Lincoln City FC
 

 

Gareth Ainsworth Gareth Ainsworth
(1995/96-1997/98)

Full Name: Ainsworth, Gareth
Date Of Birth : 10/05/1973
Birthplace : Blackburn

LCFC career record :
Apps : 97 ; Subs : 0 ; Goals : 41


LCFC Football League record :
Apps : 83 ; Subs : 0 ; Goals : 37

LCFC Debut : 01/11/1995, Mansfield Town (a) 2-1, FL Division 3
Last Match : 10/09/1997, Rotherham United (a) 1-3, FL Division 3



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Untitled

An attacking right-sided player, Gareth Ainsworth joined home town team Blackburn Rovers straight from school and although he never got as far as the first team, he gained plenty of experience and was one of just two trainees from his year to be taken on as professionals, the other being Peter Thorne who would go on score regularly for the likes of Stoke and Cardiff.

After a brief spell on loan with non-League Northwich Victoria, Gareth joined Preston North End in January 1992, making his Football League debut on the right wing at Shrewsbury Town. A move to John Beck’s Cambridge United followed before he played for Beck at Preston for a three-year spell.

He made 82 League appearances and scored a dozen goals in that time before the Imps - and Beck again - came calling.

Gareth joined City for a five-figure fee and made his debut at Mansfield on November 1st 1995. The game at Field Mill was Beck’s third in charge of the Imps and it resulted in City picking up their first win since the opening game of the season. Gareth’s whole-hearted showing in that game certainly gave Imps’ fans a sign of things to come. He would go on to miss just one League for City until his departure in September 1997.

He also showed City followers that he knew where the back of the net was and followed up his 12 goals in his first season by finishing the 1996/97 season as top scorer with a more than impressive 22 from the right-wing.

Describing his two years at Lincoln as the “best times” of his career, Gareth continued to impress and his never-say-die attitude eventually earned him a big money move to Port Vale, who shelled out the best part of £500,000 for his services. His last goals for the Imps came in the form of his only hat-trick, this coming in a 3-3 home draw with Scarborough.

Scoring on his Vale debut, Gareth spent a year at Vale Park before Premiership side Wimbledon forked out £2m for his signature but a number of injuries restricted his appearances with the Dons to just 36 in five seasons whilst he also had brief loan spells with Preston (again) and Walsall.

A brief spell with Cardiff City followed before he was released at the end of the 2002/03 season and in the summer of 2003 he moved back to London and Queens Park Rangers. Injuries continued to restrict his first team outings, although he was a regular in the Hoops’ 2005/06 season, whilst he was also starting to entertain off the pitch, being the lead singer for a London-based rock band.

Both his football and music were put on a temporary halt, however, in April 2007 with a broken fibula sustained in a game against Luton Town put him back on the sidelines. He returned, though, and in May 2008 accepted a player coach role at QPR and following the dismissal of Iain Dowie five months later Gareth was appointed caretaker manager. He remained on the club's coaching staff after Paulo Sousa was appointed as first-team coach the following month.

SEASON RECORD

1995/1996
1996/1997
1997/1998

Untitled

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