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Matt Jackson

Matt Jackson
Norwich Career: 1996-2001 (172 appearances, 6 goals)
Current Club: Wigan Athletic (Operations Officer)
Date of Birth: 23/12/1966 
Nationality: English

Biography

Mike Walker's first signing upon his return to Carrow Road was Matt Jackson for whom he paid Everton £450,000 in December 1996. He bolstered the Norwich defence that had just conceded 5 at West Brom and 6 at Port Vale.

Matt was originally with Luton where he made just 9 appearances (plus 4 on loan to Preston) when Everton signed him for £600,000. He made 138 league appearances for the Toffees until Joe Royle arrived. He spent time on loan to Charlton, QPR and Birmingham and was expected to join the latter until the Canaries made him a better offer. He was quickly appointed as club captain.

On 28th July 2000 Sheffield Wednesday boss Paul Jewell submitted a 500,000 bid for the Norwich skipper. This was immediately rejected by the Norwich board. Failure to agree a new contract saw Matt officially placed on the transfer list on February 12th 2001 although he was to remain as captain. Birmingham and Sheffield Wednesday were said to be keen although their signings of Peter Atherton and Carl Tiler might sate their need for new central defenders. On 27th February 2001, Matt signed a new 2year contract with the Canaries which was a compromise between the 3 years he wanted and the year Norwich were prepared to offer. Despite this, Matt was allowed by the club to talk with Birmingham City on Transfer Deadline Day although no deal was arranged. He then was surprisingly absent from the clash with Grimsby on 31st March 2001.

In July 2001, Nigel Worthington announced that in order to slash the club's wage bill, Jackson was available for (free) transfer, additionally stripping him of his captaincy. Luton, Cambridge, Wycombe and Grimsby have all made enquiries but Jackson wants a move to a bigger Division One side with Forest, Sheffield Wednesday and Birmingham said to be interested. In the week preceding the start of the new football season, reports circulated in the media that Preston were interested in signing Jackson as defensive cover. The following week saw Portsmouth linked with Norwich's former skipper. Division Two's big spenders Cardiff City were also linked with Jackson but he seemed likely to return to Luton after agreeing to join Joe Kinnear's side. Wages at the Division Three side were not said to be a problem but Jackson wanted to be paid for the remainder of his contract with Norwich. Norwich replied that Jackson had been given the free transfer on condition that he did not seek his wages. At the time of writing, the situation was in stalemate but that Jackson was on the bench for the trip to Gillingham on 13th October 2001. Amazingly, by the end of the following week, Matt had joined Division Two strugglers Wigan Athletic on loan for a month.

Matt completed a free transfer move to Wigan on 20th November 2001. In April 2003, Wigan were promoted to Division One where Matt will face his former teammates. In February 2004, he was linked by the media with a move to QPR and three months later, was linked by the Sunday People with a free transfer move to Derby. Instead Matt stayed and helped and indeed captained Wigan as they rose from Division One into the Premiership. He made 191 appearances for them, 84 as captain.

On 24th May 2007, Matt joined Aidy Boothroyd's Watford after he rejected a one-year contract at the JJB Stadium. Boothroyd said he had signed him as cover for Jay DeMerit, who is expected to be on international duty for the USA next season. "Signing Matt gives us a player with calmness and an ability to manage the game," Boothroyd told the club website.

Jackson joined Blackpool on loan in October 2007 but was recalled after three matches due to a calf injury for DeMerit

On 7th August 2008, Matt announced his retirement having made 550 appearances and 16 goals in his 17-year career. He currently works for IMG (International Management Group)

In the summer of 2011, Matt managed a couple of youthful Wigan XI sides and is working for Wigan as an Operations Manager.


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