Nugent playing for Leicester City in 2013
|Full name||David James Nugent|
|Date of birth||2 May 1985|
|Place of birth||Huyton, England|
|Height||5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)|
|2005–2007||Preston North End||94||(33)|
|2009–2010||→ Burnley (loan)||30||(6)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 15:11, 19 September 2016 (UTC).
Before joining Middlesbrough, Nugent made 449 appearances in the Football League and Premier League playing for Bury, Preston North End, Portsmouth, Burnley and Leicester City. While a Preston player he made his debut for England, having played for the under-21 team earlier in his career.
Born in Huyton, Merseyside, Nugent was a member of the Liverpool youth academy but left aged 15. It was only once he changed his position that he then became a professional with Bury, joining the club's successful Youth and Centre of Excellence department. After making his debut as a substitute against Port Vale in March 2002 at the age of just 16, Nugent initially struggled to live up to his early potential, but an explosive start to the 2004–05 League Two season saw several larger clubs take an interest.
Preston North End
Although a target for rivals Burnley, Nugent opted to join Preston North End rather than Northampton Town from Bury in January 2005 for a fee of £100,000 and proved himself more than worthy at Championship level.
He scored 10 league goals in 32 Championship appearances in 2005–06, as Preston finished fourth, losing to Leeds United in the playoff semi-final, thus failing to gain promotion. Despite transfer speculation, Nugent spent the following season at Preston, scoring 15 goals in 43 appearances, and winning England recognition. Preston finished seventh in 2006–07.
Nugent left Preston during the summer of 2007.
After both Sunderland and Portsmouth had bids in the region of £6 million accepted for the player, Nugent was eventually unveiled as a Pompey player at a press conference alongside John Utaka on 11 July 2007. However, rumours followed just weeks later that Derby County were considering a bid for Nugent and that he would be leaving Portsmouth in the same transfer window he arrived in. Nugent scored on his debut in a non-competitive 8–0 win against Isle of Wight side Newport and later signed many autographs in a fan-filled pitch invasion. In a post-match press conference following a League Cup game early on in Nugent's Pompey career, in which he scored his first goal for the club, Portsmouth manager Harry Redknapp publicly stated Nugent would be free to leave the club if the right offer came in to help fund a move for more players. However, Nugent stated he wanted to stay at Portsmouth.
Nugent appeared frequently for Portsmouth in the FA Cup, scoring a goal in their third round tie against Ipswich Town. His role culminated in coming on for John Utaka in the 69th minute of the final against Cardiff City, eventually winning the trophy.
The next season and after 18 months at the club, Nugent scored his first Premier League goal – against former manager Harry Redknapp at Tottenham Hotspur in a 1–1 draw on 18 January 2009. Two matches later he scored his second goal at Fulham and followed this up with his first league goal at Fratton Park, scoring against Liverpool on 7 February 2009. However, these were to be Nugent's only top flight goals for Pompey.
On 5 August 2009, it was reported that Nugent had been involved in an alleged bust-up with team mate Marc Wilson during Portsmouth's pre-season trip to Portugal. Both players were sent home and subsequently fined two weeks' wages by the club.
On 1 September 2009, it was reported that Nugent was in talks with Burnley about a loan move. Thirty minutes after the transfer window closed it was reported that Burnley had signed Nugent on a six-month-long loan deal with a view to a permanent move, subject to Premier League clearance. On 12 September, he made his debut for the Clarets when he replaced Martin Paterson 70 minutes into the game against Liverpool at Anfield. After coming on as a second-half substitute for the Clarets on his home debut against Sunderland, Nugent scored two goals, helping Burnley to a 3–1 win. Nugent scored his third goal of the season against Bolton Wanderers.
On 30 January 2010, Nugent was told that he had to go back to Portsmouth and train with the club, but was then told to travel back to Burnley. After two days of travelling back and forth between Portsmouth and Burnley, new manager Brian Laws triggered an extension clause in Nugent's contract. Nugent signed another loan agreement with Burnley on 1 February which would keep him at the club on loan until June. He repaid the faith shown in him by Laws by opening the scoring in the home win against West Ham United on 6 February.
Return to Portsmouth
After failing to renegotiate a permanent deal with Burnley or attract an alternative Premier League club, Nugent returned to newly relegated Portsmouth in the 2010–11 pre-season. He was a regular starter as a left sided forward. After an initial goal drought that saw him fail to hit the net until his goal in a 6–1 defeat of Leicester City on 24 September 2010 (his first for Pompey since February 2009), Nugent finished the season as Portsmouth's top goalscorer, scoring 14 goals in all competitions.
On 5 July 2011, Nugent signed for Leicester City on a three-year deal after his contract with Portsmouth expired. He made his competitive debut in a 1–0 win over Coventry City on 6 August 2011, scoring his first goal for the club in a 2–1 defeat to Bristol City on 17 August. On 18 February 2012, Nugent scored the winning goal to knock Premier League side Norwich City out of the FA Cup at Carrow Road and put Leicester through to the quarter-finals. Nugent finished the 2011–12 season as the club's top goalscorer with 16 goals in all competitions.
On 23 September 2012, Nugent scored his first career hat-trick in a 3–1 win against Hull City at the King Power Stadium. Nugent's form continued with further strikes against Bristol City, Watford and Nottingham Forest. During the game against Nottingham Forest, Nugent suffered a neck injury which later was revealed to be a slipped disc. Nugent started the game the following week against Ipswich Town and scored two goals but had to be substituted after half an hour for Jamie Vardy because of the neck injury. Nugent then missed both the matches against Sheffield Wednesday and Leeds United. He made his return as a substitute against Derby County. He came off the bench to score two goals to give Leicester a 4–1 win over their East Midlands rivals. He ended 2012–13 as Leicester's top scorer for the second consecutive season.
On 22 February 2014, Nugent scored his 50th league goal for Leicester against Ipswich Town. During 2013–14, he scored 20 league goals and set up a further 12 as Leicester secured promotion into the Premier League as 2013–14 Football League Championship title winners.
On 9 July 2014, Nugent signed a two-year contract extension until the summer of 2016 with Leicester City.
Nugent's first Premier League goal for Leicester came with a penalty in a 5–3 home win against Manchester United on 21 September 2014. On 1 January 2015, he scored his second goal of the season, and first from open play, after coming on as a substitute in Leicester's 2–2 draw with Liverpool at Anfield. On 22 February, Nugent scored in a 2–2 draw with his boyhood club Everton at Goodison Park. He scored his fourth goal of the season in a 4–3 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane on 21 March.
On 14 August 2015, Nugent signed a three-year contract with Championship club Middlesbrough for an undisclosed fee, reported to be an initial £2 million, with an added £2 million if the club secured promotion. On 12 September, he scored his first goal for the club in a 2–0 win over Milton Keynes Dons at the Riverside.
He made his debut for the England under-21 team against Wales in February 2005. He scored his first goal for the team on his debut, in the 2–2 draw with Moldova on 15 August 2006. Teamed up front again with Arsenal's Theo Walcott, he scored his second goal in the 3–2 win over Switzerland on 6 September 2006 that advanced the team into the play-off round of 2007 UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualification. He scored his third goal against Spain.
On 19 March 2007, following much speculation after Steve McClaren confirmed he had been watching Nugent, David was called into the full England squad to replace the injured Darren Bent of Charlton Athletic.
On 28 March 2007, Nugent made his debut as a late substitute for England in a UEFA Euro 2008 qualifying match against Andorra in Barcelona. He marked the occasion by scoring the final goal in a 3–0 win in the 93rd minute, tapping in a goal-bound shot from Jermain Defoe as it was about to cross the line. Nugent, in his post-match press interview, expressed genuine satisfaction over having accomplished a "1 Goal/1 Cap" national team record; Nugent is one of just three players to have exactly one substitute appearance and one goal for England, the others being Paul Goddard and Francis Jeffers. Since then, Nugent has failed to secure another outing with England.
He was the first Preston player to play for the national team since Tom Finney some 49 years previously and the first England national team footballer from a club playing in the Football League since David James of West Ham in 2003. He was also the first Football League outfield player since Michael Gray of Sunderland in 1999.
- As of match played 17 September 2016
|Club||Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Other||Total|
|Preston North End||2004–05||Championship||18||8||—||—||3[c]||1||21||9|
|Burnley (loan)||2009–10||Premier League||30||6||—||—||—||30||6|
- As of match played 28 March 2007
- As of match played 28 March 2007. England score listed first, score column indicates score after each Nugent goal.
|1||28 March 2007||Estadi Olímpic Lluís Companys, Barcelona, Spain||1||Andorra||3–0||3–0||UEFA Euro 2008 qualification|||
- Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2010). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2010–11. Edinburgh: Mainstream Publishing. p. 311. ISBN 978-1-84596-601-0.
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- Burnley 3–1 Sunderland
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- "D. Nugent". Soccerway. Perform Group. Retrieved 14 June 2016.
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