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Jonathan Woodgate


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Jonathan Woodgate

Jonathan Woodgate was signed on transfer deadline day 2003 from Leeds for 9m, a move that didn't go down well with Leeds fans, as Woodgate is a prized asset. The England defender started his career at Leeds at the age of 13, and adapted to play at central defence. Woodgate made his Leeds debut in 1998 aged 19, and after a very successful season at Elland Road, he was called up by Kevin Keegan to make his England debut against Bulgaria in June 1999 in a Euro 2000 qualifier.

His career started so brightly, but he hit the papers for all the wrong reasons when he was charged by police for an attack on an Asian student outside a Leeds nightclub. After a high-profile court case, Woodgate was forced to do community service and the FA banned him - along with then Leeds team-mate Lee Bowyer who is now at United - from being selected for England for three years.

Woodgate lost a little of his form after the court case, but after being selected by Sven Goran Eriksson for a friendly against Portugal in September 2002 he bounced back and signed a 5-year contract with Newcastle in January 2003. Woodgate made his debut in a 2-1 win against Chelsea at St James' in March, and didn't put a foot wrong for the rest of the season, helping Newcastle qualify for the Champions League again. Woodgate will be hoping that he can put his troubled past behind him and help United's quest to win some silverware soon, as well as becoming an England regular.

Playing Position: Defender

Born: 22nd January 1980

Height: 6'

Squad Number: 27

Date signed/Fee: January 2003 / 9m

NUFC Debut: March 2003 v.s Chelsea (H)

Previous Club: Leeds

International Honours: England full caps

Total NUFC Games/Goals: 10(0)/0