|Full name||Patrick Karl Kruse|
|Date of birth||30 November 1953|
|Place of birth||Arlesey, England|
|Playing position||Centre back|
|1974||→ Mansfield Town (loan)||6||(1)|
|1975||→ Torquay United (loan)||10||(0)|
|1982||→ Northampton Town (loan)||18||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
Patrick Karl Kruse (born 30 November 1953) is an English former professional football centre back who is best remembered for his five-year spell in the Football League with Brentford, for whom he made over 200 appearances. Kruse is known for scoring what is believed to be the fastest own goal of all time, netting past his own keeper after just six seconds of play in a match in January 1977.
Kruse secured a move to the top tier of English football in June 1970 when he signed for the club he supports, Leicester City. He had to wait over two years to make his professional debut for the Foxes, which came with a start in a 1–0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur on 27 April 1974. Owing to Malcolm Munro's injury, he filled in again two days later versus Norwich City, this time helping Leicester to a clean sheet in a 3–0 win. Kruse failed to make another first team appearance for the Foxes and departed in March 1975, having made just two appearances in three years at Filbert Street.
Mansfield Town (loan)
Torquay United (loan and permanent signing)
Kruse linked up with former Leicester City assistant manager Malcolm Musgrove to sign for Fourth Division club Torquay United on loan in March 1975. He made 10 appearances during the remainder of the 1974–75 season and signed permanently at the end of the campaign. Kruse established himself in the team the following season and won the club's Player of the Year award. The most memorable event of Kruse's time with Torquay came in a match versus Cambridge United in January 1977, when he scored what is claimed to be the quickest own goal of all time, scoring after just six seconds of play. Kruse departed Torquay United in March 1977, having made 79 league appearances and scored four goals during two years at Plainmoor.
Kruse joined Fourth Division strugglers Brentford in March 1977, for what was then a club-record fee for a defender, £20,000. Opinions about the transfer were mixed, as he had been Brentford forward Gordon Sweetzer's marker in his final game for Torquay United, in which Sweetzer had scored a hat-trick. Kruse quickly established himself in the team and made 15 appearances and scoring two goals in what remained of the 1976–77 season He flourished under Bill Dodgin's management and became a stalwart in the Brentford defence for the next four seasons, assuming the captaincy and forming partnerships with other centre backs Paul Shrubb, Nigel Smith and Danis Salman. Kruse averaged 42 appearances a season and helped the club to promotion to the Third Division in the 1977–78 season. His performances during the 1979–80 season won him the club's Player of the Year award. Kruse was out of favour under new manager Fred Callaghan during the 1981–82 season and made just one appearance. He left Brentford at the end of the season, after making 201 appearances and scored 12 goals in just over five years at Griffin Park.
Northampton Town (loan)
Kruse dropped into Non-League football to sign for Alliance Premier League club Barnet in 1982. He made 28 appearances and scored one goal before retiring at the end of the 1982–83 season. Differences with manager Barry Fry saw Kruse turn his back on the game at age 29.
During his time at Brentford, Kruse commuted to the town from his Midlands home with David McKellar and picked up Jim McNichol and Bob Booker on the way. After retiring from football, Kruse settled in Hitchin and became a builder.
As a player
As an individual
- Torquay United Player of the Year: 1975–76
- Brentford Supporters' Player of the Year: 1979–80
- Brentford Players' Player of the Year: 1979–80
|Club||Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Total|
|Leicester City||1973–74||First Division||2||0||0||0||0||0||2||0|
|Torquay United (loan)||1974–75||Fourth Division||10||0||—||—||10||0|
|Northampton Town (loan)||1981–82||Fourth Division||18||0||—||—||18||0|
- "Pat Kruse". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 21 December 2016.
- Haynes, Graham; Coumbe, Frank (2006). Timeless Bees: Brentford F.C. Who's Who 1920–2006. Harefield: Yore Publications. pp. 139–140. ISBN 978-0955294914.
- Bill Edgar (17 July 2006). "Hilarity and tragedy: curse of the own goal". The Times.
- Gifford, Clive (2010). The Kingfisher Football Encyclopedia. Kingfisher. p. 29. ISBN 0753419610.
- "Levski Sofia defender in tears after own goal record". Retrieved 21 November 2014.
- "Local Studies Education Series – Torquay United" (PDF). Retrieved 29 April 2019.
- "Pat Kruse – Leicester City career stats – FoxesHistory". FoxesTalk Forum. Retrieved 21 November 2014.
- "Transfers to or from Arlesey Town – FoxesHistory". FoxesTalk Forum. Retrieved 21 November 2014.
- Lane, David (2005). Cult Bees & Legends: Volume Two. Hampton Hill: Legends Publishing. pp. 46–59. ISBN 0954368282.
- White, Eric, ed. (1989). 100 Years Of Brentford. Brentford FC. pp. 394–396. ISBN 0951526200.
- Brentford Official Matchday Magazine versus Mansfield Town 08/08/98. Blackheath: Morganprint. 1998. p. 19.
- Croxford, Mark; Lane, David; Waterman, Greville (2011). The Big Brentford Book of the 70s. Legends Publishing. p. 295. ISBN 978-1906796709.
- Footymad Limited. "Disappointing end to the season for the Bees !!". Retrieved 21 November 2014.
- "Brentford | News | Latest News | Latest News | WHERE ARE THEY NOW?". Archived from the original on 30 July 2012. Retrieved 27 March 2017.