Yesterday was horrendous, Morecambe away is up there as one of the worst away days I've ever been on, (Report out this evening) and to pretend it didn't happen I've occupied myself by writing another advent calendar piece. It's another old school one, and one I've been looking forward to for a while now. A goal scoring centre back from my golden era of supporting the club. It's 'Me Lord' himself, Elliott Ward.
Micky Adams signed him for 1 million pounds, we'd kill to be able to buy a player for that sort of money nowadays, as we haven't done for a number of years. It looked to be a good buy as we got a good young talent who would be a brilliant presence in our defence. He'd impressed in West Ham's youth side as well as on loan at Plymouth Argyle in the same division as us so it looked like a no brainer to bring him in.
For his first three years he was one of the first names on the team sheet, and was part of the golden generation of great young talent which Chris Coleman somehow failed to get anywhere near to promotion. He was the designated penalty taker and there are various clips on YouTube of him rifling spot kicks in against whoever is in front of him. My personal favourite was the on against Leicester in February 2008 when we beat them 2-0. You can understand why.
He went on to make 129 appearances in all competitions and scored 16 goals, 10 of which came from the penalty spot. I may be making this fact up but I don't remember him missing one, but I'll almost certainly be corrected by someone who reads this. Unfortunately, he started to fall down the pecking order so at the end of the 09/10 season he was released. Norwich picked him up and he was a main figure in the side that got promoted in the 2010/11 season.
In what is quite a shame, he never got a taste of consistent Premier League football due to picking up an injury, when he came back he was loaned out to Nottingham Forest. Since then he's turned out Huddersfield, Bournemouth, and now plies his trade for Blackburn. We could do with an experienced head in the defence, especially if the rumours are true and one of our pairing does leave. He's not first choice in Lancashire you never know...