||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (March 2015)|
Beckford playing for Leicester City in 2012
|Full name||Jermaine Paul Alexander Beckford|
|Date of birth||9 December 1983|
|Place of birth||Ealing, London, England|
|Height||1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)|
|Preston North End|
|2003–2004||→ Uxbridge (loan)||8||(2)|
|2006||→ Carlisle United (loan)||4||(1)|
|2007||→ Scunthorpe United (loan)||18||(8)|
|2012–2013||→ Huddersfield Town (loan)||21||(8)|
|2014–2015||→ Preston North End (loan)||23||(12)|
|2015–||Preston North End||0||(0)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 00:09, 1 July 2015 (UTC).
Jermaine Paul Alexander Beckford (born 9 December 1983) is a Jamaican international footballer who plays as a striker for Preston North End. He began his career as a trainee at Chelsea, and has since played for Wealdstone, Uxbridge, Leeds United, Carlisle United, Scunthorpe United, Everton, Leicester City, Huddersfield Town, Bolton Wanderers and Preston North End.
- 1 Club career
- 2 International career
- 3 Career statistics
- 4 Honours
- 5 Personal life
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Beckford originally began his career in the Chelsea youth team, coming through the ranks at the same time as Carlton Cole. Rejected by Chelsea, he was signed up by Isthmian Premier League side Wealdstone and played part-time whilst also working as a windscreen fitter for the RAC. His very impressive goal scoring record attracted a lot of attention from Football League sides and reportedly more than 30 clubs showed an interest in the prolific striker, with many sending scouts to watch him play for Wealdstone. He had a trial with Championship side Crystal Palace, before signing for Leeds United in March 2006 for an undisclosed fee, having scored 35 goals in 40 games for Wealdstone that season.
He first featured the following week at Elland Road, when he came on as a substitute in the home draw against Crystal Palace on 21 March. He scored his first goal for the club in his second reserve match, helping the side beat Birmingham City reserves 2–1. He now plays hide and go seek in Leeds's promotion ambition. In the 2005–06 season Leeds were chasing promotion, so his appearances were limited and he only played on four more occasions that season. He joined Carlisle United on a month's loan on 5 October. It was an eventful first match for Beckford, as he was booked and also found himself on the score sheet inside the first half of the game against Millwall. After completing his loan spell, he returned to Leeds, where he was rewarded with a place in the starting line-up against Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. However, he was soon loaned out again, this time to League One promotion challengers Scunthorpe United until the end of the season. He played in every single game after his arrival, scoring eight goals, and Scunthorpe were ultimately promoted with three games to spare, before going on to finish as champions.
Due to the major role he played in guiding them to promotion, he was linked with a permanent move to Glanford Park in the close season, but Leeds manager Dennis Wise rejected the approach and kept him at the club to add to Leeds' attack. Beckford scored his first goal for the senior side in a pre-season fixture against League Two side Darlington on 31 July. He followed this up with another goal against Premier League outfit Wigan Athletic four days later.
This form continued into the 2007–08 season and Beckford netted his first league goal for the club in a 4–1 victory against Southend United on 18 August. His goalscoring exploits continued when he bagged a late winner at the City Ground as Leeds beat Nottingham Forest 2–1 to continue their 100% winning record in the league, following their 15-point deduction. He gambled at the back post to tap in the winner after some great work from Sébastien Carole. Beckford was also instrumental in Leeds' opener, laying the ball into the path of fellow striker Tresor Kandol to net stylishly. In Leeds' fifth successive league win, he scored the second goal in a 2–0 victory over Hartlepool United with a pacey run and an exquisite chip into the net. In the next game, he scored a further two goals against Bristol Rovers, the second with an overhead kick.
On 11 October, Beckford signed a new three-year deal with Leeds, keeping him at the club until the end of the 2009–10 season. After continuing to impress over the course of the month, he was awarded Coca-Cola League One Fans' Player of the Month. In addition to his performances, this media coverage naturally led to growing speculation surrounding suggested interest in the striker in the January transfer window, with Premier League side Derby County supposedly the club looking for his signature. However, a Leeds United spokesman confirmed that "Jermaine Beckford is not for sale" on 8 January 2008. Dennis Wise also moved to quash the rumours, stating four days later, among other things, that "Derby haven't put in any enquiries". On 14 January, Leeds' match against Crewe Alexandra was shown live on Sky Sports and they ultimately won the tie 1–0, once again Beckford scoring the decisive goal. Derby manager Paul Jewell was spotted in the crowd, leading to even more speculation. This time both Wise and Leeds chairman Ken Bates reinforced the fact that they had no intention of letting Beckford leave, with Wise verifying "I've no intentions of selling the kid". Jewell himself stated "I'm very interested in Jermaine" after the game, thereby putting an end to the uncertainty.
In his post-match interview, Beckford won the hearts of Leeds fans by declaring that he had no intentions of leaving the club. When posed the question "Where do you see your own future?", he replied "What shirt am I wearing, bruv? You bein' serious?". The phrase has since been well publicised and T-shirts bearing the quotation can be purchased in the official club store.
On 2 March 2008, Beckford won two awards at the third annual Football League Awards at Grosvenor House Hotel in London. He received the award for League One Player of the Year and the Football League Goal of the Year for his strike against Rotherham United during his loan spell with Scunthorpe United.
Beckford started the 2008–09 season in fine form, bagging ten goals in eight starts. The first of these goals was the winner against Scunthorpe United, a club he had previously been on loan to. Two days later, Jermaine scored his first professional hat-trick against League Two side Chester City in the first round of the League Cup. He scored all three goals in the first half, the third of which was an extravagant chip from long range. The performance led Leeds manager Gary McAllister to once again state that Beckford was not for sale. After failing to hit the net against both Yeovil Town and Oldham Athletic, he hit the second goal in a 4–0 win over Championship side Crystal Palace in the second round of the League Cup. Beckford was played out wide in a tactical change which worked well for Gary McAllister's side. He then scored both goals in a 2–2 draw with Bristol Rovers on the 30 August 2008, and another against Crewe Alexandra the following week. The week after, Beckford scored twice for Leeds United in a 3–1 victory, away at Swindon Town. He followed that the following Saturday with his eleventh of the season - the second goal in Leeds 2–0 win away at his former club Carlisle. Beckford went on something of a mini-drought over the next four games in which he started two (against Hereford United and Peterborough United) and came off the bench in the other two (Hartlepool United and Rotherham United); but got back to scoring ways by bagging a brace in Leeds 3–1 home win over Brighton & Hove Albion. He missed a penalty in Leeds 2–1 victory over Leyton Orient when he slipped in his run up causing him to sky his shot. He recorded his second career hat-trick in the 5–2 victory over Northampton Town in an FA Cup second round replay in November 2008, and followed this up with a brace in a 4–1 home win against Hartlepool United.
After scoring against Northampton again (this time in a 2–1 league reverse) Beckford was sidelined with an injury for a few weeks. The striker returned to action as a substitute at home to Peterborough, he had an immediate impact scoring another brace as Leeds won 3–1. Beckford scored another brace at home to Millwall in a 2–0 but was strangely suspended for the following three games after being elbowed by Millwall goalkeeper David Forde. He returned to action in the 3–2 win over his former club Scunthorpe United and bagged yet another brace. On March 11 Beckford bagged his third hat-trick of the season, and first ever league hat-trick, in the 4–0 win over Yeovil Town. This brought Beckford's seasonal tally to 28, joining him with Leicester City's Matty Fryatt as Britain's leading goalscorer. The following Saturday Beckford's 29th goal of the season gave Leeds a 1–0 win over Swindon Town, but Beckford was sent-off in stoppage time after receiving a second yellow card for dissent. He did however go on to pass the 30 mark, when he scored two goals in his next appearance to give Leeds a 2–0 victory over MK Dons. The two goals against Milton Keynes Dons also saw Beckford score his 50th and 51st goal for Leeds United (in all competitions).
With 12 months remaining on his current contract, Leeds United clarified their intentions of offering Beckford a new contract. However, on 26 May 2009, Leeds announced Beckford had rejected the contract offer and transfer listed him immediately. After weeks of speculation, Leeds announced on 9 July 2009, that two bids by unnamed clubs for Beckford had been rejected by the club. On 15 July 2009, BBC Radio Leeds claimed that three clubs were now in the chase to try and sign Beckford. Leeds United announced on 17 July 2009, that Beckford had been removed from the transfer list.
Beckford started the 2009–10 season by scoring two goals during the 2–1 home victory over Exeter City. Beckford continued his good start to the season with further goals against Walsall, Tranmere Rovers and Colchester United. He scored his sixth goal of the season against Gillingham by scoring a rebound after teammate Michael Doyle's shot had rebounded off the crossbar.
Beckford played in the League Cup clash against Liverpool and looked to have scored a vital goal for Leeds but the goal was controversially ruled offside. Leeds went on to lose the match 1–0, David N'Gog scoring for Liverpool. Beckford scored his seventh goal of the season against Carlisle United after he missed a penalty in the game he managed to score the rebound, the penalty was incidentally the third penalty in a row he has missed for Leeds. Beckford scored his eighth of the season in dramatic fashion, with an injury time winner against Norwich after a terrible mistake by Norwich goalkeeper Fraser Forster.
Beckford's ninth and 10th goals of the season came in the game against Bristol Rovers. He scored again in the 4–0 win over Yeovil Town on 31 October 2009, taking him to 11 goals in 14 matches. His 12th goal of the season came in the Football League Trophy game against Grimsby, with Beckford scoring the third goal in Leeds 3–1 victory, the goal was a fine right footed finish past Grimsby keeper Nick Colgan. Beckford's 13th goal of the season came against Brighton & Hove Albion when he slotted the ball under Brighton keeper Graeme Smith.
His fourteenth goal of the season came in the FA Cup draw against Kettering Town where Beckford scored a late equaliser for Leeds. He was rested for the following game against Oldham Athletic and scored his fifteenth of the season during extra time in the 5–1 win against Kettering Town in the replay. In the match against Southampton on 19 December Beckford was substituted for Max Gradel after putting in a lacklustre display and he showed his frustration at Simon Grayson's decision by refusing his handshake and heading straight down the tunnel, instead of taking his place on the bench. This led to a chorus of boos from the Leeds fans, who were disappointed with his attitude. In a statement on the club's official website, manager Simon Grayson said Beckford apologised for his behaviour in training the following Monday.
Beckford's first game since the incident was against Hartlepool United on boxing day where he remained in the starting lineup and scored his sixteenth and seventeenth goals of the season. The first was a backheel following Neil Kilkenny's blocked shot and his second goal was a fine chip over Hartlepool keeper Scott Flinders, bringing his goal tally against Hartlepool to seven in five games. Beckford scored his 18th goal of the season after an error from Stockport County goalkeeper Owain Fon Williams and goal number nineteen came in the same game, sealing a 4–2 win in injury time.
On 29 December 2009, Newcastle United manager Chris Hughton stated his interest in Beckford. Beckford handed in a transfer request on 30 December, which was accepted by Leeds, but Simon Grayson has said he will only go for the right price and it will be his decision not the chairman's.
On 3 January 2010, Beckford gave Leeds United an early 1–0 lead in the FA Cup clash against old rivals Manchester United. The goal was his twentieth of the season and Leeds held onto their lead, meaning Manchester United were knocked out of a cup competition at the third round stage for the first time under Sir Alex Ferguson.
17 January 2010, Leeds United released a statement on their official website stating that Jermaine Beckford would be staying at Leeds until the end of the 2009-10 season ruling out any move for him in the transfer window. Beckford also released a statement on the club website stating he had withdrawn his transfer request and wanted to stay at Leeds to help get them promoted to the Coca Cola Championship.
On 23 January 2010, Beckford scored two goals in an FA Cup tie at White Hart Lane against Tottenham Hotspur to earn Leeds United a replay. The first goal was a poachers effort inside the 6 yard box with Beckford scoring after a scramble inside the 6 yard box, the goal was his 21st goal of the season. His second goal of the game was from the penalty spot deep into injury time after Michael Dawson brought down Beckford in the area, Beckford stepped up and kept his nerve as he smashed the penalty past Spurs keeper Heurelho Gomes to take his tally to 22 goals for the season and earn Leeds a replay at Elland Road. His 23rd goal of the season came against Colchester United from the penalty spot, his 24th goal of the season came in the same game with Beckford scoring after a goal mouth scramble.
Beckford was substituted at half time and replaced by Robert Snodgrass as a precaution against Hartlepool United after suffering a hamstring injury during the game. The injury ruled Beckford out of Leeds' JPT Northern Area final second leg against Carlisle United. Beckford also missed Leeds' game against Leyton Orient with the injury. Beckford returned from injury against Walsall. After a goal drought Beckford scored a goal (his 25th of the season) against Brentford in the 1-1 draw.
His 26th and 27th goals of the season came in the same game against Tranmere Rovers when Beckford scored a brace, the first of the two goals came from the penalty spot, and Beckford's second came after a wonderful lob over Tranmere goalkeeper Luke Daniels. During the game against Southend United Beckford was booed by the Elland Road faithful after failing to challenge for the ball, Beckford responded to the fans with an angry gesture. Beckford was later substituted to the sound of ironic cheers when he was replaced by Luciano Becchio. Beckford was dropped for the following game against Carlisle United due to his poor performances and lack of goals. Beckford got back to scoring ways when he scored a penalty against Gillingham after coming on as a second-half substitute. Beckford scored a brace coming off the bench against MK Dons, taking his tally to 30 goals for the season.
After several games on the bench. Beckford returned to Leeds' starting lineup and was also named captain in Leeds' crucial must win game against Bristol Rovers. During this match he scored the winning goal for Leeds after they had gone one goal down and been reduced to ten men as Max Gradel was sent off. This victory meant that Leeds stayed in 2nd place and so gained automatic promotion to the Football League Championship.
Leeds finished the league season in second place and gained automatic promotion to the Football League Championship, with Beckford scoring the promotion clinching goal against Bristol Rovers on the final day of the season. Beckford scored 31 goals in all competitions, 25 in the league. He won Leeds United's goal of the season at Leeds' annual Player of the Season awards for his goal against Manchester United at Old Trafford. Following the end of the season, in May 2010, Leeds cancelled Beckford's contract a month early to enable him to find a new club.
In May 2010, Beckford signed for Everton on a four-year contract on a free transfer and was given squad number 16. After playing and scoring in pre-season friendlies Beckford made his Everton debut as a second-half substitute against Blackburn Rovers and his full debut a week later at home to Wolverhampton Wanderers. He scored his first goal for the club, a penalty, against Huddersfield Town in the Football League Cup in August 2010 and an injury-time equaliser at home against his future employers Bolton Wanderers in November 2010 was Beckford's first league goal for the Toffees. He also scored at Anfield against Liverpool in the Merseyside derby. In the last game of the season he scored a solo goal in a 1-0 win against Chelsea at Goodison Park. At the end of his debut season for Everton he had scored 8 goals in the league and 10 goals in all competitions.
On 31 August 2011, Everton accepted a £2.5 million bid for Beckford from Championship side Leicester City. Beckford arrived at the King Power Stadium just 40 minutes before the transfer window closed to sign a four-year contract, making him Leicester City's 12th signing of the summer. He scored his first goal for the club in a 2–0 win over Watford on 19 October 2011. On 17 January, Beckford scored his first hat-trick for Leicester, in a 4–0 FA Cup win over rivals Nottingham Forest. He scored a brace against Swindon Town in the FA Cup, and scored two more braces in March 2012, in a 3–1 win against Birmingham City, and a 3–3 draw against Blackpool.
Huddersfield Town (loan)
On 28 September 2012, it was announced that Jermaine Beckford had joined Huddersfield Town on a 93-day emergency loan until 29 December, following a week training with the under 21 squad at his parent club Leicester City and a failed loan bid from the same club on 31 August. He made his debut the following day in the 3–2 loss to Watford at the John Smith's Stadium. He scored his first goal for the club in the 1–0 win over Birmingham City at St. Andrew's on 6 October 2012.
On 17 July 2013, he moved to Bolton Wanderers for an undisclosed fee, signing a two-year contract. He made his debut for Bolton in their 1–1 draw with Lancashire rivals Burnley on 3 August 2013, playing eighty minutes before being replaced by Craig Davies. His first goal came in the League Cup second round, as he scored against Tranmere Rovers. He also scored one of the penalties as the match went to penalties but ultimately Bolton ended up losing the shoot out 4–2. The game itself finished 1–1.
He scored his first league goal for Bolton in their 2–1 win away at Birmingham City which coincided with the club's first league win of the new season. Whilst not getting off to the best start, goals started to come with him scoring 5 in 6 in matches against Sheffield Wednesday, Bournemouth, Millwall and Watford and the aforementioned Birmingham. Striker Joe Mason joined Bolton on the 11th November 2013, on a short term loan deal. This saw Beckford dropped to the bench for a while, until returning to the starting line up and scoring against his former club Leicester City on the 30th December 2013. Bolton went on to lose the game 5–3.
Preston North End (loan)
He rediscovered his form, and in total he scored 18 goals for Preston in 31 appearances in all competitions, including a hat-trick in the play-off final at Wembley against Swindon Town on 24 May 2015 to win the club promotion to the Championship.
Preston North End
Beckford was approached by Grenada's coach Tommy Taylor with a view to playing for the Grenada national football team in May 2009. In May 2011, former Jamaican international Romel Wallen stated that Beckford was close to finalising an agreement to play for Jamaica.
In November 2012, the Jamaican Football Federation reported that Beckford had shown interest playing for the Reggae Boyz and was in the pool of players eligible to be called up for the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifiers.
He received a call-up in March 2013 for their qualifiers against Panama and Costa Rica and made his début in the 1–1 draw against Panama at Independence Park, Kingston on 22 March 2013. He then got his second cap four days later in the 2–0 defeat against Costa Rica at Estadio Nacional de Costa Rica, San José.
- As of match played 24 May 2015.
|Club||Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Other||Total|
|Carlisle United (loan)||2006–07||League One||4||1||—||—||1[c]||0||5||1|
|Scunthorpe United (loan)||2006–07||League One||18||8||—||—||—||18||8|
|Huddersfield Town (loan)||2012–13||Championship||21||8||1||1||—||—||22||9|
|Preston North End (loan)||2014–15||League One||23||12||2||0||—||6[d]||6||31||18|
- As of match played 10 September 2013.
- Football League One
- Runners up: 2009–10
Preston North End
- Football League One
- Play-Off Winner 2014-15
- Football League Awards
- PFA Awards
- Leeds United Player of the Year Awards
- FA Cup
- FA Cup Top Scorer 2011–12
Beckford's younger brother, Travis Beckford, won the first series of Wayne Rooney's Street Striker on Sky TV. Due to having a Jamaican father and Grenadian family on his mother's side Beckford is eligible to play for Jamaica, Grenada and England.
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