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For the Scottish rugby league footballer, see Chris Birchall (rugby league)
Chris Birchall
Birchall.JPG
Personal information
Full name Christopher Birchall CM
Date of birth 5 May 1984 (1984-05-05) (age 25)
Place of birth Stafford, England
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current club Los Angeles Galaxy
Number 11
Youth career
1993–2001 Port Vale
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2001–2006 Port Vale 78 (7)
2006–2009 Coventry City 29 (2)
2007 St. Mirren (loan) 9 (0)
2008 Carlisle United (loan) 2 (0)
2009 Brighton & Hove Albion 9 (0)
2009– Los Angeles Galaxy 9 (0)
National team
2005– Trinidad and Tobago 36 (4)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 30 October 2009.

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 13 August 2009

Christopher "Chris" Birchall[1] CM (born 5 May 1984 in Stafford) is an English-born Trinidadian footballer who currently plays in midfield for Major League Soccer side Los Angeles Galaxy.

Forging his career with local club Port Vale, he earned worldwide recognition by playing at the 2006 FIFA World Cup for Trinidad and Tobago - the country of his mother's birth. His exploits lead to a move up the leagues to Coventry City later that year. After short loan spells with Scottish side St. Mirren and Carlisle United, he moved on to Brighton & Hove Albion. In 2009 he moved to the United States to sign with MLS giants Los Angeles Galaxy.

Contents

Early life

Stafford-born Christopher Birchall attended Alleyne's High School in Stone, Staffordshire.[2]

Club career

Birchall started his career with Port Vale, having been associated with the Burslem based club since the age of nine. He made his debut under Brian Horton on 12 September 2001, replacing Neil Brisco 79 minutes into a 2-0 Second Round exit of the League Cup at Charlton Athletic's The Valley stadium. On 20 April 2002 he made his league debut, again replacing Brisco, this time in a 1-0 defeat by Brighton at Vale Park.

He made two Second Division appearances in 2002–03, both away defeats.

The teenager earned his first start on 18 October 2003, he was taken off at half-time for Ian Armstrong, as he watched his teammates lose 5-1 at home to Plymouth Argyle. He also played in both games of the club's First Round FA Cup struggle over minnows Ford United. In all he made thirteen appearances in 2003–04.

It was throughout the 2004–05 campaign that Birchall showed his potential, scoring seven goals in 39 games. His first senior goal was a 76th minute winner against Swindon Town on 19 October.[3] He also scored a brace against Tranmere Rovers on 7 December in a 3-1 home win.[4] At the end of the season he was voted the Young Player of the Year.

Birchall scored twice in 32 appearances in the 2005–06 season. However one of them, a 22nd minute winner over Bristol Rovers in the FA Cup, was enough to book the Vale a Third Round encounter with Doncaster Rovers,[5] which left the club one win away from a lucrative encounter with Aston Villa at Villa Park.

In July 2006, with the World Cup still in progress, Martin Foyle denied reports that his young midfielder would be exiting Vale Park, specifically for Ipswich Town.[6] The next month Birchall was snapped up by Micky Adams' Coventry City for a fee of £300,000 (rising to £325,000 with bonuses), signing a three year deal with the Sky Blues.[7] He scored his first Sky Blues goal against Norwich City with a 20-yard (18 m) low drive.[8] He made 28 appearances in the second tier that season.

In August 2007, Birchall signed with St Mirren on loan until January 2008.[9] However he returned to Coventry in early December, after suffering a hamstring injury.[10] He only played just two games for the Sky Blues following his return.

Not a part of Chris Coleman's plans for 2008–09, John Ward of Carlisle United expressed an interest in August 2008,[11] and had admitted speaking to the player's agent.[12] He had also been linked with a return on loan to his former club, Port Vale.[13] In November, Birchall signed for Carlisle on loan until the end of the year,[14] having taken advice from teammate Keiren Westwood.[15] When returning to Coventry, he agreed to have his contract terminated by mutual consent.[16] The midfielder also opted not to return to Carlisle, after negotiations with an unnamed American club.[17] In January 2009, Birchall joined English League One side Brighton and Hove Albion on an initial week-trial with a view to earning a contract.[18] He later signed a contract until the end of the season,[19] teaming up with his old Coventry boss Micky Adams.[20] Three months later Brighton chairman Dick Knight blocked a move to Major League Soccer club Los Angeles Galaxy, telling Birchall he would not be allowed to leave the club on a free transfer.[21] Despite this setback, Birchall seemed set on a move to the American franchise.[22] He was freed from Brighton in May 2009 - along with thirteen other professionals.[23] Later that month Birchall agreed a four-year contract with the LA Galaxy.[24] He made his official MLS debut on July 16, 2009, replacing David Beckham 70 minutes into a game against the New York Red Bulls. During the off-season he returned to Vale Park for fitness training.[25]

International career

Although born in England, Birchall has represented Trinidad and Tobago at international level. He is eligible for that country because his mother was born in Port of Spain.[26]

Birchall's agent was spreading word around that he could in fact play for his mother's homeland. He was first made aware of the interest in him by Trinidad & Tobago international central defender Dennis Lawrence, who walked over to him during a game between Port Vale and Wrexham (Lawrence's club at the time). Lawrence enquired if he was indeed eligible to play for the Soca Warriors by saying "I hear you've got some 'Trini' blood in you?".[27] Lawrence then passed Birchall's contact details onto the Trinidad and Tobago Football Federation, and Birchall was called up to the full Trinidad & Tobago squad for the World Cup qualifiers against Panama and Mexico, following a couple of friendlies against Bermuda. After making his debut for the national side, Birchall became the first white player to represent the country in sixty years.[28]

The "Prince of Port-of-Spain", West Indies cricketer Brian Lara, was also credited for helping the TTFA hear about Birchall after Ashley Giles made a comment about having some West Indian blood in his family. When asked by the press in Trinidad and Tobago why he qualified to play for them he replied "Me mum". This memorable response gave rise to his Soca Warrior nickname, ‘Me Mum’.

"At the time he joined the team he was the odd guy out but we all welcome him with open arms and he's been very much a key player to our team. He's come in and done a fantastic job and has become an influential player.
—Fellow countryman Dwight Yorke on Birchall.[29]

Undoubtedly his most important contribution to the Soca Warriors came on 12 November 2005, in their home (first) leg of their 2006 FIFA World Cup qualifying play-off against Bahrain. Bahrain's Salman Ghuloom had scored in the 72nd minute and were poised to take a 1-0 lead back home for the second leg, but five minutes later, Birchall fired in a stunning goal from well outside the penalty area to equalise. The Soca Warriors went on to win the return leg of the play-off in Bahrain 1-0 (on a goal from Lawrence) and advance to their first ever World Cup finals.

In the World Cup he played all three of the country's games; against Sweden, England and Paraguay. Playing against the likes of Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard and Wayne Rooney was a particularly special moment for the player who had spent his life living in England.

Following their return from the 2006 World Cup, each member of the Trinidad and Tobago national team was awarded the country's second highest honour, the Chaconia Medal in gold, plus TT$1,000,000 (about £87,500 (one quarter in cash, the rest in unit trusts)). He is therefore entitled to suffix his name "C.M." if he wishes.[30] Soca Warrior fans have also penned a rap song in his honour.[31]

Personal life

In 2006, Birchall and Stoke City star Andy Wilkinson invested £200,000 into Zenn Club, a nightclub in Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent. However in July 2008 the club was closed due to debts. The club later re-opened under new management.[32]

Birchall and his girlfriend, Lucy Mulroy, had their first child, Ashley Edward Birchall, on 28 April 2009.

Statistics

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Club level

Club performance League Cup League Cup Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
England League FA Cup League Cup Total
2001–02 Port Vale Second Division 1 0 0 0 1 0 2 0
2002–03 Port Vale Second Division 2 0 0 0 0 0 2 0
2003–04 Port Vale Second Division 10 0 3 0 0 0 13 0
2004–05 Port Vale League One 34 6 2 0 1 0 39 7
2005–06 Port Vale League One 31 1 3 1 1 0 35 2
2006–07 Coventry City Championship 28 2 1 0 1 0 30 2
2007–08 Coventry City Championship 1 0 1 0 1 0 3 0
2007–08 St. Mirren SPL 9 0 0 0 0 0 9 0
2008–09 Carlisle United League One 2 0 0 0 0 0 2 0
2008–09 Brighton & Hove Albion League One 9 0 0 0 0 0 10 0
2009 Los Angeles Galaxy MLS 9 0 0 0 - - 9 0
Total England 118 9 10 1 5 0 136 11
Career Total 136 9 10 1 5 0 154 11
Notes

a. Football League Trophy results included in totals.
b. FA Cup and League Cup equivalents are included in totals for Scottish and American clubs.

International level

Scores and results list Trinidad and Tobago's goal tally first.
Caps Date Venue Opponent Result Competition Scored Location
01 (00) 2005-05-25 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Bermuda 4–0 Friendly 0 Trinidad and Tobago
02 (00) 2005-05-27 Manny Ramjohn Stadium, Marabella  Bermuda 1–0 Friendly 0 Trinidad and Tobago
03 (00) 2005-06-04 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Panama 2–0 World Cup Qualifier 0 Trinidad and Tobago
04 (00) 2005-06-08 Estadio Universitario, Monterrey  Mexico 0–2 World Cup Qualifier 0 Mexico
05 (01) 2005-07-06 Orange Bowl, Miami, Florida  Honduras 1–1 CONCACAF Gold Cup 1 United States
06 (01) 2005-07-09 Orange Bowl, Miami, Florida  Panama 2–2 CONCACAF Gold Cup 0 United States
07 (01) 2005-07-11 Orange Bowl, Miami, Florida  Colombia 0–2 CONCACAF Gold Cup 0 United States
08 (01) 2005-08-17 Rentschler Field, Hartford, Connecticut  United States 0–1 World Cup Qualifier 0 United States
09 (01) 2005-09-03 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Guatemala 3–2 World Cup Qualifier 0 Trinidad and Tobago
10 (01) 2005-09-07 Estadio Ricardo Saprissa Aymá, San José  Costa Rica 0–2 World Cup Qualifier 0 Costa Rica
11 (01) 2005-10-08 Estadio Rommel Fernandez, Panama City  Panama 1–0 World Cup Qualifier 0 Panama
12 (01) 2005-10-12 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Mexico 2–1 World Cup Qualifier 0 Trinidad and Tobago
13 (02) 2005-11-12 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Bahrain 1–1 World Cup Qualifier 1 Trinidad and Tobago
14 (02) 2005-11-16 Bahrain National Stadium, Ar Rifa`  Bahrain 1–0 World Cup Qualifier 0 Bahrain
15 (02) 2006-02-28 Loftus Road, London  Iceland 2–0 Friendly 0 England
16 (02) 2006-05-10 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Peru 1–1 Friendly 0 Trinidad and Tobago
17 (02) 2006-05-27 UPC-Arena, Graz  Wales 1–2 Friendly 0 Austria
18 (03) 2006-05-31 Stade Evry-Bodnoufle, Celje  Slovenia 1–3 Friendly 1 Slovenia
19 (03) 2006-06-03 Generali Arena, Prague  Czech Republic 0–3 Friendly 0 Czech Republic
20 (03) 2006-06-10 Westfalenstadion, Dortmund  Sweden 0–0 FIFA World Cup 0 Germany
21 (03) 2006-06-15 Frankenstadion, Nuremberg  England 0–2 FIFA World Cup 0 Germany
22 (03) 2006-06-20 Fritz Walter Stadion, Kaiserslautern  Paraguay 0–2 FIFA World Cup 0 Germany
23 (04) 2006-10-07 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 5–0 Friendly 1 Trinidad and Tobago
24 (04) 2006-10-11 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Panama 2–1 Friendly 0 Trinidad and Tobago
25 (04) 2006-11-15 Ernst-Happel-Stadion, Vienna  Austria 1–4 Friendly 0 Austria
26 (04) 2008-07-30 Marvin Lee Stadium, Tunapuna  Haiti 2–0 Friendly 0 Trinidad and Tobago
27 (04) 2008-08-20 Estadio Pedro Marrero, Havana  Cuba 3–1 World Cup Qualifier 0 Cuba
28 (04) 2008-10-08 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Dominican Republic 9–0 Friendly 0 Trinidad and Tobago
29 (04) 2008-10-11 Estadio Mateo Flores, Guatemala City  Guatemala 0–0 World Cup Qualifier 0 Guatemala
30 (04) 2008-10-15 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  United States 2–1 World Cup Qualifier 0 Trinidad and Tobago
31 (04) 2008-11-19 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  Cuba 3–0 World Cup Qualifier 0 Trinidad and Tobago
32 (04) 2009-02-11 Estadio Cuscatlán, San Salvador  El Salvador 2–2 World Cup Qualifier 0 El Salvador
33 (04) 2009-04-01 LP Field, Nashville, Tennessee  United States 0–3 World Cup Qualifier 0 United States
34 (04) 2009-06-06 Dwight Yorke Stadium, Bacolet  Costa Rica 2–3 World Cup Qualifier 0 Tobago
35 (04) 2009-06-10 Estadio Azteca, Mexico City  Mexico 1–2 World Cup Qualifier 0 Mexico
36 (04) 2009-08-12 Hasely Crawford Stadium, Port of Spain  El Salvador 1–0 World Cup Qualifier 0 Trinidad and Tobago

Honours

Awards

Los Angeles Galaxy

See also

References

  1. ^ "Search 1984 to 2006 – Birth, Marriage and Death indexes". Findmypast.com. http://www.findmypast.com/post84BMDSearchStart.action?redef=0&searchType=B. Retrieved 2009-05-02. 
  2. ^ Wood, Ian (16 June 2006). "Party erupts at Birchall's local". BBC News. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/5085332.stm. Retrieved 07 December 2009. 
  3. ^ "Port Vale 1-0 Swindon". BBC Sport. 19 October, 2004. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/eng_div_2/3748942.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  4. ^ "Port Vale 3-1 Tranmere". BBC Sport. 7 December, 2004. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/eng_div_2/4068201.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  5. ^ "Bristol Rovers 0-1 Port Vale". BBC Sport. 13 December 2005. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/fa_cup/4516290.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  6. ^ "Vale dismiss Birchall 'interest'". BBC Sport. 6 July 2006. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/p/port_vale/5155178.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  7. ^ "Coventry bring in Vale's Birchall". BBC Sport. 5 August 2006. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/c/coventry_city/5249340.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  8. ^ "Coventry 3-0 Norwich". BBC Sport. 8 September 2006. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/eng_div_1/5308222.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  9. ^ "Buddies complete Birchall signing". BBC Sport. 2007-08-31. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/s/st_mirren/6972783.stm. Retrieved 2007-08-31. 
  10. ^ "Early Buddies exit for Birchall". BBC Sport. 3 December 2007. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/s/st_mirren/7126089.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  11. ^ "Carlisle admit Birchall interest". BBC Sport. 27 August 2008. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/c/carlisle_united/7583627.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  12. ^ "No signings planned at Carlisle". BBC Sport. 28 August 2008. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/c/carlisle_united/7585928.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  13. ^ "Vale look to Birchall loan deal". BBC Sport. 21 November 2008. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/p/port_vale/7741608.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  14. ^ "Carlisle sign midfielder Birchall". BBC Sport. 27 November 2008. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/c/carlisle_united/7752088.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  15. ^ "Westwood influences Birchall move". BBC Sport. 28 November 2008. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/c/carlisle_united/7754722.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  16. ^ Birchall cancels contract, CCFC.co.uk, 2 January 2008. Retrieved 5 January 2008
  17. ^ "Carlisle lose Birchall to US move". BBC Sport. 31 December 2008. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/c/carlisle_united/7805829.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  18. ^ "Birchall on Trial with Albion". seagulls.co.uk. 05 January 2009. http://www.seagulls.co.uk/page/Latest/0,,10433~1509570,00.html. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  19. ^ Dudding, Tim (16 January 2009). "Albion Sign Birchall". seagulls.co.uk. http://www.seagulls.co.uk/page/Latest/0,,10433~1521998,00.html. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  20. ^ "Birchall earns Brighton contract". BBC Sport. 16 January 2009. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/b/brighton/7828422.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  21. ^ "Brighton block Birchall MLS move". BBC Sport. 11 April 2009. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/b/brighton/7989237.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  22. ^ "Birchall to join Beckham in LA". BBC Sport. 10 May 2009. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/b/brighton/8042385.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  23. ^ "Fourteen let go in Brighton cull". BBC Sport. 12 May 2009. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/teams/b/brighton/8046243.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  24. ^ "Birchall agrees to Galaxy deal". socawarriors.net. 25 May 2009. http://www.socawarriors.net/foreign-based/5534-birchall-agrees-to-galaxy-deal.html. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  25. ^ Shaw, Steve (December 02, 2009). "Port Vale: Win puts us at crossroads – Adams". The Sentinel. http://www.thisisstaffordshire.co.uk/news/Port-Vale-Win-puts-crossroads-8211-Adams/article-1567222-detail/article.html. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  26. ^ "World Cup unknowns". BBC Sport. 20 February 2006. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/internationals/4442898.stm. Retrieved 07 December 2009. 
  27. ^ "Quotes of the week". BBC Sport. 15 November 2005. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/funny_old_game/4435384.stm. Retrieved 2008-12-28. 
  28. ^ Mitchener, Mark (30 April 2006). "From Burslem to Dortmund". BBC Sport. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/world_cup_2006/4918836.stm. Retrieved 07 December 2009. 
  29. ^ "Yorke hails influence of Birchall". BBC Sport. 1 June 2006. http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/football/world_cup_2006/teams/trinidad_and_tobago/5036580.stm. Retrieved 07 December 2009. 
  30. ^ "Birchall and Bell up for award". BBC Coventry and Warwickshire. 21/11/06. http://www.bbc.co.uk/coventry/content/articles/2006/11/13/midlands_sports_awards_feature.shtml. Retrieved 07 December 2009. 
  31. ^ "10 famous Britons you've probably never heard of". BBC Magazine. 3 August 2009. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/8172542.stm. Retrieved 06 December 2009. 
  32. ^ "Football stars lose as Zenn club in Hanley collapses". The Sentinel. July 21, 2008. http://www.thisisstaffordshire.co.uk/news/article-228450-details/article.html. Retrieved 2009-06-26. 

External links


Simple English

Chris Birchall
Personal information
Full name Christopher Birchall
Date of birth 5 May 1984 (1984-05-05) (age 26)
Place of birth    Stafford, England
Height 1.75 m (5 ft 9 in)
Playing position Midfielder
Club information
Current club Los Angeles Galaxy
Number 11
Senior clubs
Years Club
2001-2006
2006-2008
2007
2008
2009
2009-
Port Vale
Coventry City
St. Mirren (loan)
Carlisle United (loan)
Brighton & Hove Albion
Los Angeles Galaxy
National team
2005-2009 Trinidad and Tobago

Chris Birchall (born 5 May 1984) is a Trinidad and Tobago football player. He plays for Los Angeles Galaxy and Trinidad and Tobago national team.

Club career statistics

Club Performance League CupLeague CupTotal
SeasonClubLeague AppsGoals AppsGoalsAppsGoalsAppsGoals
EnglandLeague FA Cup Football League CupTotal
2001/02Port ValeSecond Division10001020
2002/0320000020
2003/041003000130
2004/05League One3462010376
2005/063113110352
2006/07Coventry CityLeague Championship2821010302
ScotlandLeague Scottish Cup Scottish League CupTotal
2007/08St. MirrenPremier League90000090
EnglandLeague FA Cup Football League CupTotal
2007/08Coventry CityLeague Championship10101030
2008/09Carlisle UnitedLeague One20000020
2008/09Brighton & Hove AlbionLeague One90000090
United StatesLeague Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup League CupTotal
2009Los Angeles GalaxyMajor League Soccer9000-90
2010
CountryEngland 11891015013310
Scotland 90000090
United States 9000-90
Total 13691015015110

International career statistics

[1]

Trinidad and Tobago national team
YearAppsGoals
2005142
2006112
200700
200860
200950
Total364

References


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