 4 May 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Gradi – No Brayford bids". Sky Sports. 4 May 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Derby weigh up move for Crewe's Brayford and Bailey". BBC Sport. 14 May 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Crewe Duo Set For Derby". This Is Staffordshire. 18 May 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Derby Land Brayford & Bailey". Derby County F.C. 19 May 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Chesterfield 4–5 Derby". Derby County F.C. 26 July 2010. Retrieved 25 January 2015.
- "Brayford Claims Supporters Club Award". Derby County F.C. 19 April 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Brayford Named Player Of The Season". Deby County F.C. 30 April 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Brayford Commits His Future To Derby". Derby County. 24 August 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Clough pleased with Derby character". BBC Sport. 15 October 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Derby 0 – 2 Hull". BBC Sport. 19 November 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Brayford injury is concern for boss Clough". This is Derbyshire. 28 November 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Ipswich 1 – 0 Derby". BBC Football. 17 December 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Derby defender John Brayford ruled out for six weeks". BBC Sport. 21 February 2012. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Clough is hoping that his side can follow high standard set by the consistent Bluebirds". This is Derbyshire. 17 April 2012. Retrieved 24 January 2014.
- "Derby 4–1 Blackpool". BBC Sport. 3 November 2012. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Ram raid: West Ham line up move for Derby defender John Brayford". Daily Mirror. 14 November 2012. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "No bids for promising Ram". Eurosport. 14 November 2012. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Window talk was not a distraction for Derby County's John Brayford". This is Derbyshire. 1 February 2013. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "John Brayford set to make an early return to action for Derby County". This is Derbyshire. 8 April 2013. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Derby County: Nigel Clough fears John Brayford could leave". BBC Sport. 13 May 2013. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Cardiff City sign John Brayford from Derby County". BBC Sport. 26 July 2013. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
- "Brayford cleared for Derby return as Cardiff boss Mackay eyes Burnley defender Trippier". Daily Mail. 2 September 2013. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
- "Cardiff City defender Kevin McNaughton determined to get more Premier League football after surprise call-up". Wales Online. 3 January 2014. Retrieved 4 January 2014.
- "Scougall and Brayford join Sheffield United". BBC Sport. 24 January 2014. Retrieved 24 January 2014.
- "Defender's debt of gratitude to Clough". The Sheffield Star. 28 January 2014. Retrieved 28 January 2014.
- "Robbie Savage with Sheffield United's John Brayford". BBC Sport. 11 April 2014. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
- "Games played by John Brayford in 2013/2014". Soccerbase. Retrieved 14 May 2014.
- "John Brayford". Soccerbase. Retrieved 21 October 2011.
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