Who Was Michael Gordon?

Credit Graham Burrell

I did a quiz on Imps who appeared during the 2009/10 season earlier and got asked by several people who Michael Gordon was.

Well, as a helpful site owner (and somebody building up a handy database of former players for you to get lost in) I have made it my duty to deliver those obscure players to you. So, without further ado, this is Michael Gordon.

Gordon was born on November 10, 1984, serving his apprenticeship on the books of Arsenal and appearing for England Under 15s. Sadly, it didn’t work out for him at Highbury and he was released in 2002, moving to a ‘pre-MK Dons’ Wimbledon in the Championship, then called Division One. He made his debut as a substitute as they went down 2-0 to Derby in April 2003, replacing Patrick Agyemang. In August 2003, he made his first Football League start as the Dons beat Crewe 3-1 at Selhurst Park.

He went on to appear 20 more times for the Dons, starting eight matches on the right-wing, but without scoring a goal. At the end of the season, one in which Wimbledon lost 35 of their 50 games in league and cup, he left the club. They were relocated to Milton Keynes, he relocated to Swindon Town. Ironically, his final appearance for the Dons saw him come on as a sub at the same time as another future Imp connected with a dismal season, Albert Jarrett.

He didn’t get a game at Swindon, and swiftly he dropped out of the Football League. Between 2005 and 2007 he appeared for Havant and Waterlooville, Aldershot Town, Crawley Town, Sutton United, AFC Wimbledon, Harrow Borough, Hemel Hempstead Town and Northwood, where he finally settled. He spent two seasons at Acretweed Stadium before heading to the Ryman League Division One South with Merstham, via Croydon. Gordon certainly embarked on a non-league odyssey, with league football looking like a distant memory. He hit a bit of form in South London, bagging seven goals and an assist in 16 matches. That form brought him to the attention of the Imps, who offered a two-week trial. He impressed enough to get a deal until the end of the season, signing on his 25th birthday.

Chris Sutton signed Michael Gordon – Courtesy of Graham Burrell

Upon signing for City, manager Chris Sutton rather optimistically described Gordon as; “an out and out right-winger. He’s direct, he runs at people and from what we’ve seen he’ll create opportunities for others.” He didn’t.

His debut was eventful, to say the least. He started on the right-wing as soon as he arrived, playing 90 minutes as we drew 1-1 with Cheltenham in a heated encounter. Aaron Brown was sent off, with the two benches clashing too. Ian Pearce saw red, Barry Richardson also walked for the visitors and their manager John Schofield described the melee as things getting ‘very crowded in their technical area’. Jamie Clarke’s goal got us a point.

Gordon appeared as we drew 0-0 with Grimsby in a tedious and action-starved encounter, and again as we went down 2-0 at Rotherham, missing the FA Cup victory at Northwich Victoria. His last start for the club came as we lost 2-1 at home to Port Vale on Delroy Facey’s debut, a game I remember watching from a virtually empty Stacey West stand. That was the opening day of December and Gordon wasn’t seen again on the field, for months. He made the next three matchday squads, but didn’t get on, before finding himself out in the cold. He was intermittently on the bench, but despite being seen regularly warming up on the touchline he couldn’t get a game.

He did make one more appearance for the Imps, replacing Matthew Saunders for 14 minutes as we lost 3-1 at Notts County. There was a certain irony to that game, Delroy Facey had returned to his parent club and scored against us. We played 74 minutes with ten men following Moses Swaibu’s sending off, Steven Lennon having cancelled out Lee Hughes’ opener. Graeme Lee added a second on 65 minutes, Gordon came on and The Magpies made it 3-1.

Gordon sat on the bench for two further fixtures, away at Shrewsbury and home to Bury, before being released by the club. He immediately drifted out of the Football League, playing for Kingstonian and having two spells with Waltam and Hersham either side of a stint with Chipstead.

There you go, there is now no excuse for not knowing who Michael Gordon is and if you haven’t already taken our quiz, there’s an answer already in the bag.

You can find Gordon listed here, amongst the new menu featuring articles on former City players.