Stewart Downing


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1984 (36 years old)

Birth Place
Middlesbrough, England


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5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)






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Stewart Downing (born 22 July 1984) is an English professional footballer who plays for Championship club Blackburn Rovers.
He has played most of his career as a winger, where he operates predominantly on the left-hand side, though he can play on the right and go inside on to his stronger left foot. Downing has also played in the left-back position and more recently as an attacking central midfielder.

He was formed at Middlesbrough, where after a loan at Sunderland, he became a key part of the team, winning the League Cup in 2004 and helping them to the UEFA Cup final two years later. In 2009, after Boro's relegation, he joined Aston Villa for an initial £10 million, then moved on to Liverpool for twice that amount two years later, again winning the League Cup in 2012. He played for two seasons at West Ham United before returning to Middlesbrough.

A full international since 2005, Downing has earned 35 caps for England. He was included in the nation's squads that reached the quarter-finals at the 2006 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 2012.

Downing was born in Middlesbrough, and was a graduate of the Middlesbrough Academy. His debut came on 24 April 2002 in a Premier League game away at Ipswich Town, playing the full 90 minutes of a 1–0 loss at Portman Road. He was limited to just three appearances during that season, plus a further three the following season. His first senior goal came on 1 October 2002 in a 4–1 League Cup second round away victory over Brentford, coming on as a substitute to conclude the scoring at Griffin Park.

On 30 October 2003, Downing went on a one-month loan to Sunderland, of the Championship. He scored three goals in seven games for Mick McCarthy's Black Cats team, starting on 4 November when he equalised in a 3–1 win at Gillingham, also assisting John Oster. Having scored as many goals on his loan as Middlesbrough's top scorer Szilárd Németh had recorded all season, Downing was recalled from his loan on 11 December due to injury to Juninho. He was a regular for the remainder of the season, but was an unused substitute on 29 February 2004, when they won the League Cup final against Bolton Wanderers.

The 2004–05 season saw Downing make 49 appearances, scoring six goals, as well as providing numerous assists. In a UEFA Cup match against Lazio in November 2004, both Downing and Zenden were in the starting line-up. Though Zenden scored both goals in the 2–0 victory, Downing drew praise for his performance down the left. Such performances that season saw him called up to Sven-Göran Eriksson's England squad in February 2005 for a friendly against the Netherlands.

A knee injury saw Downing sidelined for five months at the end of 2005, though he returned to play his part in the run to the 2006 UEFA Cup Final, including three assists in the 4–2 (4–3 agg) victory over Steaua Bucharest in the semi-final second leg.

On 26 February 2008, Downing signed a new five-year contract, keeping him signed on at Middlesbrough until summer 2013. With the departure of Mark Schwarzer in May 2008, Downing became Middlesbrough's second longest serving player after Brad Jones.

The 2008–09 season was a mixed one for Downing. Middlesbrough had their best start to the season in six years which saw them climb to 8th in the table, however, a terrible winless run which started in November 2008 saw them fall into the relegation zone. On 5 January 2009, he handed in a written transfer request expressing his desire to leave the club but the request was turned down on the same day. In the penultimate match of the season, he sustained a foot injury after a challenge from Stiliyan Petrov in a home game against Aston Villa in May, which needed an operation, ruling him out for at least four months. After spending the whole of the second half of the season in the relegation zone, Middlesbrough were relegated on the final day after they lost 2–1 away at West Ham United. Downing, having started every league game, except the last match, ended the season with no league goals, having only scored two against West Ham United in the FA Cup.

Season Stats
2 appearances in the current 2020-2021 Season

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