|Full name||Ian Anthony Pearce|
|Date of birth||7 May 1974|
|Place of birth||Bury St Edmunds, England|
|Height||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|Oxted & District|
|1997–2004||West Ham United||142||(9)|
|2008||→ Southampton (loan)||1||(0)|
|2008–2009||Oxted & District||?||(?)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
Ian Anthony Pearce (born 7 May 1974) is an English former professional footballer who played as a defender from 1990 until 2012, notably in the Premier League for Blackburn Rovers where he won the title in 1995.
Pearce also played top flight football for Chelsea, West Ham United and Fulham. He played in the Football League for Southampton and Lincoln City, as well as for non-league sides Oxted & District, Kingstonian and Lingfield. Whilst with Lincoln he also worked as the clubs assistant manager to Chris Sutton.
Pearce started his career at Oxted & District FC before signing for Chelsea during the 1991–92 season. He made his debut on 11 May 1991 in a 2–2 draw with Aston Villa. He made five substitute appearances in three seasons for the west London club, before moving to Blackburn Rovers in October 1993 for a fee of £300,000.
Pearce's Blackburn debut was in a League Cup third-round replay against Shrewsbury Town on 9 Nov 1993, in which Pearce scored the winning goal in extra time. He scored his first League goal in April 1994 after coming on as a substitute in a 2–1 win at West Ham United, a result which guaranteed Rovers a place in Europe for the first time in their history. He moved to centre-half the following season, forming a formidable partnership with Colin Hendry, and won a Premier League medal in the 1994–95 season.
West Ham United
Pearce moved to West Ham United for £2.3 million on 9 October 1997. After playing regularly in his first two seasons with the club, and being named as runner-up in the 1999 Hammer of the Year award, he played just 37 minutes in 1999–2000 after injuring knee ligaments in a clash with teammate Stuart Pearce. Pearce was out for 14 months, returning on 28 October 2000 against Newcastle United. He failed to find his true fitness, and only made 17 appearances in the 2000–01 season. He was able to take part in pre-season training for the first time in five years in 2002–03, and despite some further niggling injuries, made 33 appearances in all competitions. He continued his form into the 2003–04, registering 26 starts in the First Division, before moving to Fulham in the January transfer window.
Pearce signed for Fulham in January 2004 in a deal which involved an undisclosed transfer fee and Andy Melville moving to West Ham. He started nine games of that season as Fulham's first choice centre back. He made his debut in a match against Tottenham Hotspur at Loftus Road on 31 January 2004.
However, in his 2004–05 season, he was hampered with a back injury sustained in December 2004. He did manage to play a few reserve games at the end of the season, but did not play for the first team. In August 2005, he was close to signing for Norwich City, but pulled out because of family reasons.
Pearce was praised as 'Best player in pre season' by then Fulham manager Chris Coleman. His admirable resolve was demonstrated when in a 1–1 draw against Portsmouth he played through a painful foot injury only to score an equaliser before time and secure a critical point for Fulham.
Pearce joined Surrey South Eastern Combination side Oxted & District, the club where his career began, in September 2008 and scored on his debut. Pearce signed for Kingstonian of the Isthmian League Premier Division on 21 August 2009 as an attacking midfielder and forward and made his competitive debut for the club against Aveley. He left the club on 27 September.
On 9 October 2009, in addition to his contract as assistant manager, Pearce signed a playing contract with Lincoln City. On 17 October, Pearce made his playing debut for Lincoln, coming on as a substitute in their 1–0 away defeat to Northampton Town. He was sent off as an unused substitute in a match against Cheltenham Town on 14 November 2009. He returned for Kingstonian on 19 March 2011, in the 2–0 win over Lowestoft Town. He also played for Lingfield in 2011, where he linked up with fellow ex-pro Nicky Forster.
Pearce was part of the England under-20 team that came third in the 1993 FIFA World Youth Championship, playing in all six matches and scoring one goal. He was capped three times for England at under-21 level in the mid-1990s, but never made the senior national side.
On 30 September 2009, Pearce signed for Lincoln City as the club's assistant manager to newly appointed Chris Sutton, a former teammate at Blackburn Rovers. He left when Sutton resigned on 29 September 2010.
|Club performance||League||Cup||League Cup||Continental||Total|
|England||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|1993–94||Blackburn Rovers||Premier League||5||1||5||1|
|1997–98||West Ham United||Premier League||30||1||30||1|
|2009–10||Lincoln City||League Two||10||0||1||0||11||0|
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Ian Pearce, the £300,000 signing from Chelsea last October
- Bateman, Cynthia (10 Nov 1993). "Understudy stars in the taming of the Shrews". The Guardian. p. 16 – via Newspapers.com.
- Wheelock, Paul (10 February 2016). "FLASHBACK: West Ham United 1 Blackburn Rovers 2". Lancashire Telegraph. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
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- Hogg, Tony (2005). Who's Who of West Ham United. Profile Sports Media. p. 162. ISBN 1-903135-50-8.
- "Pearce joins Fulham". BBC Sport. 20 January 2004. Retrieved 14 October 2007.
- "Fulham 1–1 Portsmouth". BBC Sport. 31 March 2007. Retrieved 4 September 2009.
- Box Turnbull, Greig (1 October 2008). "You're dropped! £3.5M SOCCER STAR FALLS 11 LEAGUES". The Mirror – via HighBeam Research.
- "Pearce Pens Playing Contract". Lincoln City F.C. 9 October 2009. Archived from the original on 7 March 2012. Retrieved 6 September 2010.
- "Northampton 1–0 Lincoln City". BBC Sport. 17 October 2009. Retrieved 6 September 2010.
- "Lincoln City 1–1 Cheltenham". BBC Sport. 14 November 2009. Retrieved 4 May 2010.
- "Ian Pearce". kingstonian.net. Retrieved 20 November 2017.
- "FA CUP LIVE: Lingfield v Horsham". West Sussex County Times. 21 September 2011 – via HighBeam Research.
- "Ex-pros heading for The Salts?". Rye & Battle Observer. 14 September 2011. Retrieved 20 November 2017 – via HighBeam Research.
- "Fulham's U-20 World Cup Links: Part One". Fulham F.C. Retrieved 21 November 2017.
- "Sutton leaves Lincoln". Sky Sports. 29 September 2010. Retrieved 29 September 2010.
- "Ian Pearce". ESPN. 7 May 1974. Retrieved 6 September 2010.[unreliable source?]
- "Ian Pearce: Overview". Premier League. Retrieved 17 April 2018.