Toumani Diagouraga

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Toumani Diagouraga
Personal information
Full name Toumani Diagouraga[1]
Date of birth (1987-06-10) 10 June 1987 (age 27)[1]
Place of birth Paris, France
Height 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)[1]
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Brentford
Number 20
Youth career
0000–2004 Watford
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2004–2008 Watford 1 (0)
2006 Swindon Town (loan) 8 (0)
2007 Rotherham United (loan) 7 (0)
2007–2008 Hereford United (loan) 41 (2)
2008–2009 Hereford United 45 (2)
2009–2010 Peterborough United 19 (0)
2010 Brentford (loan) 20 (0)
2010– Brentford 163 (6)
2014 Portsmouth (loan) 8 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 11:22, 21 April 2015 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).

Toumani Diagouraga (born 10 June 1987) is a French professional footballer who plays as a defensive midfielder for Brentford. He began his career at Watford and signed for Hereford United and Peterborough United before joining Brentford. He has been described as a midfielder who "can keep the shape and pick up the second ball".[2] Diagouraga was known by the nickname "Dave" in the past,[3] but prefers to be known as "Toums".[4]

Career[edit]

Watford[edit]

2004–2006[edit]

Diagouraga was born in Paris to Malian parents and was spotted by a Watford scout, subsequently joining the Hornets' Academy. He signed professional terms in November 2004 at age 17[5] and starred in the youth team's run to the quarter finals of the 2004–05 FA Youth Cup.[6] His performances in the run attracted transfer interest from Premier League side Chelsea.[7] Diagouraga was allocated the number 21 shirt and received his maiden call up to the first team for the first game of the 2005–06 season, when he was an unused substitute for a 2–1 Championship defeat at home to Preston North End.[8]

Diagouraga made his first team debut with a start in Watford's 2–1 League Cup second round victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers on 20 September 2005.[9] He was substituted after 75 minutes by Junior Osborne. Diagouraga again started in the third round against Wigan Athletic, but was brought off for Ben Gill after 85 minutes of a 3–0 extra time defeat.[9] Diagouraga had to wait until 3 December 2005 for his next call up, when he was an unused substitute for a 1–1 draw with Brighton & Hove Albion.[10] He made his league debut two games later, receiving a start and being substituted for Jay DeMerit at half time of a 4–1 defeat to Burnley.[11] His next call up came for Watford's FA Cup third round tie versus Premier League side Bolton Wanderers and he completed his first 90 minutes for the club in a 3–0 defeat.[12] Diagouraga made four appearances during the 2005–06 season.[9]

2006–2008[edit]

Following Watford's promotion to the Premier League, Diagouraga failed to be called into a league squad during the 2006–07 season and instead featured in cup ties.[13] He made his first appearance of the season in a League Cup second round shootout win over Accrington Stanley on 19 September 2006.[14] His second and final appearance of the season came in a 4–1 FA Cup third–round win over Stockport County on 6 January 2007, when he came on as a 62nd-minute substitute for Damien Francis.[15] Diagouraga spent the entire 2007–08 season out on loan and departed the Hornets at the end of the season after his contract expired.[16] He made only six appearances and scored no goals during his four years with the club as a professional.[17]

Swindon Town (loan)[edit]

Diagouraga signed on loan for League One side Swindon Town on 23 March 2006 until the end of the 2005–06 season.[18] He made his debut in a 2–0 win over Chesterfield on 25 March, replacing Michael Pook at half time and putting in a performance which drew comparisons to Patrick Vieira.[18] He made eight appearances for the club and returned to Watford at the end of the season.[9]

Rotherham United (loan)[edit]

Diagouraga joined League One club Rotherham United on loan on 12 January 2007, on a deal running until the end of the 2006–07 season.[19] The terms of the deal saw him arrive at Millmoor as a makeweight in a £1000000 deal that took Millers players Will Hoskins and Lee Williamson to Watford.[20] Diagouraga made only seven appearances for the club.[13]

Hereford United (loan and permanent transfer)[edit]

Diagouraga joined League Two side Hereford United on loan on 8 August 2007, initially until December. He scored the first senior goal of his career in a 4–2 win over Bradford City on 22 September and scored again in a 1–1 draw at Chester City on 12 October.[21] In November, Diagouraga's loan was extended until the end of the 2007–08 season.[22] He made 50 appearances during the 2007–08 season, scored two goals[21] and celebrated promotion to League One at the end of the campaign, after the Bulls secured a third-place finish in League Two. Diagouraga indicated after the season that he would be interested in joining Hereford permanently, telling the Hereford Times, "all I wanted to do was play football and I have very much enjoyed it. I am not sure what is happening for next season. I might be back at Hereford. There are a few discussions going on at the moment".[16]

Diagouraga signed for Hereford permanently on 7 July 2008, signing a three-year contract.[23] He was a regular starter and scored his first goal of the 2008–09 season in a 2–2 draw at home to Tranmere Rovers on 26 December 2008.[24] He levelled the score at 1–1 in a league match with Crewe Alexandra on 7 March 2009, but his strike was cancelled out by Billy Jones' winner.[24] He was again a virtual-ever present for Hereford during the 2008–09 season, making 48 appearances and scoring two goals as the Bulls were relegated straight back to League Two after a bottom-place finish.[24] He departed Edgar Street in June 2009.[25] Across his two spells at the club, Diagouraga made 98 appearances and scored four goals.[17]

Peterborough United[edit]

Diagouraga signed for Championship side Peterborough United on a four-year contract for an undisclosed fee (believed to be in the region of £200,000) on 17 June 2009.[25] He was an ever-present through the first half of the 2009–10 season and featured in Posh's run to the League Cup fourth round, where they were knocked out by Premier League side Blackburn Rovers.[26] Diagouraga made what would be his last Peterborough appearance in a 0–0 draw with Ipswich Town on 8 December. Following that appearance, he fell behind new signings Jake Livermore and Josh Simpson in the pecking order and found himself relegated to the bench,[27] which led to his departure on loan for the rest of the season in January 2010.[28][27] He departed the club on 17 July 2010, having made 23 appearances and scored no goals.[29]

Brentford (loan and permanent transfer)[edit]

2010–2012[edit]

Diagouraga joined League One side Brentford on a one-month loan on 21 January 2010 and the deal was later extended to the end of the season.[27][28] He was awarded the no. 20 shirt and went straight into the starting lineup for Brentford's league match at Norwich City two days later, being brought off for Carl Cort after 59 minutes of the 1–0 defeat.[30] Diagouraga quickly established himself as a regular starter and laid on goals for Charlie MacDonald and Myles Weston in a 4–0 drubbing of Gillingham on 6 February.[31] He made 20 appearances during the second half of the 2009–10 season as Brentford consolidated their position in League One.[29]

Diagouraga signed for Brentford on a three-year contract in July 2010,[32] with the Bees beating off Shrewsbury Town and former club Hereford United for his signature.[3] Manager Andy Scott said, "It is no secret that Toumani has been a long-term target of mine. I feel at his age and level of experience he will be a very important player for us now and in the future".[33] He began the 2010–11 season as a starting central midfielder alongside Marcus Bean and featured in Brentford's run to the fourth round of the League Cup, starting in victories over Championship side Hull City and Premier League Everton in the second and third rounds.[34][35] Diagouraga scored his first Brentford goal in a 2–1 home win over Charlton Athletic on 2 October.[36] Two games later, he found himself dropped to the bench and did not return to a regular starting role until teammate Nicky Forster replaced Andy Scott as manager in February 2011.[37] With the Bees, Diagouraga reached the first cup final of his career, but ended up on the losing side and was sent off for two bookable offences in a 1–0 defeat to Carlisle United in the 2011 Football League Trophy Final at Wembley Stadium.[38] Diagouraga made 43 appearances during the 2010–11 season and scored one goal.[39]

Diagouraga suffered a knee injury in a 2011–12 pre-season friendly versus Hampton & Richmond Borough in July 2011, which ruled him out for two months.[40] He returned to first team action with a fifteen-minute cameo at the end of a 2–0 away victory over Oldham Athletic on 24 September.[41] He made his first start of the season in a Football League Trophy second round tie away to Charlton Athletic on 5 October.[42] He scored his first goal of the season in the 3–0 victory and twice assisted four-goal hero Mike Grella in a 6–0 win over Bournemouth in the following round.[43] Diagouraga made it two goals in two games with a late equaliser in a 2–2 draw at Carlisle United on 8 October.[44] He scored his third goal of the season in a 5–2 win over Wycombe Wanderers on 28 January 2012.[45] Diagouraga enjoyed a successful 2011–12 season, making 40 appearances and scoring a seasonal-best five goals.[46]

2012–present[edit]

Diagouraga was a virtual ever-present during the 2012–13 season, making 49 appearances and scoring one goal,[47] which came in a 2–1 win over Notts County on 29 March 2013.[47] He signed a new two-year contract in February 2013.[48] Diagouraga was denied promotion to the Championship due to a missed penalty from Marcello Trotta in the final game of the season versus Doncaster Rovers and defeat to Yeovil Town in the 2013 League One Playoff Final.[49] Now behind Adam Forshaw, George Saville and Alan McCormack in the midfield pecking order, Diagouraga featured mostly from the bench during the early stages of the 2013–14 season, before making a run of starts in late September and early October, after which he returned to the bench.[50] He received an assurance over his future from new manager Mark Warburton in January 2014,[51] but was made available for loan the following month.[52] Diagouraga made his return to the team on 29 March, coming on as a 75th-minute substitute for Nico Yennaris in a 0–0 draw with Oldham Athletic.[53] He made his first start under Mark Warburton in a 0–0 draw with Sheffield United on 1 April, lasting 71 minutes before being substituted for George Saville.[54] Diagouraga made regular appearances through to the end of the season and celebrated automatic promotion to the Championship after a 1–0 victory over Preston North End on 18 April.[55] He made 26 appearances during the 2013–14 season.[56]

It was reported in late June 2014 that Diagouraga was attracting transfer interest from League One side Coventry City,[57] with the interest being declared official the following month.[58] On 31 July and despite entering the final year of his contract, Diagouraga stated that he intended to remain at Griffin Park to fight for a first team place.[59] He made his first appearance of the 2014–15 season in an incredible League Cup first round match versus Dagenham & Redbridge on 12 August, playing the full 120 minutes of a game which Brentford won on penalties, after the score finished 6–6 after extra time.[60] He made his first league appearance of the season versus Leeds United on 27 September, replacing Andre Gray after 81 minutes of the 2–0 win.[61] He made his first league start of the campaign in the following match,[62] playing 79 minutes against former side Watford at Vicarage Road, before being substituted for Nick Proschwitz.[63] After the match, Diagouraga spoke of his concern over the club failing to discuss a new contract and that he would consider a loan move,[64] but was determined to win a place in the first team.[65] Shortly after, manager Mark Warburton challenged Diagouraga to earn a new deal.[66] He broke into the starting lineup in November, winning the club's social media Man Of The Match awards for his performances in wins over Derby County and arch-rivals Fulham.[67][68] On 9 December, Diagouraga signed a new contract which will keep him at Griffin Park until June 2017.[69] He celebrated his 200th Brentford appearance versus Leeds United at Elland Road on 7 February 2015, assisting Alex Pritchard for the only goal of the game.[70] Consistently good performances since November 2014 led Mark Warburton to assert his belief that at age 27, Diagouraga could still develop further as a player.[71] In mid-April, Diagouraga revealed his good form was down to the confidence Warburton had in him, which he didn't feel he had with previous managers.[72] On 3 May, Diagouraga was announced as the winner of the Brentford Supporters’ Player of the Year and Bees Travel Club Player of the Year awards.[73]

Portsmouth (loan)[edit]

Diagouraga joined League Two side Portsmouth on a month's loan on 17 February 2014.[74] Awarded the number 29 shirt, he made his debut in a 5–1 defeat to Scunthorpe United on 22 February, playing the full 90 minutes.[75] After three appearances and receiving "good reports",[76] Brentford manager Mark Warburton put a block on Diagouraga's loan being extended beyond March 16.[76] In a U-turn, it was reported on March 12 that Diagouraga's loan was expected to be extended, with a 24-hour recall clause inserted into the deal.[77] Diagouraga was named by manager Richie Barker as captain for the final game of his initial loan, skippering a 3–1 defeat to Fleetwood Town on 15 March.[78][79] After the match, Diagouraga reiterated his desire to stay at Fratton Park and his loan was extended until the end of the 2013–14 season on 17 March.[80][81] He was recalled by Brentford on 26 March after making eight appearances.[82]

Honours[edit]

As a player[edit]

Hereford United

Brentford

As an individual[edit]

Career statistics[edit]

As of match played 11 April 2015.
Club statistics
Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Watford 2005–06[9] Championship 1 0 1 0 2 0 0 0 4 0
2006–07[13] Premier League 0 0 1 0 1 0 2 0
Total 1 0 2 0 3 0 0 0 6 0
Swindon Town (loan) 2005–06[9] League One 8 0 8 0
Rotherham United (loan) 2006–07[13] League One 7 0 7 0
Hereford United (loan) 2007–08[21] League Two 41 2 6 0 2 0 1[a] 0 50 2
Hereford United 2008–09[24] League One 45 2 2 0 1 0 0 0 48 2
Total 86 4 8 0 3 0 1 0 98 4
Peterborough United 2009–10[29] Championship 19 0 0 0 4 0 23 0
Brentford (loan) 2009–10[29] League One 20 0 23 0
Brentford 2010–11[39] League One 32 1 2 0 2 0 7[a] 0 43 1
2011–12[46] League One 35 4 2 0 0 0 3[a] 1 40 5
2012–13[47] League One 39 1 5 0 1 0 4[b] 0 49 1
2013–14[56] League One 19 0 2 0 1 0 2[a] 0 24 0
2014–15[83] Championship 34 0 1 0 2 0 37 0
Total 179 6 12 0 6 0 16 1 213 7
Portsmouth (loan) 2013–14[56] League Two 8 0 8 0
Career total 308 10 22 0 16 0 17 1 363 11
  1. ^ a b c d Appearances in Football League Trophy
  2. ^ Two appearances in Football League Trophy, two in League One play-offs

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External links[edit]