Leeds United F.C. History
Leeds United F.C. History : Foreword
1919-29 - The Twenties
1930-39 - The Thirties
1939-46 - The War Years
1947-49 - Post War Depression
1949-57 - The Reign of King John
1957-63 - From Charles to Revie
1961-75 - The Revie Years
1975-82 - The Downward Spiral
1982-88 - The Dark Years
1988-96 - The Wilko Years
1996-04 - The Rollercoaster Ride
2004-17 - Down Among The Deadmen
100 Greatest LUFC Players Ever
Greatest Leeds United Games
Players' Profiles
Managers' Profiles
Leeds City F.C. History
Leeds City F.C. Player and Manager Profiles
Leeds United/City Statistics
Leeds United/City Captains
Leeds United/City Friendlies and Other Games
Leeds United/City Reserves and Other Teams

Bridges: Michael

1999-2004 (Leeds Player Details)(Player Details)

Centre Forward

Born: South Shields: 05-08-1978

Debut v Derby County (h): 07-08-1999

61 12st 5lb (2005)

#55 in 100 Greatest LUFC Players Ever

Bridges joined Sunderland on 9th November 1995 and after being capped by England at Schoolboy and Youth level went on to gain three caps at Under-Twenty-One level before his career was blighted by injury. He was still only eighteen when he broke into the Sunderland team and he went on to score sixteen goals in thirty-one starts and forty-eight games from the bench in the League, played twice in the F.A. Cup without scoring and managed five goals in eight starts and three substitute appearances in the League Cup. He signed for Leeds United in a 5 million deal on 29th July 1999, after growing frustrated with his inability to break into the first team ahead of Niall Quinn and Kevin Phillips. He quickly established himself as a fans' favourite at Elland Road with a hat-trick in only his second appearance in a Leeds Shirt. The young striker, a native of the North East, was determined to join Leeds United because of David O'Leary's youth policy, ironically turning down a move to link up with former Leeds boss, George Graham, at Tottenham Hotspur. He was soon turning in some impressive performances, and proved a vital addition to the squad with his ability to hold the ball up and deceptive turn of pace. Bridges went on to score over twenty goals in his first season at Elland Road and was a key player for Leeds in their European campaign. His reward was to become a regular in the England Under-Twenty-One squad, and started the opening match of the European Championships against Slovakia. Injury robbed Bridges of taking part in Leeds' historic Champions League run in 2000-01, and he was once again out of most of 2001-02, but made his comeback in Gary Kelly's testimonial in May 2002. Bridges played in nine games at the start of the 2002-03 season but injury was once again to force him to sit on the sidelines. He managed a few more appearances in 2003-04, and in February 2004 he joined Newcastle United on loan for three months, making six appearances as a substitute. After that loan ended he returned to Elland Road, but only briefly, as he signed for Bolton Wanderers in June 2004, where he hoped to have better fortune in his search for regular football. Before he could make an appearance for Bolton though, he was loaned out back to Sunderland. In a three month spell he impressed sufficiently to earn himself a permanent contract, and in December 2004, the deal was done. After scoring once in five starts and fourteen substitute appearances he was not retained, and, in July 2005, he moved on a free transfer to Bristol City. He failed to score in eleven League games, seven of which were as a substitute, but did score in one substitute appearance in the League Cup, but as he could not cement a place, he was loaned to Carlisle United in November 2005. He soon established himself and signed for them permanently on a free transfer in January 2006. He found his scoring touch with ten goals in fifteen games and two substitute appearances and totalled fifteen goals in twenty-nine starts and two games from the bench in the League and one goalless substitute appearance in the League Cup. He then left for Hull City on 31st August 2006 for 350,000 on a three year contract, but once again he failed to cement a first team spot and was loan out to Sydney FC in the A-League for six months in October 2007, where he scored twice in nine appearances, before he returned. Hull were duly promoted to the EPL and in July 2008 Bridges was loaned out to Carlisle for a year. He scored seven times in twelve starts and eighteen games from the bench in the League, one substitute appearance without scoring in the F.A. Cup, one start and one game from the bench without scoring in the League Cup and one goal in his only appearance in the Johnstone's Paints Trophy. When his contract with Hull City ran out in June 2009, he had scored twice in nine starts and thirteen games from the bench in the League and had scored once in two appearances in the League Cup. He had an unsuccessful trial with Norwich City before signing with MK Dons on 5th August 2009. He did not stay long with the Dons, making only two appearances, one in the League and one in the League Cup, and returned to Australia to sign for the Newcastle Jets in a contract that ran to 30th September 2010. He scored six goals in fifteen appearances in his first season with the Jets. In December 2009 his contract was extended to December 2011. On 22nd July 2010 Bridges was made Captain of Newcastle Jets. He scored once in seven starts for Newcastle in the 2010-11 season. Bridges announced his retirement 29th April 2011. The former Newcastle Jets Captain who was immensely popular with his peers and club management was not lost to the Newcastle Jets after accepting a position with the club, as International Football & Business Development Manager. Bridges will share his time with the Jets Commercial team and involving his passion and knowledge for the game by working with the soon to be established Jets Academy to develop and enhance the junior talent in the region.

AppearancesGoals
League 40/1619
F.A. Cup 1/10
League Cup 3/20
Europe 17/22