|NB: The first section of this page is now
well and truly obselete, but we include it for historical interest!
||Signing for Darlington represents something
of a new beginning for the
much-travelled Stuart Elliott.
Since joining Newcastle in 1995, the London-born defender has alternated between loan
spells at a dazzling array of unfashionable (and skint) lower league clubs and appearing
for the United Intermediate and Reserve teams.
Indeed, thanks to Kevin Keegan, even that dubious
pleasure was denied him, when the then-Newcastle manager resigned from the reserve league
for a season in a regrettable dispute over playing second-string matches at St.James'
At times throughout his Newcastle career, Elliott looked on the verge of
making that crucial breakthrough into the first team setup, most notably
under Kenny Dalglish, when he was included on the bench for the dour
jock's first match in charge (away at Southampton in January 1997.)
However he wasn't called upon that afternoon, a fate that befell him on
the other five occasions he was named as substitute, the last being in
early 1998 at Hillsborough. The records will show that he was included for both the
Champions league games at home to Croatia Zagreb and against Barcelona in the Nou Camp,
but the reality was that the European rules required a large number of replacements to be
named and Elliott was making the numbers up.
Although his wandering around the lower leagues had started under Dalglish, it was the
arrival of Ruud Gullit that saw him almost
permanently living out of a suitcase, as the Dutchman just didn't rate
him. It also rapidly became apparent that despite the good reports
submitted by reserve coach Tommy Craig, Bobby Robson had decided that he was to be part of
the long-overdue clearout of fringe players, who were simply marking time in the second
While Elliott was never afforded the opportunity of establishing himself
in the Newcastle first team, he became a regular performer for the
reserves, and eventually captained the side, which at times included
England internationals such as Steve Howey, John Barnes and Stuart Pearce.
He picked up a couple of Northumberland Senior Cup winners medals, and in what turned out
to be his final game in a black and white short, smashed home a 35 yard effort at
Kingston Park against Newcastle Blue Star in the 2000 final held last May. He has
been called upon to take the odd penalty for the reserves, and managed a handful of goals
for United from open play, including one at St.James' Park against Walsall in early 1998.
A mixed bag of loan appearances saw him at various times the subject of firm bids
(£100,000 from Wrexham), given the cold shoulder (Stockport) and sent off (on his league
debut at Hull), but despite playing at times in a midfield role, he never managed a goal
for any of his temporary employers.
Ultimately Elliott was a victim of the continual policy of buying in
central defenders by successive Newcastle managers, and by the time things started to
change, he found himself upstaged by younger rivals, principally the Scottish
international brothers Steve and Gary Caldwell.
Hopefully a permanent deal at Darlington will allow the lad to carve out a career for
himself in a more settled environment, although with news breaking of the departure of
Hodgson, the player must feel that he's just fated never to establish himself.
Perhaps a comment made by Bournemouth assistant manager John Williams best sums up Stuart:
"He is a no-frills type of player who looks very comfortable on the ball."
PS - Stuart has a namesake playing professional football, who moved
across from Glentoran in the Irish Republic to Motherwell in 2000 and then on to Hull
City. Numerous media sources have frequently managed to confuse the two !
His finest 45 minutes?
||A clearly delighted Elliott in the colours
of Darlington salutes the Quakers fans.
The date was September 6th 2000, the venue the City Ground, Nottingham.
Thanks to an Elliott effort, Darlo beat Nottingham Forest 2-1 on the night
and 4-3 on aggregrate in a League Cup first round tie.
The scores were locked at 1-1 with five minutes remaining when
Elliott let fly from an estimated 45 yards out, and saw his effort whizz past a bemused
Dave Beasant at the Bridgeford end of the ground.
Despite having scored for Darlo in the first game at Feethams, Elliott was only introduced
as half time sub in the second leg - admittedly he does look a bit like David Fairclough
in some lights...
Other goals: although he's yet to score in the
football league, Elliott has been on target on a few other occasions - none were quite as
spectacular as that one at Forest though....
22nd Aug 2000 Darlington 2 Nottingham Forest 2 - League Cup
25th Sep 2000 Bradford 7 Darlington 2 - League Cup
9th Jan 2001 York 0 Darlington 4 - LDV Vans Trophy
3rd Nov 2001 Scarborough 2 Leigh RMI 5 - Conference
19th Nov 2005 Northwich 1 Moor Green 1 - Conference North
13th Dec 2005 Northwich 2 Woking 1 - FA Cup
|Stuart Thomas Elliott
born 27th August 1977,
5ft 8in, 11st 5lbs.
(while on loan at Hull City):
Hull City 1 Northampton Town 1, Division Three, 1st March 1997
(Sent off in the 90th minute.)
Other red cards:
6th Apr 1999 Walsall v Wrexham
29th Aug 2000 Darlo v Plymouth
17th Oct 2000 Darlo v Kidderminster
Elliott in action for
|| Aug 95
Victoria (Conf N)
Conf = football conference, NL = Northern League, DM =
Doctor Martens UN = Unibond
Stuart has also been employed in recent seasons as a youth coach at
Newcastle Academy (initially by former Academy Director John Carver)
* in a rather odd scenario, although he played five games for Stockport, none of them
were at their home ground of Edgeley Park.
** Stuart played for both clubs at various times in
Stuart also had a brief spell on loan at Dundee while at Newcastle, but didn't play
a competitive match. There were also short trial spells with Scunthorpe and
Kidderminster, plus rumours of ones at Northampton and Crewe which never
apparently took place.
And we did hear of him turning out one Sunday morning for his local boozer
when living back on Tyneside.....