Larrieu as a Plymouth Argyle player
|Full name||Romain Larrieu|
|Date of birth||31 August 1976|
|Place of birth||Mont-de-Marsan, France|
|Height||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|2007||→ Gillingham (loan)||14||(0)|
|2007||→ Yeovil Town (loan)||6||(0)|
|2012–2013||Plymouth Argyle (assistant manager)|
|2013||Plymouth Argyle (caretaker)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
Romain Larrieu (born 31 August 1976) is a French former professional footballer who played as a goalkeeper. Born in Mont-de-Marsan, he has played in the Football League for Plymouth Argyle, Gillingham and Yeovil Town. He also appeared in Ligue 2 for Valence, and was last registered with semi-professional South West Peninsula League club Camelford in 2014.
Larrieu started his career in his native France at Montpellier, but finding it impossible to dislodge the experienced French international Bruno Martini, he decided to move on. His next club was ASOA Valence where he played with another future Plymouth player, David Friio, until their relegation into the French Third Division when Larrieu was released along with Friio in the summer of 2000.
Following a six-month break he was recommended to Argyle's manager, Paul Sturrock and was signed on a one-month trial contract, making his debut on 6 December, in the Football League Trophy versus Bristol City. Having been signed as a back-up keeper, he played 14 league games following injury to regular goalkeeper Jon Sheffield and despite obvious rustiness and nerves he was rewarded with a permanent contract.
Larrieu was surprisingly made first choice for the 2001–02 season but this decision proved to be a masterstroke. Plymouth became champions of Division Three (now League 2) with Larrieu conceding only 28 goals, keeping 27 clean-sheets (a club record) and pulling off many a fine save. He was also named in the PFA Division Three team of the year. He was again first choice for the 2002–03 season as he became a fan favourite at Home Park. After that he was linked with a shock move to then Premiership champions Arsenal. But his 2003–04 season was cut short after 6 games after sustaining damaged knee ligaments. Argyle won promotion from Division 2 (now League 1) that season, and in 2004–05 he shared goalkeeping duties with Luke McCormick in the Championship.
The following season (2005–06) Larrieu resumed duties as first choice goalkeeper playing in 45 of the 46 league fixtures again putting in impressive displays. In the 2006–07 season, he suffered with testicular cancer, and after his recovery,he was allowed to go out on loan to Gillingham.
He made his debut for Gillingham in a 2–0 away defeat to Swansea City on 23 January 2007. What was originally intended to be a short term loan was extended until mid-April, because of injury to Gillingham goalkeeper Kelvin Jack.
The 2007–08 season was another disappointment for Larrieu. With McCormick continuing to be the first choice goalkeeper, Larrieu was sent on loan to Yeovil Town for a month-long loan, where he made six appearances in the league for them. After some impressive form he returned to Plymouth and established himself as the number one goalkeeper until Christmas, where a second bout of ill health ended up ruling him out for the rest of the season, meaning he was only able to play 15 games for Plymouth all year.
Larrieu began the 2008–09 season behind former Arsenal man Graham Stack, but returned to the side in the 2–1 win at Watford and kept his place for the remainder of the season, proving to be as influential as ever in his 40 league appearances. In recognition of his performances throughout the season, Larrieu was voted as Plymouth Argyle Player of the Year by the clubs supporters. As of the 2009–10 season he will be club captain. On 5 May 2012, Larrieu announced that the club's final match of the 2011–12 campaign against Cheltenham Town would be his last as a Plymouth Argyle player, allowing him to concentrate on his coaching duties.
At the beginning of the 2013-14 season it was rumoured that Larrieu was looking for a return to playing and appeared in a number trial matches and pre-season friendlies. He eventually signed for Tiverton Town to provide experienced cover, but did not make an appearance. In January 2014 Larrieu signed for South West Peninsula League club Camelford as cover for their regular 'keeper who was due to be unavailable for a short period. Larrieu played just one game for Camelford, a 4–0 loss to Torpoint Athletic.
Now retired from playing, Larrieu retrained as a car mechanic, and in October 2015, was named as President of the Argyle Fans' Trust, a supporter group very highly respected by the Plymouth Argyle board.
In September 2011, Larrieu was appointed first team player-coach to caretaker manager Carl Fletcher following the dismissal of Peter Reid on a temporary basis. The pair took over permanently in November. In May 2012, the club confirmed that Larrieu had signed a rolling 12-month contract to become the club's assistant manager. Larrieu served as caretaker manager for one game in January 2013 after Fletcher was sacked and continued as assistant manager when John Sheridan joined the club. He was released from his contract in May after more than 12 years of service to the club. Larrieu is now looking for offers from other clubs.
As a player
- As of match played on 5 May 2012.
|Club||League||Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Other||Total|
|ASOA Valence||Ligue 2|
|Plymouth Argyle||Third Division|
As a manager
- As of 5 June 2014.
|Plymouth Argyle (Caretaker manager)||England||2 January 2013||6 January 2013||1||0||0||1||0.00|
- Plymouth Argyle
- Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2007). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2007–08. Edinburgh: Mainstream Publishing. p. 241. ISBN 978-1-84596-246-3.
- "Romain Larrieu". Plymouth Argyle F.C. Archived from the original on 9 June 2012. Retrieved 21 May 2013.
- "Plymouth players rewarded". BBC Sport. 15 April 2002. Retrieved 9 August 2008.
- Skinner, Matt (4 May 2009). "Le Keeper". Plymouth Argyle F.C. Retrieved 7 May 2009.
- Cowdery, Rick (5 May 2012). "Adieu, Mon Brave". Plymouth Argyle F.C. Retrieved 5 May 2012.
- "Romain Larrieu will today announce his retirement from professional football". The Herald. 5 May 2012. Retrieved 5 May 2012.
- McNichol, Rob (5 May 2012). "First class second choice". Plymouth Argyle F.C. Archived from the original on 14 June 2012. Retrieved 21 May 2013.
- "Romain Larrieu beaten four times as Torpoint punish Camelford". Cornish Guardian. 11 Jan 2014. Retrieved 11 Nov 2015.
- "Romain Larrieu named president of Argyle Fans' Trust". Plymouth Herald. 31 Oct 2015. Retrieved 11 Nov 2015.
- "Romain Larrieu: Plymouth Argyle assistant boss leaves". BBC Sport. BBC. 1 May 2013. Retrieved 21 May 2013.
- "Romain Larrieu 'saddened' after Plymouth Argyle end his 13-year stretch at club". The Herald. Plymouth. 2 May 2013. Retrieved 21 May 2013.