Tony Craig

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Tony Craig
Personal information
Full name Tony Andrew Craig[1]
Date of birth (1985-04-20) 20 April 1985 (age 33)[1]
Place of birth Greenwich, England
Height 1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)[1]
Playing position Central defender, left back
Club information
Current team
Bristol Rovers
Number 5
Youth career
0000–2003 Millwall
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2003–2007 Millwall 79 (2)
2004–2005Wycombe Wanderers (loan) 14 (0)
2007–2008 Crystal Palace 13 (0)
2008Millwall (loan) 5 (1)
2008–2012 Millwall 121 (4)
2011Leyton Orient (loan) 4 (0)
2012–2015 Brentford 111 (0)
2015–2018 Millwall 65 (2)
2018– Bristol Rovers 28 (2)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 00:19, 5 October 2018 (UTC)

Tony Andrew Craig (born 20 April 1985) is an English professional football central defender who plays for Bristol Rovers. He began his career at Millwall and made over 320 appearances across four spells with the club.

Career[edit]

Millwall[edit]

Born in Greenwich, London, Craig came through the youth ranks at Millwall.[2] Adept as a central defender or a left back,[2] he received his maiden call into the first team squad for a First Division league match against Bradford City on 5 April 2003 and was an unused substitute during the 1–0 win.[3] Craig made his professional debut with a starting appearance in a 3–3 draw with Nottingham Forest on 26 April 2003 and lasted 67 minutes before being substituted for Robbie Ryan.[4] He started in the final game of the 2002–03 season at home to Coventry City and scored the first senior goal of his career in the 2–0 win, with the opener on 51 minutes.[4] Craig began the 2003–04 season as a virtual ever-present, making 10 appearances, but he dropped out of the squad entirely in October 2003.[5] He was again out of favour with manager Dennis Wise during the 2004–05 season and had to wait until 19 February 2005 for his first appearance,[6] which came with a start in a 1–0 defeat to Stoke City and he finished the campaign with 10 appearances.[7]

Under new manager Colin Lee, Craig made sporadic appearances during the opening two months of the 2005–06 season, before cementing a regular place in the team in late 2005 under replacement manager Dave Tuttle.[8] Two red cards failed to halt his progress and Craig finished the 2005–06 season with 33 appearances,[8] but he would begin the 2006–07 season in League One after Millwall's relegation.[9] Craig had a suspension and injury-affect first half of the 2006–07 season,[10] but was a regular pick after the New Year and finished the campaign with 32 appearances and one goal, which was scored on the final day versus Bradford City.[11] Craig departed the club in June 2007, having made 87 appearances and scored two goals in his four years as a first team player.[12]

Wycombe Wanderers (loan)[edit]

Craig joined League Two club Wycombe Wanderers on a one-month loan on 22 October 2004,[13] which was later extended to 22 January 2005.[14][15] He made 18 appearances for the Chairboys.[12]

Crystal Palace[edit]

On 27 June 2007, Craig joined Championship club Crystal Palace on a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee.[16] He had a successful start to his Palace career, starting in 13 of the Eagles' opening 14 games,[17] but a shoulder injury suffered in a 0–0 draw with Scunthorpe United on 3 November 2007 put him out of action for the next four months.[18] Upon his return to fitness, Craig failed to regain his place under new manager Neil Warnock and departed Selhurst Park in July 2008.[19]

Return to Millwall (loan)[edit]

Craig returned to Millwall, still in League One, on a one-month loan on 27 March 2008.[20] He made five appearances and scored against Carlisle United in the final match of his spell, before returning to Crystal Palace on 27 April.[12][21]

Third spell with Millwall[edit]

Craig signed permanently for the second time with Millwall on 11 July 2008, on a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee.[22] He made a personal-best 52 appearances during the 2008–09 season, scoring two goals and helping Millwall to a place at Wembley Stadium for the 2009 League One play-off Final versus Scunthorpe United.[23] Goals from Gary Alexander put the Lions 2–1 ahead, but the season ended in heartbreak for Craig after second half strikes from Matt Sparrow and Martyn Woolford sent Scunthorpe to the Championship.[24]

Craig was in and out of the team during the 2009–10 season and could not hold down a regular place until December 2009.[25] In the absence of Paul Robinson, Craig took over the captaincy.[26] Craig was hit by injuries twice during the season, first he suffered a fractured cheekbone and eye socket in a defeat to Wycombe Wanderers on 21 November 2009 and later a foot injury against Huddersfield Town in April 2010.[27] He made 35 appearances and scored two goals to help Millwall to the play-off Final for the second season in succession.[25] In the 2010 League One play-off Final, the Lions were triumphant and defeated Swindon Town 1–0 to return to the Championship after three seasons in League One, though Craig was forced off with a broken metatarsal on 44 minutes.[28]

Craig had a mixed 2010–11 season back in the Championship, having spells as a starter through the middle of the campaign he finished the campaign with 26 appearances.[29] Craig began the 2011–12 season as a regular starter, but fell out of favour and didn't reclaim his starting position until the final month of the season.[30] Craig left The Den in July 2012,[31] having made 141 appearances and scored four goals during his third stint with the club.[12]

Leyton Orient (loan)[edit]

Craig joined League One club Leyton Orient on a one-month loan on 24 November 2011, as cover for the departed Charlie Daniels.[32] Craig made four appearances for Orient and was recalled by Millwall on 28 December.[30][33]

Brentford[edit]

On 13 July 2012, Craig joined League One side Brentford on 13 July 2012 on a three-year contract for an undisclosed fee.[34] Craig had a successful first season with Brentford, appearing in all but four of the Bees' matches to finish with 55 appearances.[35] The season ended in heartbreak, with defeat to Yeovil Town in the 2013 League One play-off Final.[36] After missing the first game of the 2013–14 season through an ankle knock,[37] Craig was again an ever-present starter until he received a red card during a 0–0 draw with Carlisle United on 31 August 2013.[38] After serving his suspension, Craig returned to the side and despite breaking two bones in his hand during a 2–1 victory over Gillingham on 24 January 2014,[39] he saw out the game and played the subsequent matches with his hand in a cast.[40] Craig held the captaincy for much of the season (in place of the injured Kevin O'Connor) and jointly lifted the League One runners-up trophy with O'Connor after the final game of the season against Stevenage on 3 May.[41][42] He was voted the Brentford Players' Player of the Year for the 2013–14 season.[43]

Craig began the 2014–15 Championship season alongside James Tarkowski in central defence and started each of the club's first five games,[44] before receiving his first red card of the season on 23 August 2014, for bringing down former teammate Clayton Donaldson in the box after 16 minutes of a 1–1 draw with Birmingham City.[45] While suspended, Craig was replaced by Harlee Dean in the starting lineup and lost his place in the team for the first time since arriving at Griffin Park.[35][38][44] He signed a new contract on 11 November, which would run until the end of the 2016–17 season.[46] Craig again lost his starting place to Dean in January 2015 and fell out of the squad entirely when Liam Moore arrived on loan in late February.[47] After Moore was dropped in early March,[48] Craig returned to the bench and failed to appear again before the end of the season.[47] Craig finished the 2014–15 season having made 24 appearances and departed Griffin Park on 4 July 2015,[44] after his contract was terminated by mutual consent.[49] Craig made 129 appearances in three seasons with Brentford.[12]

Fourth spell with Millwall[edit]

On 4 July 2015, it was announced that Craig had dropped back down to League One to sign a two-year contract with newly-relegated Millwall on a free transfer.[50] He began the 2015–16 season as a regular,[51] before suffering a serious knee injury during a 0–0 draw with Bradford City on 31 October 2015.[52] He returned to fitness in April 2016 and appeared in each of the Lions' play-off matches, but was on the end of another Wembley defeat in the final versus Barnsley.[51] Craig was awarded a testimonial versus Brentford during the 2016–17 pre-season, which finished in a 1–1 draw.[53] Craig made a career-high 57 appearances during the 2016–17 season and played in a second-successive play-off final, in which he captained the Lions to promotion to the Championship with a 1–0 victory over Bradford City.[54] He made just eight appearances during the first half of the 2017–18 season,[55] before departing The Den for the final time on 31 January 2018.[56] Across his four spells with Millwall, Craig made 324 appearances and scored 9 goals.[12]

Bristol Rovers[edit]

On 1 February 2018, Craig moved to League One club Bristol Rovers on a free transfer.[57] In what remained of the 2017–18 season, he made 17 appearances and scored one goal.[55]

Honours[edit]

Millwall

Brentford

Individual

Personal life[edit]

Craig is married to Jocelyn Craig and has a daughter Scarlett Craig and a son Louie Craig [58] He is a Millwall supporter.[59]

Career statistics[edit]

As of match played 2 October 2018
Club Season League FA Cup League Cup Other Total
Division Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Millwall 2002–03[4] First Division 2 1 0 0 0 0 2 1
2003–04[60] 9 0 0 0 1 0 10 0
2004–05[7] Championship 10 0 0 0 10 0
2005–06[8] 28 0 2 0 3 0 33 0
2006–07[11] League One 30 1 0 0 1 0 1[a] 0 32 1
Total 79 2 2 0 5 0 1 0 87 2
Wycombe Wanderers (loan) 2004–05[7] League Two 14 0 2 0 2[a] 0 18 0
Crystal Palace 2007–08[61] Championship 13 0 0 0 1 0 14 0
Millwall (loan) 2007–08[61] League One 5 1 5 1
Millwall 2008–09[23] League One 44 2 3 0 1 0 4[b] 0 52 2
2009–10[25] 30 2 2 0 0 0 3[c] 0 35 2
2010–11[29] Championship 24 0 1 0 1 0 26 0
2011–12[30] 23 0 2 0 3 0 28 0
Total 121 4 8 0 5 0 7 0 146 5
Leyton Orient (loan) 2011–12[30] League One 4 0 0 0 4 0
Brentford 2012–13[35] League One 44 0 7 0 1 0 3[d] 0 55 0
2013–14[38] 44 0 4 0 1 0 1[a] 0 50 0
2014–15[44] Championship 23 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 24 0
Total 111 0 11 0 3 0 4 0 129 0
Millwall 2015–16[51] League One 18 1 0 0 1 0 5[e] 0 24 1
2016–17[54] 43 1 6 0 1 0 7[f] 0 57 1
2017–18[55] Championship 4 0 2 0 2 0 8 0
Millwall total 270 9 20 0 14 0 20 0 324 9
Bristol Rovers 2017–18[55] League One 17 1 17 1
2018–19[62] 11 1 0 0 2 0 0 0 13 1
Total 28 2 0 0 2 0 0 0 30 2
Career totals 440 11 31 0 20 0 26 0 527 11
  1. ^ a b c Appearances in EFL Trophy
  2. ^ 3 appearances in EFL League One play-offs, 1 appearance in EFL Trophy
  3. ^ Appearances in EFL League One play-offs
  4. ^ 2 appearances in EFL League One play-offs, 1 appearance in EFL Trophy
  5. ^ 3 appearances in EFL League One play-offs, 2 appearances in EFL Trophy
  6. ^ 4 appearances in EFL Trophy, 3 appearances in EFL League One play-offs

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2010). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2010–11. Mainstream Publishing. p. 99. ISBN 978-1-84596-601-0.
  2. ^ a b "Tony Craig – Defender – First Team – Millwall FC". www.millwallfc.co.uk. Archived from the original on 15 January 2018. Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  3. ^ "Espn Fc". Espn Fc. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  4. ^ a b c "Games played by Tony Craig in 2002/2003". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  5. ^ "Tony Craig Player Profile – ESPN FC". www.espnfc.com. Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  6. ^ "Wycombe Wanderers – December 2004 News from Chairboys on the Net". www.chairboys.co.uk. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  7. ^ a b c "Games played by Tony Craig in 2004/2005". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  8. ^ a b c "Games played by Tony Craig in 2005/2006". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  9. ^ "Millwall Complete History - Statto.com". Archived from the original on 2 April 2016. Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  10. ^ "Craig remains an injury doubt – Millwall FC". Millwall MAD. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  11. ^ a b "Games played by Tony Craig in 2006/2007". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  12. ^ a b c d e f Tony Craig at Soccerbase
  13. ^ "Wycombe Wanderers | News | Latest News | Latest News | MORE LOANS". wycombewanderers.co.uk. 22 October 2004. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  14. ^ "Wycombe Wanderers | News | Latest News | Latest News | CRAIG STAYS". wycombewanderers.co.uk. 11 November 2004. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  15. ^ "Wycombe Wanderers | News | Latest News | Latest News | LOAN SIGNING AND POSSIBLE EXTENSION". wycombewanderers.co.uk. 15 December 2004. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  16. ^ "Crystal Palace | News | Latest | Latest | Eagles Net Lions Defender". cpfc.co.uk. 27 June 2007. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  17. ^ "Tony Craig Player Profile – ESPN FC". www.espnfc.com. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  18. ^ "Craig injury twist (From Lancashire Telegraph)". Lancashiretelegraph.co.uk. 22 November 2007. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  19. ^ "Crystal Palace | News | Latest | Latest | Craig Becomes A Lion". cpfc.co.uk. 11 July 2008. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  20. ^ "Millwall | News | Breaking News | Breaking News | Tony returns". millwallfc.co.uk. 27 March 2008. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  21. ^ Holmesdale Online www.holmesdale.net (29 April 2008). "Craig returns to Eagles – Crystal Palace FC Supporters' Website – The Holmesdale Online". Holmesdale.net. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  22. ^ "Millwall | News | Breaking News | Breaking News | TC returns". millwallfc.co.uk. 11 July 2008. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
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  24. ^ "Millwall 2–3 Scunthorpe". 24 May 2009. Retrieved 13 January 2018.
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  26. ^ Hall, David (15 November 2010). Thoughts of a Millwall Optimist: Five Years in the Life of a Millwall Fan. Amberley Publishing Limited. ISBN 9781445620466.
  27. ^ Southwark News. "Southwark News – Southwark – Sport". southwarknews.co.uk. Archived from the original on 3 December 2014. Retrieved 8 February 2015.
  28. ^ Moore, Tom. "Ex-Millwall man hopes to get his Wembley way with Brentford". London 24. Archived from the original on 21 September 2016. Retrieved 8 February 2015.
  29. ^ a b "Games played by Tony Craig in 2010/2011". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  30. ^ a b c d "Games played by Tony Craig in 2011/2012". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  31. ^ "Millwall | News | Breaking News | Breaking News | TC a Bee". millwallfc.co.uk. 13 July 2012. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  32. ^ "Leyton Orient | News | Latest News | Latest News | Millwall Left Back Joins O's On Loan". leytonorient.com. 24 November 2011. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  33. ^ "Leyton Orient | News | Latest News | Latest News | Craig Recalled By Millwall". leytonorient.com. 28 December 2011. Retrieved 5 October 2018.
  34. ^ "Brentford FC". Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  35. ^ a b c "Games played by Tony Craig in 2012/2013". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  36. ^ "Brentford 1–2 Yeovil". BBC Sport. 19 May 2013. Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  37. ^ Simon Johnson (6 August 2013). "Tony Craig ruled out of clash with Daggers – Football – Sport – London Evening Standard". Standard.co.uk. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  38. ^ a b c d "Games played by Tony Craig in 2013/2014". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  39. ^ "BBC Sport – Brentford 2–1 Gillingham". Bbc.co.uk. 24 January 2014. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  40. ^ Street, Tim (5 February 2014). "Brentford defender in cast for another month". Get West London. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  41. ^ Amos, Stuart (23 February 2014). "Captain Craig: Hard work starts now for Brentford (From Your Local Guardian)". Yourlocalguardian.co.uk. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  42. ^ "Brentford Stevenage". Brentfordfc.co.uk. 3 May 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  43. ^ a b "Awards shared at Brentford FC Player of the Year Ball". Brentfordfc.co.uk. 5 May 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  44. ^ a b c d "Games played by Tony Craig in 2014/2015". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 8 February 2015.
  45. ^ "BBC Sport – Brentford 1–1 Birmingham City". BBC Sport. Retrieved 8 February 2015.
  46. ^ Chris Wickham. "Brentford Manager Mark Warburton hails "tremendous news" as defender Tony Craig signs new deal". brentfordfc.co.uk. Retrieved 8 February 2015.
  47. ^ a b "Tony Craig". espnfc.com. Retrieved 8 February 2015.
  48. ^ Moore, Tom (14 March 2015). "Why Leicester loanee Liam Moore didn't play for Brentford against Cardiff". Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  49. ^ "Brentford FC". Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  50. ^ "Tony Craig signs two-year deal with Millwall". Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  51. ^ a b c "Games played by Tony Craig in 2015/2016". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  52. ^ "Injury update on Millwall skipper Craig". Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  53. ^ "Brentford FC Millwall 1 Brentford 1". Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  54. ^ a b c "Games played by Tony Craig in 2016/2017". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 3 September 2017.
  55. ^ a b c d "Games played by Tony Craig in 2017/2018". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 3 September 2017.
  56. ^ "Lions stalwart Craig leaves Millwall". Retrieved 31 January 2018.
  57. ^ "Rovers Sign Defender Tony Craig". Retrieved 1 February 2018.
  58. ^ "Millwall skipper Tony Craig to donate some of his testimonial match cash to Headley Court". The Sun. 29 July 2016. Retrieved 13 January 2018.
  59. ^ Ian Winrow (25 August 2009). "Tony Craig gives his Millwall team-mates a crash course in rivalry – Football – Sport – London Evening Standard". Standard.co.uk. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  60. ^ "Games played by Tony Craig in 2003/2004". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  61. ^ a b "Games played by Tony Craig in 2007/2008". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 14 April 2014.
  62. ^ "Games played by Tony Craig in 2018/2019". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 15 August 2018.

External links[edit]