29 April 2007

George McCartney

A star of the Under-21 set-up; a goal-scoring international debut; Premiership experience - George McCartney was marked as a star from the off. Then there followed injuries, an alleged fear of flying and a falling out with Lawrie Sanchez, a brief international return and a sudden premature retirement...

Name: George McCartney
Born: 24 April 1981, Belfast
Height: 6.00 ft
Weight: 12.07 st
Position: Defender

Representative Honours: Northern Ireland: 34 Full Caps / 1 Goal (2001-2010), 5 Under-21 Caps (2000-2001), Under-18, Under-16, Under-15.
Club Honours: (with Sunderland) Football League Championship Winner 2004/05; (with West Ham) Football League Championship Play-Off Winner 2011/12.
Awards: PFA Championship Team of the Year 2004/05.

Club Career:
Clubs.......... --Seasons-- Signed --League-- -FACup- FL Cup -Other-

Sunderland..... 00/01-05/06 Aug-98 117(17)/ 0 10(3)/0 6(2)/0 .2(0)/0
West Ham United 06/07-08/09 Aug-06 .54 (7)/ 1 .4(0)/0 6(0)/0
Sunderland .... 08/09- date Aug-08 .36 (5)/ 0 .2(1)/0 2(0)/0

Leeds United .. 10/11 .Loan Sep-10 .17 (0)/ 0
Leeds United .. 10/11 .Loan Jan-11 .15 (0)/ 0
West Ham United 11/12 .Loan Aug-11 .36 (2)/ 1 .1(0)/0 1(0)/0 .0(2)/0 
West Ham United 12/13- date Jul-12 .29 (5)/ 0 ....... 5(0)/0


Biography:
George McCartney rose through the ranks at Sunderland, signing as a professional in August 1998. He made his debut for the Black Cats in a 2-0 defeat at Leicester City in February 2001, gradually establishing himself as a first-team regular over the next season and a half. A versatile player, he has featured most regularly at left-back at club level, though also proved useful at centre-back.

Having played regularly at Under-21 level through the 2002 European Championship qualifying campaign Sammy McIlroy had no hesitation in including him in the Full squad. An unused substitute for the World Cup qualifiers against Bulgaria and Czech Republic in June 2001 and against Denmark that September, he replaced Colin Murdock at centre-half to make his debut against Iceland. He marked the occasion with a goal in a 3-0 victory (his only senior goal at any level to date), and retained his place for a 1-0 win over Malta the following month.

At club level McCartney both suffered relegation and celebrated promotion with Sunderland, and rose to become club captain. Only injuries ruled him out of the first eleven. The story was similar at international level, though he missed a match in Armenia apparently because he was scared to fly there. The appointment of Lawrie Sanchez brought a much tougher regime to the Northern Ireland set-up, and McCartney felt he was forced to play through injuries. Friction between the player and manager grew until, on the eve of a friendly against Malta in August 2005, McCartney announced he would not make himself available for selection under Sanchez.

Due to injuries McCartney had a limited role in Sunderland’s return to the Premiership in 2005/06, playing just thirteen times as they were relegated in last place. Although still ruled out by injury Alan Pardew stepped in to sign him for West Ham on the eve of the 2006/07 campaign in a £1,000,000 deal. He had to wait until October before making his Hammers debut, and put in a number of valiant performances as the club successfully fought relegation.

In June 2007, with Lawrie Sanchez replaced as Northern Ireland manager by Nigel Worthington,
McCartney announced that he would again be available for international selection. He made his return to the international scene in a 3-1 win over Liechtenstein.

Through the summer of 2008 McCartney was linked with moves away from Upton Park with destinations a diverse as Rangers and AC Milan mentioned. It seemed likely that he would remain with West Ham when he signed a new contract on 22 July, but on 31 August, transfer deadline day he returned to Sunderland in a £6 million deal. He cited his wife's failure to settle in London as the reason for his departure.

McCartney continued to struggle with injuries and "personal problems" caused a dip in form through the 2009/10 season. He was then not awarded a squad number by Sunderland boss Steve Bruce at the start of the following campaign and it seems likely his Black Cats career is over. Two loan spells at promotion-chasing Championship side Leeds appeared to have re-ignited his domestic and international career.

After being dropped from Nigel Worthington's Northern Ireland squad in the autumn of 2010 McCartney was recalled for the Carling Nations Cup match against Scotland in February 2011. On the eve of the match it was announced that he had decided to retire from international football with immediate effect.

In August 2011 McCartney returned to West Ham on a season long loan. He was voted as the club's Players' Player of the Year as the Hammers were promoted via the play-offs and his move was made permanent that summer on a two-year contract.

West Ham Site Bio

Northern Ireland Cap Details:
(theGAWA)

05-09-2001 Iceland....... H W 3-0 WCQ 1 Goal
06-10-2001 Malta......... A W 1-0 WCQ
13-02-2002 Poland........ N L 1-4 FR sub
27-03-2002 Liechtenstein. A D 0-0 FR 

17-04-2002 Spain......... H L 0-5 FR
21-08-2002 Cyprus........ H D 0-0 FR
12-10-2002 Spain......... A L 0-3 ECQ
16-10-2002 Ukraine....... H D 0-0 ECQ
12-02-2003 Finland....... H L 0-1 FR
02-04-2003 Greece........ H L 0-2 ECQ
03-06-2003 Italy......... A L 0-2 FR
11-06-2003 Spain......... H D 0-0 ECQ
06-09-2003 Ukraine....... A D 0-0 ECQ
10-09-2003 Armenia....... H L 0-1 ECQ
11-10-2003 Greece........ A L 0-1 ECQ sent-off 69
18-02-2004 Norway........ H L 1-4 FR
08-09-2004 Wales......... A D 2-2 WCQ sub
13-10-2004 Austria....... H D 3-3 WCQ
09-02-2005 Canada........ H L 0-1 FR
04-06-2005 Germany....... H L 1-4 FR
22-08-2007 Liechtenstein. H W 3-1 ECQ
08-09-2007 Latvia........ A L 0-1 ECQ
12-09-2007 Iceland....... A L 1-2 ECQ
17-10-2007 Sweden........ A D 1-1 ECQ
06-02-2008 Bulgaria...... H L 0-1 FR
06-09-2008 Slovakia...... A L 1-2 WCQ
10-09-2008 Czech Republic H D 0-0 WCQ
11-10-2008 Slovenia...... A L 0-2 WCQ
15-10-2008 San Marino.... H W 4-0 WCQ
11-02-2009 San Marino.... A W 3-0 WCQ
01-04-2009 Slovenia...... H W 1-0 WCQ
12-08-2009 Israel........ H D 1-1 FR
14-11-2009 Serbia........ H L 0-1 FR
03-03-2010 Albania....... A L 0-1 FR


Summary: 32(2)/1. Won 6, Drew 10, Lost 18. 

Year
Caps
St
Sb
Gl
2001
2
2
0
1
2002
6
5
1
0
2003
7
7
0
0
2004
3
2
1
0
2005
2
2
0
0
2006
0
0
0
0
2007
4
4
0
0
2008
5
5
0
0
2009
4
4
0
0
2010
1
1
0
0

34
32
2
1
 


Northern Ireland Under-21 Cap Details:
06-10-2000 Denmark....... H L 0-3 ECQ
23-03-2001 Czech Republic H L 0-2 ECQ
27-03-2001 Bulgaria...... A L 0-2 ECQ
01-06-2001 Bulgaria...... H D 1-1 ECQ
31-08-2001 Denmark....... A L 0-2 ECQ

Summary: 5/0. Won 0, Drew 1, Lost 4.

No comments:

Who was Northern Ireland's Greatest World Cup Player & Team? (select up to eleven players)

© NIFG 2006-2015