Lee Clark (footballer)

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Lee Clark
Lee Clark.png
Clark playing for Fulham in 2005
Personal information
Full name Lee Robert Clark[1]
Date of birth (1972-10-27) 27 October 1972 (age 44)[1]
Place of birth Wallsend, England
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current team
Bury (manager)
Youth career
1987–1990 Newcastle United
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1990–1997 Newcastle United 195 (23)
1997–1999 Sunderland 74 (16)
1999–2005 Fulham 149 (20)
2005–2006 Newcastle United 22 (1)
Total 440 (60)
National team
1992–1993 England U21 11 (0)
Teams managed
2008–2012 Huddersfield Town
2012–2014 Birmingham City
2014–2015 Blackpool
2016–2017 Kilmarnock
2017– Bury
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Lee Robert Clark (born 27 October 1972) is an English professional football manager and former player. He is the manager of League One club Bury.

During his playing career he had spells with Newcastle United (twice - at the start and the end), Sunderland and Fulham. He also made 11 appearances for the England under-21 team during his international career.

After retiring he began a coaching career as reserve team manager and coach for Newcastle United. He then had manager spells at Huddersfield Town, Birmingham City, Blackpool and Kilmarnock before his move to his current club.

Club career[edit]

Newcastle United[edit]

Born in Wallsend, North Tyneside,[1] Clark started his career at the club he supported as a boy, Newcastle United coming up through the youth system at the club. In 1993, he was part of the Newcastle side promoted to the Premier League as champions and then helped them finish runners-up two seasons in a row. He made nearly 200 appearances scoring 23 goals for Newcastle in his first spell at the club.[citation needed]


Clark moved to Newcastle's local rivals, First Division club Sunderland, in 1997, and was part of the side promoted to the Premier League in 1999 as champions with a (then) professional league record of 105 points. A year earlier, he had been a key player in the side that reached the First Division play-off final, only to suffer a penalty shoot-out defeat to Charlton Athletic after a 4–4 draw at Wembley.

However, at the 1999 FA Cup Final he was spotted with the Newcastle fans wearing a T-shirt with the slogan "Sad Mackem Bastards". He was immediately dropped from the team, and never played for Sunderland again.[2]


Clark moved to Fulham in 1999. He collected another Division One title medal with in 2001, enabling him to experience Premier League football for the first time since the 1996–97 season. In 2004, he helped Fulham secure what was, at the time, their highest final position – ninth in the top flight. During that season he opened the scoring as Fulham beat Manchester United 3–1 at Old Trafford in October 2003.[3] Clark left Fulham in 2005 to return to former club Newcastle United, after making 149 league appearances and scoring 20 goals for the West London club.

Return to Newcastle[edit]

Clark was allowed to leave Fulham after his contract expired in the summer of 2005 despite being club captain during the 2004–05 season. At the time of his departure, he was Fulham's longest-serving player. He subsequently returned to Newcastle, coaching and playing on a month-by-month contract.

Clark scored one goal for Newcastle in the 2005–06 season, an equaliser in a 2–2 draw with Middlesbrough.[4] He played his final professional game on 7 May 2006, coming on as a substitute at home to Chelsea. In total he played 265 times for Newcastle, scoring 28 goals.[citation needed]

International career[edit]

Clark scored a hat-trick for England schoolboys at Wembley Stadium in 1988.[citation needed]

He represented England at international level playing for the England under-21s, making 11 appearances between 1992 and 1993 during his time playing for Newcastle.[citation needed]

In 1997, he was a member of England's squad for Le Tournoi de France but did not play.[5]

Coaching career[edit]

Newcastle United[edit]

On 1 June 2006, the newly appointed Newcastle manager Glenn Roeder installed Clark as a first team coach and reserve team manager following Tommy Craig's departure while Clark was still playing for Newcastle.[citation needed] He remained as first team coach and as reserve team manager after retiring in 2007 until Roeder parted company with the club and Clark followed shortly afterwards in November.[citation needed]

Norwich City[edit]

In November 2007, Clark left his post at Newcastle to become assistant manager to Roeder at Championship club Norwich City.[6]

Managerial career[edit]

Huddersfield Town[edit]

After League One club Huddersfield Town had dismissed manager Stan Ternent on 4 November 2008, The Terriers were reported to be interested in then Norwich assistant manager Clark. On 12 December 2008, Clark was officially unveiled as the new manager of Huddersfield, signing a three-and-a-half year contract. Clark replaced Gerry Murphy, who had been caretaker manager for the League One side following the departure of Ternent. The first move made by Clark was to appoint Terry McDermott as his assistant as well as bringing in Derek Fazackerley in as first team coach and Steve Black as performance coach, all of whom had previously worked with Newcastle United.[7] Clark officially took over on 15 December; his first game in charge of the club was a 2–0 win over Hereford United on 20 December.

In his first season at the club he helped them to a ninth-placed finish in League One. They also only lost two home league games under Clark in the 2008–09 season. In his second season in charge, Clark helped Huddersfield to secure a play-off spot and became the first manager to win three Manager of the Month awards in a single season since Roberto Martínez in 2007–08.[8] Huddersfield were defeated by Millwall in the 2009–10 play-off semi-final.[citation needed]

In the 2010–11 season, Clark guided Huddersfield to a third-placed finish in the league, earning them a place in the play-offs after a club-record 25-game unbeaten run in the league. They reached the final after beating Bournemouth 4–2 on penalties, but lost 3–0 to Peterborough United in the Old Trafford final. In July 2011, he agreed a new rolling contract with the club.[9]

Clark continued breaking records at the beginning of the 2011–12 season, extending the unbeaten run in domestic regular-season league games to a Football League record 43 games.[10]

Clark was dismissed as manager of Huddersfield on 15 February 2012 following a 1–0 home defeat to Sheffield United.[11]

Birmingham City[edit]

On 26 June 2012, Clark was confirmed as manager of Birmingham City, with Terry McDermott as his Assistant Manager and Derek Fazackerley and Steve Watson as his First Team Coaches.[12] John Vaughan was brought in as his Goalkeeping Coach and Malcolm Crosby was appointed Chief Scout.[13] Clark signed Peter Lovenkrands, David Lucas, Hayden Mullins and Darren Ambrose in the summer of 2012, as well as Ravel Morrison, Ben Gordon, James Hurst, Leroy Lita, Paul Caddis, Paul Robinson, Rob Hall, Shane Ferguson and Wes Thomas later on throughout the 2012–13 season.

Clark endured a difficult start to his managerial reign, with a draw and two losses in a row for his first three games in the Championship. His first win came against Peterborough but Birmingham suffered a 5–0 home defeat against Barnsley in September.[14] During the January 2013 transfer window, Clark sold Jake Jervis, David Lucas and Jack Butland, who returned on loan for the remainder of the season. Clark struggled to get Birmingham out of the bottom half of the league until back to back wins against Derby County and Middlesbrough took them up to 12th place in March. Despite receiving criticism from fans for alleged poor management skills regarding public fallouts with Nikola Zigic,[15] Clark has been praised for introducing academy players into the first team squad, players including Jack Butland, Will Packwood, Mitch Hancox, Callum Reilly, Koby Arthur and Reece Hales.[16] Clark continued the start of 2013 with his team producing good form, including a 4–0 away win at Crystal Palace and back to back 1–0 wins against Bristol City and Leeds.[14] After finishing the season in 12th place, 7 points off the play-offs, Clark made his first signings for the 2013–14 Championship season with Darren Randolph, Andrew Shinnie and Lee Novak all signing on free transfers, whilst Olly Lee's loan was made permanent.[17][18] The 2013–14 season started poorly again for Clark, with Birmingham winning just one game in the league against Yeovil Town as the Blues made their worst start to a league season for 25 years.[19]

Despite poor results in the league (including a disappointing 18 home match run without a league win) and the removal from the coaching staff of Clark's right hand men Derek Fazackerley and Terry McDermott,[20] Clark managed to keep Birmingham City in the Championship with an injury time equaliser from Paul Caddis in the final game of the 2013–14 season against Bolton, the 2–2 result being enough to keep the team up on goal difference.[21]

On 20 October 2014, with Birmingham 21st in the table and having won at home in the league only once in more than a year, Clark and assistant Steve Watson were dismissed.[22] At the time of his dismissal, Clark had only won 33 of his 116 games – the lowest win ratio for a quarter of a century from a Birmingham manager – and left the club just one point from the relegation zone.[23][24]


On 30 October 2014, Clark was appointed manager of Blackpool on a one-year rolling deal.[25] Having been bottom of the Championship since October 2014 and having won only four games all season, Blackpool were relegated to League One on 6 April 2015 with six games left to play.[26]

On 9 May 2015, Clark resigned as manager of Blackpool following their relegation from the Championship.[27] Blackpool won only three games from 33 played under Clark's tenure.[28]


Clark was appointed manager of Scottish Premiership club Kilmarnock on 15 February 2016.[29] He went on to help Kilmarnock keep their 23-year long Scottish Premiership status by defeating Falkirk 4–1 in the play off final with the latter of the two legs being a 4–0 thrashing with goals from Greg Kiltie (2), Miles Addison and Kris Boyd. He left the club in February 2017, exactly a year after joining.


Clark was appointed manager of League One club Bury on 15 February 2017.[30]

Career statistics[edit]


Club performance League Cup League Cup Continental Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
England League FA Cup League Cup Europe Total
1991–92 Newcastle United Second Division 29 5 - - - 29 5
1992–93 First Division 46 9 - - - 46 9
1993–94 Premier League 29 2 - - - 29 2
1994–95 19 1 - - - 19 1
1995–96 28 2 2 0 3 0 - 33 2
1996–97 24 2 3 1 1 0 5 0 33 3
1997–98 Sunderland First Division 49 13 2 0 1 0 - 52 13
1998–99 27 3 2 0 4 0 - 33 3
1999–00 Fulham First Division 42 8 4 0 6 1 - 52 9
2000–01 45 7 1 0 4 0 - 50 7
2001–02 Premier League 9 0 - 3 0 - 12 0
2002–03 11 2 - 2 1 2 0 15 3
2003–04 25 2 2 0 - - 27 2
2004–05 17 1 5 0 - - 22 1
2005–06 Newcastle United Premier League 22 1 2 0 1 0 - 25 1
Total England 422 58 23 1 25 2 7 0 477 61
Career total 422 58 23 1 25 2 7 0 477 61

Managerial statistics[edit]

As of match played 19 September 2017
Managerial record by team and tenure
Team From To Record Ref
P W D L Win %
Huddersfield Town 15 December 2008 15 February 2012 177 86 51 40 048.6 [28][32][33]
Birmingham City 26 June 2012 20 October 2014 116 33 35 48 028.4 [28]
Blackpool 30 October 2014 9 May 2015 33 3 11 19 009.1 [27][28]
Kilmarnock 15 February 2016 15 February 2017 44 10 14 20 022.7 [28]
Bury 15 February 2017 Present 26 6 6 14 023.1 [28]
Total 394 138 117 139 035.0


As player[edit]

Newcastle United






  1. ^ a b c "Lee Clark". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 3 April 2017. 
  2. ^ Black and white and red When Saturday Comes, February 2002
  3. ^ "Fulham stun Man Utd". BBC Sport. 25 October 2003. Retrieved 14 August 2009. 
  4. ^ "Newcastle 2-2 Middlesbrough". BBC Sport. 2 January 2006. Retrieved 22 August 2009. 
  5. ^ "Memory Lane". www.fulhamfc.com. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  6. ^ Clark leaves Magpies for Norwich BBC Sport, 2 November 2007
  7. ^ "Clark named new Huddersfield boss". BBC Sport. 11 December 2008. Retrieved 11 December 2008. 
  8. ^ "Manager of the Month for January 2008". League Managers Association. June 2010. Retrieved 30 July 2011. 
  9. ^ "Lee Clark signs new Town contract". htafc.com. 29 July 2011. Retrieved 29 July 2011. 
  10. ^ "Npower commemorate unbeaten run". Huddersfield Town F.C. 22 November 2011. Retrieved 26 June 2012. 
  11. ^ "Huddersfield Town sack manager Lee Clark". BBC Sport. 15 February 2012. Retrieved 15 February 2012. 
  12. ^ "Clark confirmed as Blues boss". Birmingham City F.C. 26 June 2012. Archived from the original on 29 June 2012. Retrieved 26 June 2012. 
  13. ^ "Birmingham City FC Staff Profiles". Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  14. ^ a b "Birmingham City FC Fixture List". Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  15. ^ "BBC Sport - Birmingham: Nikola Zigic attitude disgusts boss Lee Clark". BBC Sport. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  16. ^ "BBC Sport - Birmingham City boss Lee Clark puts faith in youngsters". BBC Sport. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  17. ^ "BBC Sport - Lee Novak: Birmingham sign Huddersfield Town striker". BBC Sport. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  18. ^ Colin Tattum. "Birmingham City sign Olly Lee on a free transfer from Barnet - Birmingham Mail". birminghammail. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  19. ^ "QPR 1-0 Birmingham City - Championship match report - Football - The Observer". the Guardian. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  20. ^ "Terry McDermott and Derek Fazackerley leave Birmingham by mutual consent - Football - theguardian.com". the Guardian. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  21. ^ "BBC Sport - Bolton Wanderers 2-2 Birmingham City". BBC Sport. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  22. ^ "Lee Clark: Birmingham City sack manager and his assistant". BBC Sport. 20 October 2014. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  23. ^ Evans, Gregg (20 October 2014). "Lee Clark had the lowest Birmingham City win ratio for a quarter of a century". 
  24. ^ "Lee Clark sacked by Birmingham City after poor start to Championship season". Daily Mail. 20 October 2014. Retrieved 29 October 2014. 
  25. ^ "Lee Clark: Blackpool appoint ex-Birmingham City manager". BBC Sport. 30 October 2014. Retrieved 30 October 2014. 
  26. ^ "Blackpool relegated from Championship to League One". BBC Sport. Retrieved 7 April 2015. 
  27. ^ a b "Lee Clark: Blackpool manager resigns after relegation". BBC Sport. 9 May 2015. Retrieved 3 April 2017. 
  28. ^ a b c d e f "Managers: Lee Clark". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 31 May 2017. 
  29. ^ "Lee Clark: Kilmarnock appoint former Blackpool manager". BBC Sport. 15 February 2016. Retrieved 15 February 2016. 
  30. ^ "Lee Clark: Bury agree deal for Kilmarnock boss to join". BBC Sport. 15 February 2017. Retrieved 3 April 2017. 
  31. ^ [1] Newcastle United FC
  32. ^ "Clark 'really pleased' with squad". BBC Sport. 16 December 2008. Retrieved 3 April 2017. 
  33. ^ "Huddersfield: Results/matches: 2008/09". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 3 April 2017. 

External links[edit]