||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (February 2013)|
Hunt playing for Reading in 2011
|Full name||Noel Hunt|
|Date of birth||26 December 1982|
|Place of birth||Waterford, Ireland|
|Height||5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
|2001–2002||→ Waterford United (loan)||9||(5)|
|2002–2003||Republic of Ireland U21||4||(1)|
|2007||Republic of Ireland B||1||(0)|
|2008–||Republic of Ireland||3||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 10:17, 10 April 2013 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).
Noel Hunt (born 26 December 1982 in Waterford, Ireland) is an Irish footballer, who currently plays as a striker for English Premier League side Reading. His brother Stephen Hunt plays for Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Football League Championship.
Club career 
Hunt began playing junior club football in Waterford, before being signed by Damien Richardson for League of Ireland club, Shamrock Rovers in Dublin in 2001, aged 18. He made his competitive debut in a 3–2 League of Ireland Cup win over Shelbourne on 29 October 2001, and scored his first competitive goal in the same competition in January.
Rovers then loaned him out to his hometown club Waterford United where he scored five league goals in the First Division in the 2001–02 season. Scoring on his debut in December 2001 he was later embroiled in controversy as the Blues were deducted three points due to incorrect registration.
The following season was the last winter football season and in the shortened 27 game series, new manager Liam Buckley played Hunt and he rewarded the club by being top club goalscorer with eleven league goals and two FAI Cup goals to propel Rovers to the FAI Cup final and third place in the league.
During this time he also made his European debut playing twice for the club in the UEFA Cup. His final match for Shamrock Rovers was on the last day of the season, 24 January 2003, when he was substituted to a hero's reception in a game where Rovers beat Longford Town 3–2 to secure a place in the UEFA Intertoto Cup. He was awarded the Shamrock Rovers Player of the Year award that season. Hunt scored a total of 14 goals for the "Hoops".
Hunt moved to Scottish Premier League club Dunfermline Athletic in a £100,000 deal on 27 January 2003, going on to win the clubs' Young Player of the Season award for the 2003–04 season. His pace and aggressive running won praise from Dunfermline supporters, but his time at the club was disrupted somewhat by a recurring knee injury. He joined Dundee United in June 2006 for £50,000, scoring his first goal on 5 August against Rangers in his second match for the club, a 2–2 draw. On 14 October he scored against Celtic in a 4–1 defeat and scored the winner against Kilmarnock in November. His goals continued with winners against St. Mirren, Inverness Caledonian Thistle, and Motherwell. However, after injuring himself scoring the winner against Motherwell in December, he failed to score again until his goal in the 4–0 away victory over Hearts in March 2007.
In the 2007–08 season, Hunt scored three times in the opening six league matches, as well as a goal in the League Cup Final, a match United lost to Rangers on penalties amidst refereeing controversy, during a 2–2 draw. On 31 October 2007 in a League Cup match against Hamilton Academical, he scored his first hat-trick for United in a 3–1 win.
On 23 July 2008 Hunt moved to Championship side Reading for an undisclosed fee rumoured to be around £600,000. Having taken the club's number 11 shirt, recently vacated by John Oster, Hunt joined up with the squad's tour of Sweden and scored his first goal in a 3–1 win over Halmstads BK on 29 July.
In the absence of Reading manager Steve Coppell (who was already in Sweden), Director of Football Nicky Hammond said that although "Dundee United didn't want to lose Noel but understood his real desire to embark upon a new challenge with Reading Football Club. From my conversations with Noel, it is clear that he possesses the qualities of hunger and determination that Steve Coppell wants at this club as we attempt to regain a place in the Premier League."
He played his first competitive game for Reading on 12 August 2008, scoring the deciding goal in a 2–1 win over Dagenham & Redbridge in the first round of the Football League Cup. He also scored on his second appearance on 26 August 2008, scoring the first of five goals by Reading in a 5–1 result against Luton Town. Hunt scored his first league goals for Reading when he scored twice in a 6–0 win over Sheffield Wednesday.
In February 2012 Hunt was nominated for the PFA Player in the Community award.
Hunt scored his first Premier League goal for Reading in the 2–2 draw with Newcastle United, heading them 2–1 up from a Jobi McAnuff cross. He scored his second Premier League goal for Reading in a 2–2 draw with Swansea a week later, volleying in from inside the box.
Career statistics 
- As of match played 6 April 2013
|Club||Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Other||Total|
|Shamrock Rovers||2001–02||League of Ireland||0||0||0||0||2||1||0||0||2||1|
|Waterford United (loan)||9||5||0||0||0||0||0||0||9||5|
|Shamrock Rovers total||25||11||5||2||2||1||2||0||34||14|
|Dunfermline Athletic||2002–03||Scottish Premier League||12||1||4||0||0||0||0||0||16||1|
|Dundee United||2006–07||Scottish Premier League||28||10||1||0||2||0||0||0||31||10|
International career 
Hunt made his debut as a substitute for his country at Rugby Park in an Republic of Ireland under-21 national football team friendly game against Scotland in February 2003. He went on to play four times at this level scoring once in Tbilisi. He was named in the Republic of Ireland "B" squad on 8 November 2007, for the match against Scotland on 20 November at the Excelsior Stadium in Airdrie, which ended in a 1–1 draw.
He was called up to the senior squad for the Poland friendly in November 2008, after injuries to Robbie Keane and Aiden McGeady, making his debut in the game, coming on as a substitute on the 60th minute.
His second cap for the Republic of Ireland came in the World Cup Qualifying tie against Italy in Bari, Southern Italy. He came on as a substitute for his then Reading colleague, Kevin Doyle.
Hunt started his first competitive game in Ireland's last World Cup qualifying tie in October 2009.
Outside of football 
- "Hoops win exciting cup tie". Shamrock Rovers F.C. Archived from the original on 13 January 2013. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
- "Hoops hit Longford for six". Shamrock Rovers F.C. Archived from the original on 13 January 2013. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
- "Registration required". Irish Times.[dead link]
- "Registration required". Irish Times.[dead link]
- "Pars win striker Hunt". BBC Sport. 28 December 2002. Retrieved 1 January 2008.
- "Hunt requires surgery". BBC Sport. 10 May 2003. Retrieved 1 January 2008.
- "New faces welcomed to Tannadice". BBC Sport. 20 June 2006. Retrieved 1 January 2008.
- "Halmstads Bollklubb 1–3 Reading". Halmstads Bollklubb. Retrieved 18 November 2012.
- "Noel Hunt joins Reading". Reading F.C. 23 July 2008. Archived from the original on 27 May 2012. Retrieved 23 July 2008.
- "Five-star Royals ease through". Reading F.C. 26 August 2008. Archived from the original on 3 June 2012. Retrieved 26 August 2008.
- "Reading 6–0 Sheffield Wednesday". Reading F.C. Archived from the original on 31 May 2012. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
- "Noel nominated for Community work". Reading F.C. Archived from the original on 28 April 2012. Retrieved 10 April 2013.
- "Connor and Gartland earn 'B' call-up". RTÉ. 8 November 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2008.
- "Ireland pegged back by late strike". Irish Times. 20 November 2007. Retrieved 7 January 2008.[dead link]
- "McGeady and Keane ruled out of Poland friendly". Football Association of Ireland. 16 November 2008. Archived from the original on 6 March 2012. Retrieved 18 November 2012.
- "Ireland suffer defeat for first time under Trapattoni to clinical Poland side". Football Association of Ireland. 20 November 2008. Archived from the original on 6 March 2012. Retrieved 18 November 2012.
- "Spirited Ireland come from behind to take a precious point from Italy". Football Association of Ireland. 28 April 2009. Retrieved 18 November 2012.
- "Ireland complete World Cup first phase unbeaten". Football Association of Ireland. 14 October 2009. Retrieved 18 November 2012.
- Fogarty, John (9 July 2012). "Downing a pint to Davy’s venture". Irish Examiner. Retrieved 27 November 2012.