Leon Britton

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Leon Britton
Leon Britton.jpg
Britton playing for Swansea City in 2010
Personal information
Full name Leon James Britton[1]
Date of birth (1982-09-16) 16 September 1982 (age 35)[1]
Place of birth Merton, England
Height 5 ft 4 in (1.63 m)[2]
Playing position Midfielder
Youth career
1991–1998 Arsenal
1998–1999 West Ham United
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1999–2003 West Ham United 0 (0)
2002–2003Swansea City (loan) 25 (0)
2003–2010 Swansea City 270 (10)
2010–2011 Sheffield United 24 (0)
2011–2018 Swansea City 166 (1)
Total 484 (11)
National team
1998–1999 England U16 2 (0)
Teams managed
2017 Swansea City (caretaker)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Leon James Britton (born 16 September 1982) is a retired English professional footballer and coach, who played as a midfielder. He spent most of his career with Swansea City. Having joined Swansea on a permanent transfer in 2003, Britton has gone on to make over 500 league appearances for the club.[3] He joined Sheffield United in the summer of 2010, but transferred back to Swansea in January 2011. Britton instantly became a central figure in Swansea's successful promotion campaign. He remains one of a handful of players to have represented any club in all four professional divisions of the English footballing pyramid, along with Brett Ormerod, and former Swansea teammates Alan Tate and Garry Monk.

Playing career[edit]

Youth career[edit]

A member of the England Development School at Lilleshall where he was a year behind Joe Cole, Britton began his career as an Arsenal trainee at the age of nine. When he signed for West Ham United for £400,000 in 1998, he attracted the highest transfer fee ever paid for a 16-year-old at that time.[4] Unable to break into the first team at West Ham, Britton joined Swansea City on loan in December 2002, helping the club to avoid relegation from the Football League. He was named PFA Fans' Player of the Year for the Third Division in the 2002–03 season.[5] Swansea manager Brian Flynn was impressed enough to sign him permanently after he was released by West Ham.

Swansea[edit]

With Swansea, Britton went on to win the club's Player of the Year award in both the 2002–03 and 2005–06 seasons.[6][7]

Including his appearances whilst on loan with the club, to the end of the 2005–06 season, Britton had played 137 times for Swansea City in all competitions (with a further 18 appearances as a substitute) and had scored nine goals.[8]

On 9 February 2008, Britton played his 200th match for Swansea City. In January 2010, Swansea rejected an £750,000 offer for Britton from Wigan Athletic[9] but at the end of that season Britton refused the offer of a new contract and became a free agent.[10]

Sheffield United[edit]

Despite interest from the Premier League, Britton signed for Sheffield United in June 2010.[10] He was handed a regular role in the centre of the Blades midfield but failed to really show the form he had displayed at Swansea. A difficult period for the club, Britton played under four managers within the space of five months and eventually asked to return to his former employer, stating that his previous transfer had been a "mistake" and that he "should never have left Swansea".[11] The Blades admitted that he had never settled in South Yorkshire and agreed to let him return to Wales after only 26 appearances for the club.[12]

Return to Swansea[edit]

Britton re-signed for Swansea City for what the Blades described as an "undisclosed fee" during the January transfer window despite the Swans insisting no fee was involved.[13] The fee was clause based and included up to £400,000 depending on appearances and Swansea's promotion to the Premier League.[14]

Britton's second Swansea City debut came in a draw with Barnsley on 20 January 2011.[11] He scored his first goal of the season (his first goal in three and a half years) against his former employers Sheffield United in the final match of the regular season.[15]

The 2010–11 season ended with Swansea City being promoted to the Premier League for the first time in their history following a 4–2 victory over Reading in the Championship Play-off Final at Wembley Stadium. Britton started the match at Wembley and completed 77 minutes before being substituted by Mark Gower.[16]

Following Swansea's promotion, Britton made his Premier League debut in a 4–0 loss against Manchester City on 15 August 2011 where he played in the central midfield. Britton stated he would like to finish his career with the club and admits he cannot imagine playing elsewhere.[17]

On 30 March 2012, Britton signed a contract extension at Swansea City, contracting him until the end of the 2015 campaign.[18]

On 5 February 2013, Britton signed a one-year contract extension on improved terms with Swansea City, keeping at the club until June 2016.[19]

Later that month, Britton won the first major trophy of his career as Swansea beat Bradford City 5–0 in the 2013 League Cup Final at Wembley Stadium.[20]

On 11 May 2018, it was announced that Britton will retire from professional football after the end of the 2017–18 season. He has opted to become a club ambassador when Swansea City are preparing for life back in the Championship.[21]

Coaching career[edit]

Swansea City[edit]

In November 2017, Swansea manager Paul Clement appointed Britton as an assistant coach, after the departure of Claude Makélélé from the coaching staff. Britton remained available for selection as a player, but relinquished his captaincy following his coaching appointment.[22]

Caretaker spell[edit]

Britton was named caretaker manager at Swansea on 21 December 2017, after the dismissal of Clement the previous day.[23] In his first game in charge, on 23 December, Swansea drew 1–1 at home to Crystal Palace, a result which left them at the bottom of the league.[24] Britton remained in charge for Swansea's Boxing Day match against Liverpool at Anfield, where the Swans were comprehensively beaten 5–0.[25] This was his last match as caretaker manager as the Swans appointed former Sheffield Wednesday coach Carlos Carvalhal as their new manager.[26] Britton then chose to relinquish his coaching duties to concentrate on playing.[27]

Personal life[edit]

Britton was born in Merton, Greater London and played a young Ryan Giggs in a road safety advertisement in the 1990s. Britton also appeared in a Walkers Crisps advert with former England international Gary Lineker.[28]

Career statistics[edit]

Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Europe Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Swansea City (loan) 2002–03[29] League Two 25 0 25 0
Swansea City 2003–04[30] League Two 42 3 5 0 1 0 0 0 48 3
2004–05[31] 30 1 3 0 1 0 1[a] 0 35 1
2005–06[32] League One 38 4 1 0 1 0 7[b] 1 47 5
2006–07[33] 41 2 4 3 1 0 1[a] 0 47 5
2007–08[34] 40 0 5 1 2 0 1[a] 0 48 1
2008–09[35] Championship 43 0 4 0 1 0 48 0
2009–10[36] 36 0 0 0 2 0 38 0
Total 295 10 22 4 9 0 10 1 336 15
Sheffield United 2010–11[15] Championship 24 0 1 0 1 0 26 0
Swansea City 2010–11[15] Championship 17 1 3[c] 1 20 2
2011–12[37] Premier League 36 0 1 0 37 0
2012–13[38] 33 0 2 0 6 0 41 0
2013–14[39] 25 0 2 0 1 0 6[d] 0 34 0
2014–15[40] 9 0 0 0 0 0 9 0
2015–16[41] 25 0 0 0 2 0 27 0
2016–17[42] 8 0 0 0 2 0 10 0
2017–18[43] 5 0 1 0 0 0 6 0
Swansea City total 453 12 28 4 20 0 6 0 13 1 520 17
Career total 477 12 29 4 21 0 6 0 13 1 546 17
  1. ^ a b c Appearance in Football League Trophy.
  2. ^ Four appearances and one goal in Football League Trophy, three appearances in Football League play-offs.
  3. ^ Appearances in Football League play-offs.
  4. ^ Appearances in UEFA Europa League.

Managerial statistics[edit]

As of 28 December 2017
Managerial record by team and tenure
Team From To Record Ref
P W D L Win %
Swansea City (caretaker) 21 December 2017 28 December 2017 2 0 1 1 000.0 [44][45]
Total 2 0 1 1 000.0

Honours[edit]

Club[edit]

Swansea City

Individual[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2009). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2009–10. Mainstream Publishing. ISBN 978-1-84596-474-0. 
  2. ^ "Leon Britton". Swansea City A.F.C. Retrieved 16 December 2017. 
  3. ^ "Trust Tribute to Leon Britton". Swans Trust.co.UK. 
  4. ^ "Leon Britton signs three-year Swansea City deal". BBC Sport. 31 March 2012. Retrieved 29 March 2014. 
  5. ^ a b "Welsh duo fans' favourites". Wales Online.co.uk. 
  6. ^ a b "Swansea City star Leon Britton salutes Wolves boss Kenny Jackett | Swansea City AFC". www.swanseacity.com. Retrieved 2017-12-22. 
  7. ^ a b "Swans will always have the best of Britton". The PFA.com. 
  8. ^ Leon Britton at Soccerbase
  9. ^ "Swansea reject bids for star trio". BBC. 2 February 2010. Retrieved 13 June 2010. 
  10. ^ a b "Leon prefers Sheffield United to top flight". The Sheffield Star. 12 June 2010. Retrieved 13 June 2010. 
  11. ^ a b "Leon Britton completes shock Swansea City return". BBC. 20 January 2011. Retrieved 22 January 2011. 
  12. ^ "Britton heads back to Swansea". Sheffield United F.C. 20 January 2011. Archived from the original on 24 January 2011. Retrieved 22 January 2011. 
  13. ^ "Lane boss ready to buy as Britton departs". The Sheffield Star. 21 January 2011. Retrieved 22 January 2011. 
  14. ^ "Blades poised to cash in as Swans go up". The Sheffield Star. 2 June 2011. Retrieved 18 June 2011. 
  15. ^ a b c d "Games played by Leon Britton in 2010/2011". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 29 March 2014. 
  16. ^ "Reading 2 – 4 Swansea". BBC Sport. 30 May 2011. Retrieved 30 May 2011. 
  17. ^ "Swans ace wants to stay put". Sky Sports. 27 March 2012. Retrieved 13 May 2012. 
  18. ^ "Britton signs new deal". Swansea City A.F.C. 30 March 2012. 
  19. ^ "Leon Britton handed new Swansea City contract". BBC Sport. 5 February 2013. Retrieved 5 February 2013. 
  20. ^ "Bradford 0–5 Swansea". BBC Sport. 24 February 2013. Retrieved 24 February 2013. 
  21. ^ Watham, Chris (11 May 2018). "Leon Britton: Swansea City great announces playing retirement". BBC Sport. Retrieved 11 May 2018. 
  22. ^ "Angel Rangel replaces Leon Britton as Swansea captain". Sky Sports. 13 November 2017. Retrieved 28 December 2017. 
  23. ^ "Leon Britton: Caretaker boss rules out being permanent Swansea manager". BBC Sport. 21 December 2017. Retrieved 25 December 2017. 
  24. ^ "Leon Britton adamant he does not want Swansea job after 1–1 draw with Crystal Palace". Retrieved 26 December 2017. 
  25. ^ "Liverpool 5–0 Swansea City". BBC Sport. 26 December 2017. 
  26. ^ "Carlos Carvalhal: Swansea City appoint ex-Sheffield Wednesday boss". 28 December 2017. Retrieved 28 December 2017. 
  27. ^ "Swansea City:Leon Britton turns down coaching role to play again". 30 December 2017. Retrieved 30 December 2017. 
  28. ^ "Swans star Leon Britton's previous life as child TV star revealed". WalesOnline. 24 July 2012. Retrieved 29 March 2014. 
  29. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2002/2003". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  30. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2003/2004". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  31. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2004/2005". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  32. ^ a b "Games played by Leon Britton in 2005/2006". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  33. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2006/2007". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  34. ^ a b "Games played by Leon Britton in 2007/2008". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  35. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2008/2009". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  36. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2009/2010". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  37. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2011/2012". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  38. ^ a b "Games played by Leon Britton in 2012/2013". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  39. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2013/2014". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  40. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2014/2015". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  41. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2015/2016". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  42. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2016/2017". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 22 December 2017. 
  43. ^ "Games played by Leon Britton in 2017/2018". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  44. ^ Tweedale, Alistair (21 December 2017). "Leon Britton appointed Swansea caretaker manager". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 27 December 2017. 
  45. ^ "Managers: Leon Britton". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 28 December 2017. 
  46. ^ "Swansea 2 – 1 Wrexham". BBC Sport. 11 May 2005. Retrieved 27 August 2014. 
  47. ^ "Wrexham 1 – 2 Swansea". BBC Sport. 29 March 2006. Retrieved 27 August 2014. 

External links[edit]