Gary Charles

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Gary Charles
Personal information
Full name Gary Andrew Charles
Date of birth (1970-04-13) 13 April 1970 (age 46)
Place of birth Newham, England
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Playing position Defender
Club information
Current team
University of Nottingham (Director of Football)
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1987–1993 Nottingham Forest 56 (1)
1989 Leicester City (loan) 8 (0)
1993–1995 Derby County 61 (3)
1995–1999 Aston Villa 79 (3)
1999 Benfica 4 (1)
1999–2002 West Ham United 5 (0)
2000 Birmingham City (loan) 3 (0)
Total 216 (8)
National team
1989–1991 England U21 6 (0)
1991 England 2 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Gary Andrew Charles (born 13 April 1970) is an English former footballer who played at right-back.

Playing career[edit]

Born in Newham, London, Charles first came into notability at Nottingham Forest, when he became a regular alongside Roy Keane, making his debut on 7 November 1987.[1] Due to his colour and skills, he was dubbed the Brazilian. His manager at Nottingham, Brian Clough, commented on his dribbling abilities by saying: "When Charles plays a one-two, he goes like a gazelle. It's so effortless - at first it looks as if he's not moving, yet he's 40 yards up the field."[2] In June 1991, he made his debut for England, playing two friendlies, one the 8th and other on the 12th, against New Zealand and Malaysia respectively. Only a few days earlier, Charles was famously fouled by Paul Gascoigne in the 1991 FA Cup Final. This was the challenge that caused Gascoigne's cruciate ligaments to tear, forcing him out of the game for several months. On 29 March 1992, he made the squad that won the Full Members Cup against Southampton.

On 29 July 1993, he made a £750,000 move to Derby County, appearing 76 times for them during a two-year spell, which included honours for PFA Team of the Year in 1993–94. On 6 January 1995, he signed with Aston Villa for a fee close to £1.4m, and assumed a regular starting role, although he was frequently injured, being out for two seasons recovering from a serious ankle injury. He appeared in 80 league matches in three and half years with the Villans, winning one League Cup. On 14 January 1999, Charles moved abroad, joining Benfica in Portugal, for a fee of 1M pounds.[3] He was the back-up choice after the failed bid for Oleh Luzhny. However, in Portugal, his problem with injuries remained; on 22 January, just six days after arriving, he sustained a sprain in his right hock with rupture of the joint capsule of his knee, being sidelined for two months.[3] He finally made his debut on a 0–3 home loss against Boavista on 14 March 1999, and played in three more games, scoring one goal, before being sidelined again on late April, due to a pubalgia.[3] Spending the entire summer recovering from injury, he was put on the transfer list by Jupp Heynckes, so he made a move to his boyhood team West Ham United on 5 October 1999 for £1.2m. During the three seasons with the Hammers, he was constantly out by injuries so he opted to end his professional career on 29 July 2002.[2][3]

Coaching career[edit]

In October 2011, Charles joined Lincoln City as Assistant Manager alongside manager David Holdsworth, but has since became the Director of Football at the University of Nottingham.

Personal life[edit]

After the end of his playing career, Charles struggled with alcoholism.[4] He however overcame these difficulties and has attained his UEFA A Coaching licence.


Nottingham Forest
Aston Villa


  1. ^ John Spencer (7 August 2005). "Triumph and despair: Gary Charles". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 September 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Simon Austin (9 October 2014). "Roy Keane and Gary Charles: A different perspective on the Man Utd legend". Simon Austin Sport. Retrieved 7 September 2015. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Nº74 - Gary Andrew Charles". Vedeta ou Marreta (in Portuguese). 13 August 2007. Retrieved 7 September 2015. 
  4. ^ "Ex-England soccer star who turned to alcohol jailed". The Telegraph. 28 January 2004. Retrieved 7 September 2015. 

External links[edit]