Thursday, 19 May 2011

393 Adam Le Fondre

Position : Forward

Played : 2006-07  ( on  loan  from  Stockport ) ; 2007-08  to  2009-10

Appearances : ( first spell ) 7  ; ( second spell )  91

Goals : ( first spell ) 4 ; ( second spell ) 34

Adam also made his debut in the game against MK Dons. Despite the exotic surname, “Alfie” was born in Stockport and they were his only previous team. He had made 67 appearances (some of them in midfield) scoring 19 goals but despite scoring 4 against Wrexham in September he couldn’t command a regular place in the starting line-up and came to us for first team football.

Adam started as he meant to go on by almost scoring with his first touch, a header that the keeper made a good save to keep out. Four minutes later he ran on to a long ball from the back and tucked it away. He got another in the second half and he was an instant crowd favourite. Alfie got two more goals in his loan spell before returning to Stockport in time to come on against us in March.

In the summer Keith Hill returned for him and he signed for £40,000. I’ve pretty much told Alfie’s story already in the Chris Dagnall post. When both were fit they were sometimes played together , to limited effect, but usually they were alternated. Alfie wasn’t as tidy a footballer as Chris but a superior finisher. He was the ultimate impact sub and his habit of coming up with last minute winners has left some abiding memories especially the one away at Bradford in January 2008 when I got half-strangled in the celebrations. Despite his poaching abilities Alfie was intelligent enough to take the ball out wide and play someone else in if the shot wasn’t on and that aspect of his game was under-rated. The only downside was his reputation as a diver which meant referees didn’t always give him the benefit of the doubt.

Adam got a hat-trick against Accrington in March 2008 and Barnet in the Cup the following November and finished top scorer in both his full seasons at the club. He started the 2009-10 season but made just one last appearance as a sub at Port Vale before moving to Rotherham with a hefty tax bill looming. That we managed to go on and prosper after losing such a valuable player is just another remarkable aspect of our promotion season.

Adam has been a massive success at Rotherham scoring 50 goals in 91 appearances and is widely expected to move on at the time of writing.

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