Craig Shakespeare

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Craig Shakespeare
Craig Shakespeare.png
Shakespeare with Leicester City in 2010
Personal information
Full name Craig Robert Shakespeare
Date of birth (1963-10-26) 26 October 1963 (age 55)
Place of birth Birmingham, England
Height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Playing position Midfielder
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1981–1989 Walsall 284 (45)
1989–1990 Sheffield Wednesday 17 (0)
1990–1993 West Bromwich Albion 112 (12)
1993–1997 Grimsby Town 106 (10)
1997–1998 Scunthorpe United 4 (0)
1998 Telford United 1 (1)
2000 Hednesford Town 1 (0)
Teams managed
2006 West Bromwich Albion (caretaker)
2017 Leicester City
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Craig Robert Shakespeare (born 26 October 1963) is an English football coach and former player.

A midfielder, he began his playing career with Walsall, where he made over 350 appearances. After a brief spell with Sheffield Wednesday, he also made over 100 appearances for both West Bromwich Albion and Grimsby Town.

As a coach, Shakespeare has previously worked at West Bromwich Albion, Leicester City and Hull City. He was briefly caretaker manager at West Brom in 2006 and took a similar role at Leicester in February 2017 before he was appointed manager in March. He was appointed permanent manager of Leicester City on 8 June 2017 after signing a 3-year deal. However, Shakespeare was subsequently sacked by Leicester on 17 October 2017 after a poor run of results in matches.

Playing career[edit]

In his playing days he was an attacking midfielder; he favoured his left foot and his preferred position was on the left side of midfield. He signed as an apprentice at Walsall in September 1979, turning professional in November 1981. Shakespeare rates his goal in a 2–2 League Cup draw against Chelsea in October 1984 as the best of his career.[1] In 1987–88 he helped Walsall to win promotion to Division Two via the playoffs, an achievement which he has since described as his greatest in football.[1] He played well over 350 games for the Saddlers, scoring 59 goals, and in 1989 he moved to Sheffield Wednesday, then in the First Division, for a fee of £300,000.

He spent less than a year at Hillsborough, before moving to West Bromwich Albion for £275,000. He stayed at Albion for over three years, making 128 appearances in total and becoming the team's first choice penalty taker. He scored twice from the penalty spot in Albion's first ever game in the Third Division, a 6–3 victory over Exeter City in August 1991.

Albion were promoted in 1993, but Shakespeare moved to Grimsby Town, rejoining Alan Buckley under whom he had played at Walsall. He later moved on to Scunthorpe United, and also played for three non-league clubs before retiring.

Coaching career[edit]

In 1999, he re-joined West Brom as Football in the Community Officer. In this role, he was responsible for promoting football at grass roots level in the local community. He later took up the post of academy coach, then in 2006 became Reserve Team Coach. In October 2006, following the departure of Bryan Robson and then his assistant Nigel Pearson (who had been caretaker manager for a period of four weeks), Shakespeare was given charge of the first team for one game pending the arrival of Tony Mowbray.[2] The game was away to Crystal Palace; Albion won 2–0.[3]

Shakespeare left Albion in June 2008 to become Pearson's assistant manager at Leicester City,[4] a move that was confirmed on 1 July.[5] As well as having worked together on the West Bromwich Albion coaching staff, the two had also played together at Sheffield Wednesday. Shakespeare once said that Pearson was the best captain he had ever played under.[6]

Shakespeare then followed Pearson to Hull City, which lasted until 2011.[7][8]

He then followed Pearson back to Leicester City when the latter was reappointed manager there in November 2011.[8] Following Pearson's sacking in July 2015,[9] Shakespeare remained as assistant manager to incoming manager Claudio Ranieri.

When Sam Allardyce was made England manager in 2016 Shakespeare took on a coaching position alongside his Leicester job, but left when Allardyce resigned after just one match.[10]

When Ranieri was sacked on 23 February 2017, Shakespeare took over as caretaker manager. His first game in charge was a 3–1 victory over Liverpool in the Premier League.[11] On 12 March, he was named as the new manager of Leicester City.[12] On 18 March, Shakespeare became the first Premier League manager ever to achieve 3 goals per game in his first three matches in charge.[13] Then on 1 April, he became the only English manager to win his first four league matches.[14]

On 8 June, Shakespeare signed a 3-year deal to be the permanent manager for Leicester City.[15] On 17 October 2017, he was fired after poor performances left the club in the bottom three of the standings and in danger of relegation.[16]

On 1 December 2017, Shakespeare was appointed first team coach at Everton following the appointment of Sam Allardyce as manager the previous day.[17]

Managerial statistics[edit]

As of match played 16 October 2017
Managerial record by team and tenure
Team From To Record Ref
P W D L Win %
West Bromwich Albion (caretaker) 17 October 2006 18 October 2006 1 1 0 0 100.0 [2][18]
Leicester City 23 February 2017 17 October 2017[19] 26 11 6 9 042.3 [18]
Total 27 12 6 9 044.4




  1. ^ a b "Pick a Number..." West Bromwich Albion F.C. 6 November 2007. Archived from the original on 6 January 2008. Retrieved 6 November 2007.
  2. ^ a b "Pearson stands down at West Brom". BBC Sport. 17 October 2006. Retrieved 22 March 2017.
  3. ^ "Shakey enjoys night in spotlight". West Bromwich Albion F.C. 18 October 2006. Retrieved 12 November 2007.[permanent dead link]
  4. ^ "Shakespeare leaves Albion". West Bromwich Albion F.C. 27 June 2008. Archived from the original on 28 September 2008. Retrieved 28 June 2008.
  5. ^ "Pearson Adds Duo To Backroom Staff". Leicester City F.C. 1 July 2008. Archived from the original on 19 September 2008. Retrieved 1 July 2008.
  6. ^ "Craig Shakespeare – Simply the Best". West Bromwich Albion F.C. 15 May 2007. Archived from the original on 5 August 2012. Retrieved 16 July 2008.
  7. ^ "Hull City name Nigel Pearson as new manager". BBC Sport. 29 June 2010. Retrieved 29 June 2010.
  8. ^ a b "Leicester City appoint Hull City's Nigel Pearson as boss". BBC Sport. 15 November 2011. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  9. ^ "Nigel Pearson: Leicester boss's sacking linked to son's actions". BBC Sport. 1 July 2015. Retrieved 12 September 2018.
  10. ^ Tanner, Rob. "Leicester City's Shakespeare out of England set-up". Leicester Mercury. Retrieved 7 March 2017.[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ "Leicester City 3–1 Liverpool". BBC Sport. 27 February 2017. Retrieved 27 February 2017.
  12. ^ Herlihy, Anthony. "BREAKING: #lcfc is pleased to confirm Craig Shakespeare as its First Team Manager for the rest of the 2016/17 season". Leicester City (Twitter). Retrieved 12 March 2017.[non-primary source needed]
  13. ^ Jack Skelton (18 March 2017). "West Ham United v Leicester City". BBC Sport. Retrieved 20 March 2017.
  14. ^ "Leicester City: Craig Shakespeare proud of historic start as manager". BBC Sport. 1 April 2017. Retrieved 2 April 2017.
  15. ^ "Craig Shakespeare: Leicester City caretaker named permanent manager". BBC sport. 8 June 2017.
  16. ^ Guardian Sport staff (17 October 2017). "Craig Shakespeare sacked by Leicester City after four months in charge". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 October 2017.
  17. ^ "Lee And Shakespeare Join Coaching Staff". Everton F.C. 1 December 2017. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
  18. ^ a b "Managers: Craig Shakespeare". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 5 October 2017.
  19. ^ "Leicester City sack manager Craig Shakespeare after one Premier League win in eight". Sky Sports. Retrieved 17 October 2017.

External links[edit]