||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (November 2010)|
|Full name||William Richard Hoskins|
|Date of birth||6 May 1986|
|Place of birth||Nottingham, England|
|Height||5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)|
|2007||→ Millwall (loan)||10||(2)|
|2008||→ Nottingham Forest (loan)||2||(0)|
|2011–2014||Brighton & Hove Albion||18||(1)|
|2012||→ Sheffield United (loan)||12||(2)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 22:56, 12 February 2013 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).
William Richard "Will" Hoskins (born 6 May 1986) is an English footballer who plays as a striker for Oxford United. He came through the youth scheme at Rotherham United and has represented England at many levels up to under-20.
Hoskins was born in Nottingham, Nottinghamshire where his career began at local club Notts County's School of Excellence before joining Rotherham United's youth system in South Yorkshire. Hoskins was heralded as a talent when at just 17 he came into the first team fold at Rotherham and made an impact scoring both goals in a 2–1 win at Wigan Athletic in December 2003. However, he had a stop start early career, only making one start under managers Ronnie Moore and subsequently Mick Harford.
Alan Knill took over as manager halfway through the 2005–06 season, with the Millers halfway through their first campaign back in League One and saved the club from a second successive relegation. As youth coach Knill brought Hoskins up through the youth ranks at Millmoor and handed 12 further starts that season. Hoskins reciprocated the faith shown in him by being the only one of six out-of-contract players at the end of the 2005–06 season to sign an immediate contract renewal. Knill offered the youngster an initial one-year deal, stating that should Hoskins prove himself in the first team, he would be rewarded with a new contract before Christmas.
Hoskins had an excellent 2006–07 pre-season alongside his new strike partner Delroy Facey, notably scoring twice against Scottish Cup finalists Gretna. However, he suffered a slight injury before the first match of the season and Dave Hibbert had to step up to take his place. Hoskins returned to the squad less than a week later, coming on as a second half substitute against Huddersfield Town. The following week he came off the bench to score the winner against Blackpool, securing his place in the starting eleven for the Millers. He was in the team consistently, but never had a regular strike partner due to injuries.
By the end of December he had scored 15 goals in 22 appearances—seven of those in successive away games—making him the third highest scorer in League One. Due to his consistent excellent performances he was awarded the Player of the Month award in October and was valued at an estimated £750,000+ by The Guardian.
After turning down a contract extension, Hoskins signed for Premier League club Watford along with teammate Lee Williamson on 5 January 2007 for a combined fee of £1.2 million. He made his debut on 13 January 2007 after coming off the bench against Liverpool. He struggled to make an impact at Watford in the 2007–08 campaign, making only three appearances. He did move on loan to League One side Millwall in September 2007, where he made 12 appearances, netting four goals in his spell. He then returned to Watford and after months of speculation, he signed for Nottingham Forest on loan.
On 12 August 2008, Hoskins scored his first goal for Watford, an 88th minute winner against Bristol Rovers in the first round of the 2008–09 League Cup. On 24 January 2009, Hoskins scored the third goal in the sixty-seventh minute which led to the 4–3 victory against Crystal Palace in the third round of the FA Cup.
Hoskins completed his transfer to Nottingham Forest on 8 February 2008, joining the club on loan for the rest of the season, with Forest having the option of signing Hoskins permanently in the summer for £500,000, if he impressed manager Colin Calderwood. He made his debut in a 2–0 win over Millwall at the City Ground and impressed in his first two games in a Reds shirt, being credited for his liveliness and willingness to work hard. He endured a frustrating spell on the sidelines with a troublesome back injury, and with Brett Ormerod joining from Preston North End, Hoskins returned to Watford.
In June 2010, Hoskins signed a two-year contract with Bristol Rovers. During the early parts of the season, he boasted a 1:2 goal to game ratio after a great start to the 2010/11 League One campaign. On 6 November 2010 during an FA Cup first round tie against Darlington, he suffered a sprained ankle injury, ruling him out for around four weeks, but came off the bench two weeks later away to Brighton & Hove Albion. In March 2011, with Bristol Rovers struggling, Hoskins was said to be leaving Rovers at the end of the season. He signed a deal with the League One champions Brighton & Hove Albion after Bristol Rovers were relegated from League One.
Brighton & Hove Albion
On 20 May 2011, Hoskins joined Championship side Brighton & Hove Albion on a two-year deal for an undisclosed fee. He played 45 minutes in Brighton's first pre-season game of the season against Burgess Hill. He played the second half, partnering Craig Mackail-Smith, and scored a low drive from 30 yards after some neat play from Jamie Smith. He scored his first competitive goal for Brighton on his début against Cardiff City in a 3–1 win away from home. Craig Mackail-Smith released him with a through ball and he smashed the ball in the net with a fantastic finish to put Brighton 3–0 up. On 31 January 2012 Hoskins joined Sheffield United on loan for the rest of the season. Hoskins was forced to cut his loan spell short with Sheffield United and return to Brighton just before the end of the season due a hernia problem. His second Brighton goal came as they knocked out Premier League side Newcastle United of the FA Cup on 5 January 2013.
Hoskins made an immediate impact when first introduced into the England U-18 squad, setting up the winning goal against Sweden on 29 April 2004. He made his full first team debut for the International U20s side in the 4–0 defeat to Russia on 16 August 2005 in Moscow.
- "Moment scout Pat knew Will was the one". sheffieldtelegraph.co.uk. 9 February 2012. Retrieved 14 February 2012.
- League 1 Top Scorers
- "Tactical Formation". Football-Lineups.com. Retrieved 20 January 2007.
- "Forest seal Hoskins loan switch". BBC. 8 February 2008. Retrieved 25 October 2011.
- "Hoskins signs for Bristol Rovers". BBC Sport. 25 June 2010.
- Albion sign Hoskins, Seagulls World, 20 May 2011. Retrieved 20 May 2011
- Pre-season v Burgess Hill, The Argus, 10 June 2011. Retrieved 11 June 2011
- "Cardiff 1 - 3 Brighton". BBC. 17 August 2011. Retrieved 16 January 2013.
- "Hoskins checks in". Sheffield United F.C. 31 January 2012. Retrieved 31 January 2012.
- "A way back for Will Hoskins". The Sheffield Star. 25 April 2012. Retrieved 29 April 2012.
- "Brighton 2-0 Newcastle". BBC. 5 January 2013. Retrieved 16 January 2013.
- England U19 vs Sweden report[dead link]