Matt Jones (footballer, born 1986)
|Full name||Matthew Robert Jones|
|Date of birth||11 May 1986|
|Place of birth||Stoke-on-Trent, England|
|Height||1.90 m (6 ft 3 in)|
|Elm City Express|
|2003–2005||West Bromwich Albion|
|2005–2008||Sacred Heart Pioneers|
|2009||Western Mass Pioneers||4||(0)|
|2015–2016||→ Tondela (loan)||10||(0)|
|2016||→ Philadelphia Union (loan)||1||(0)|
|2016||→ Bethlehem Steel (loan)||5||(0)|
|2017–||Elm City Express||17||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 22 May 2017.
He started playing as a senior with the Western Mass Pioneers in the United States, leaving for Portugal in 2009 and representing several clubs there.
College and amateur
Jones moved to the United States in 2005, to attend and play college soccer at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Connecticut. He helped the team finish fourth in regular season of the Northeast Conference, losing in the playoffs to eventual champions Monmouth University, 1–2.
Jones was selected to the All-Northeast Conference second team, the NSCAA All-New England second team and was voted Male Rookie of the Year as a freshman in 2005, being picked to the All-Northeast Conference first team and the All-Mideast Region second team in 2007 and 2008. In 2009, he was awarded the "All Pioneer" honour on top of being a nominated in the final 30 of the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in 2009; additionally, he was named NEC Scholar Athlete of the year in 2009, and graduated magna cum laude with a GPA of 3.7 and a degree in Business administration.
Jones turned professional in 2009 with the Western Mass Pioneers. He made his professional debut on 25 April of that year in the side's 1–3 opening day away defeat against the Harrisburg City Islanders.
Jones was signed by Portuguese team C.D. Santa Clara, before the start of the 2009–10 season. He immediately made himself first-choice at the second division club, going on to appear in 21 matches out of 30 in that first campaign.
In June 2011, Jones went on trial with Scottish Premier League side Aberdeen. However, nothing came of it, and he continued playing in Portugal's second level, successively representing Madeira's C.F. União and C.F. Os Belenenses.
Jones only missed one league game in 42 for the latter in the 2012–13 campaign, helping it return to the Primeira Liga after three years. He made his debut in the competition on 18 August 2013, in a 0–3 home loss to Rio Ave FC.
On 9 February 2016, Jones was confirmed as the latest Philadelphia Union signing, arriving on a season-long loan. In April of the following year, he joined National Premier Soccer League club Elm City Express. He made his debut on 6 May, in a 2–0 win over Greater Lowell United FC. Jones played all 12 group games and the subsequent five playoff matches as Elm City won the NPSL title.
- Vale reject Jones earns contract in Portugal; This Is Staffordshire, 18 August 2009
- Soccer Box Score; NEC, 11 November 2005
- Official Match Information Archived 30 April 2009 at the Wayback Machine.; USL Soccer, 25 April 2009
- "Matthew Robert Jones é outro dos ajustes ao plantel para esta temporada" [Matthew Robert Jones is another roster adjustment for this season] (in Portuguese). CD Santa Clara. 25 July 2009. Archived from the original on 28 September 2009. Retrieved 3 November 2009.
- "Portuguese football's lone Englishman rewarded for daring to be different". PortuGOAL. 3 November 2009. Retrieved 3 November 2009.
- "More new faces on show this morning". Aberdeen F.C. 27 June 2011. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
- "Guarda-redes Matt Jones e avançado Tozé Marreco assegurados no União" [Goalkeeper Matt Jones and forward Tozé Marreco confirmed at União] (in Portuguese). Diário de Notícias. 30 June 2011. Retrieved 30 June 2011.
- "Watch out Joe Hart: Meet the top-flight English keeper you've never heard of". FourFourTwo. 11 October 2013. Retrieved 19 May 2015.
- "Bem-vindo de volta Belenenses" [Welcome back Belenenses] (in Portuguese). Palavras ao Poste. 26 February 2013. Retrieved 14 March 2014.
- "Rio Ave inicia campeonato com triunfo no Restelo" [Rio Ave start championship with win at the Restelo] (in Portuguese). TSF. 18 August 2013. Retrieved 6 September 2017.
- "Belenenses empresta Matt Jones ao Tondela" [Belenenses loan Matt Jones to Tondela] (in Portuguese). SAPO. 30 June 2015. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
- Geraldo, Inês (14 August 2015). "Tondela 1–2 Sporting" (in Portuguese). RTP. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
- "Philadelphia Union acquire goalkeeper Matt Jones on loan from Portuguese first division club Belenenses". Major League Soccer. 9 February 2016. Retrieved 9 February 2016.
- "Delighted to welcome Matt Jones to the 2017 @elmcityexpress roster! He played in Portugal for 7 years and was at the Philly Union last year". Twitter. 7 April 2017. Retrieved 22 May 2017.
- "Game Report – Game ID #4035413". National Premier Soccer League. 6 May 2017. Retrieved 22 May 2017.