Connolly playing for Cardiff City in 2012
|Full name||Matthew Thomas Martin Connolly|
|Date of birth||24 September 1987|
|Place of birth||Barnet, England|
|Height||1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)|
|2006–2007||→ Bournemouth (loan)||5||(1)|
|2007–2008||→ Colchester United (loan)||16||(2)|
|2008–2012||Queens Park Rangers||116||(2)|
|2012||→ Reading (loan)||6||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 10 April 2013.
† Appearances (Goals).
Matthew Thomas Martin Connolly (born 24 September 1987) is an English professional footballer who plays for Cardiff City as a defender. He joined the club from Queens Park Rangers on 22 August 2012, having previously being at Arsenal.
Born in Barnet, London, Connolly attended Nicholas Breakspear R.C school started his career as a youth at Arsenal, eventually making the reserve side. In September 2006 he was made captain of Arsenal's reserves. He made his first-team debut for Arsenal on 24 October 2006, starting a League Cup third round match against West Bromwich Albion.
On 23 November 2006 Arsenal announced he was going on loan to Bournemouth until 2 January 2007. In total he played seven games for Bournemouth (five in League One and two in the FA Cup), and scored his first goal at senior level in a 2–0 win over Nottingham Forest, on 5 December 2006. He returned to Arsenal as scheduled at the start of January 2007, and came on as substitute for Armand Traoré against Liverpool in the League Cup Quarter-finals on 9 January.
On 9 July 2007 Arsenal announced he would be spending the whole of the 2007–08 season on loan to Colchester United, although he eventually was recalled midway through the loan on 2 January 2008.
Queens Park Rangers
The same day, his transfer to Queens Park Rangers was announced, after a lack of first-team opportunities were offered by Arsenal. His debut came on 5 January, in a 1–0 loss to Chelsea in the FA Cup. He scored his first goal for QPR against Blackpool on 16 January 2010. In the meantime, in November, he received his first call-up to the England U-21 squad, where he joined Arsenal teammate Theo Walcott. His second goal came on 6 March against West Bromwich Albion in a 3–1 win.
During the 2010–11 season, Connolly played a part in QPR's Championship title win playing 36 out of 43 games.
He joined Reading on a loan on 31 January 2012 until the end of the 2011–12 season. He made his debut on 11 February 2012 in a 2–0 win against Coventry City. He only played 6 times during Reading's promotion push which resulted in Reading winning the Championship title.
On 20 August 2012, QPR had accepted an £500,000 bid from Cardiff City for Connolly's services. On 22 August, the deal was completed and Connolly signed a contract that would keep him at the Cardiff City Stadium for 3 years. He made his debut in the Severnside derby against Bristol City on 25 August. He scored his first and second goal for the club in a 3–0 win over Blackpool on 29 September. His third goal came a month later against Burnley, and later scored his fourth against Middlesbrough. Making thirty-six appearances and scoring five goals, Connolly was a key figure as Cardiff won the Championship title, the third time in successive seasons that Connolly has achieved the feat.
|Season||Club||Loan||Division||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Total||Discipline|
|Queens Park Rangers||20||0||1||0||0||0||21||0||4||0|
|Queens Park Rangers Total||116||2||1||0||8||0||125||2||17||3|
- Queens Park Rangers
- Cardiff City
- "Premier League clubs submit squad lists". premierleague.com (Premier League). 2 September 2011. Retrieved 3 February 2014.
- "Premier League Player Profile Matthew Connolly". web page. Premier League. Retrieved 18 June 2012.
- "Banfield: 'The senior players impressed me'". Arsenal F.C.
- "Connolly joins AFC Bournemouth on loan". www.arsenal.com. Arsenal FC. Archived from the original on 19 December 2007. Retrieved 23 June 2013.
- "Bournemouth 2–0 Nottm Forest". BBC Sport. 5 December 2006. Retrieved 8 March 2010.
- "Cherries v Bees". Vitalfootball. Archived from the original on 20 December 2007. Retrieved 4 January 2007.
- "Matthew Connolly joins Colchester United on loan". Arsenal F.C.
- "Colchester to lose on-loan Gunner". BBC Sport. 30 December 2007. Retrieved 12 May 2010.
- "Sky Sports – Football – Premier League – News – Connolly links up with QPR". Sky Sports.
- "Blackpool 2 – 2 QPR". BBC Sport. 16 January 2010. Retrieved 8 March 2010.
- Arsenal.com: Matt Connolly called up for Under-21 action
- "Reading sign QPR defender Matthew Connolly on loan". BBC Sport. 31 January 2012. Retrieved 31 January 2012.
- "Royals swoop for Matthew Connolly". Reading Football Club. 10 October 2013. Retrieved 31 January 2012.
- "Cardiff City close to signing QPR defender Matthew Connolly". South Wales Echo. 20 August 2012. Retrieved 3 February 2014.
- "DEAL DONE: CONNOLLY SIGNS FOR CITY". Cardiff City FC. 22 August 2012. Retrieved 10 October 2013.