Mullins with Birmingham City during pre-season in 2012
|Full name||Hayden Ian Mullins|
|Date of birth||27 March 1979|
|Place of birth||Reading, England|
|Height||6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)|
|Colchester United (head coach)|
|2003||→ West Ham United (loan)||1||(0)|
|2003–2009||West Ham United||179||(4)|
|2012||→ Reading (loan)||7||(0)|
|2014||→ Notts County (loan)||16||(1)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
Hayden Ian Mullins (born 27 March 1979) is an English former professional footballer and current manager. He played primarily as a defensive midfielder, but he also played as a sweeper and at right-back. He is currently head coach at EFL League Two club Colchester United.
Mullins began his career with First Division side Crystal Palace in 1996, and signed his first professional contract with the club in 1998. He quickly established himself in the first team, and made 257 senior appearances for Palace in five seasons. In October 2003, he switched to First Division side West Ham United, initially on a short-term loan, which quickly turned into a permanent transfer. He remained at the club for five-and-a-half years, making 213 appearances, before joining Premier League side Portsmouth in January 2009. He made 129 appearances for Portsmouth, but the club's financial difficulties meant that he joined Championship side Reading on loan in March 2012. At the end of the 2011–12 season, Mullins left Portsmouth, and joined Birmingham City on a free transfer. After two years, during which he also spent time on loan at Notts County, Birmingham confirmed he would be released when his contract expired at the end of the 2013–14 season.
Mullins made three appearances for the England under-21 squad in 1999. After retiring, he became under-23 manager of Watford in 2016, and was twice their interim manager.
Mullins was born in Reading, Berkshire. [ citation needed ] Mullins later acknowledged his debt to Venables, saying, "I learnt a lot from him. He took a lot of time with us on the training pitch. He taught us a lot about shape and formation, he's very detailed in that respect. He's very good man on man, he made me feel totally comfortable he didn't pressure me into it at all."He joined Crystal Palace as a trainee in August 1996, and made his first-team debut in July 1998, at the age of 19, in the 1998 UEFA Intertoto Cup matches against Turkish club Samsunspor. Head coach Terry Venables gave him his domestic debut in a 3–3 draw against Bolton Wanderers in August 1998, and he scored his first senior goal in a 3–1 away defeat to Birmingham City a week later. He immediately established himself in the first team, made 45 league and cup appearances in the 1998–99 season, was named Player of The Year, and was capped for the England under-18 team.
Financial difficulties meant that Crystal Palace were unable to make new signings for the 1999–2000 season and relied on youngsters such as Mullins and Clinton Morrison and veterans such as Andy Linighan as they successfully battled against relegation from the First Division.Mullins made 49 league and cup appearances in that season and a further 51 appearances in the 2000–01 season as Palace reached the semi-final of the League Cup, but narrowly escaped relegation. He was transfer listed in October 2000, due to what manager Alan Smith described as a "bad attitude", but was taken off the list and was offered and signed a new four-year contract two months later as his relationship with Smith improved. Smith said of him in January 2001, "He's a really good footballer which means I can play him in any position. I like my young players to play in different positions. This season he's played full-back, midfield and sweeper. [We've] got to work on his defending, but he's got pace, he has good vision and he wants to play football."
Mullins made a total of 47 appearances in league and cup in the 2001–02 season as Palace made an ultimately unsuccessful push for the First Division play-off places.He was made captain in the 2002–03 season by manager Trevor Francis, who saw him as an integral part of the squad. He made 52 league and cup appearances as Palace advanced to the quarter-final of the League Cup, as well as recording a memorable 2–0 win over Liverpool in an FA Cup fourth round replay at Anfield. He was named Player of The Year for a second time in 2003.
An offer of £600,000 from Birmingham City in January 2003 was rejected as "derisory". With one year remaining on his existing contract, Mullins turned down the offer of a new contract in May. His agent said, "It is no secret that Hayden believes he will not be able to fulfil his true potential at Palace. If the club wishes to get some financial reward for their role in his up bringing, then they need to sell him this summer."The following October, he joined West Ham United. Mullins made over 250 league and cup appearances for Palace, scoring 20 goals.
Mullins was the first signing for West Ham's newly appointed manager, Alan Pardew, and initially joined on a short-term loan to enable him to play against Nottingham Forest on the same day.The deal was made permanent a day later for a fee of £600,000, rising to £800,000 should West Ham be promoted. Pardew said of him, "...I have captured a player that I feel is going to add significantly to us. [He] can play in various positions and give us cover in a number of those [...] I think ultimately he is a central midfield player for us and I think his energy will be important; he will have to battle in the midfield. He is someone we are going to look to when we are up against it, to win the battle and give the room to [other players] to play. He is very much a destroyer and I think we are desperate for one of those."
Mullins made 34 league and cup appearances in his first season for West Ham, helping them to the First Division play-off final in May 2004, where they were beaten by a single goal to nil by Mullins' former club Crystal Palace.The following season, Mullins made 45 league and cup appearances as West Ham again reached the play-off final, this time beating Preston North End 1–0 to win promotion to the Premier League.
West Ham exceeded expectations in the 2005–06 season, finishing in a mid-table position and reaching the FA Cup Final, which was won by Liverpool 3–1 on penalties.Mullins, having made 42 appearances in that season, was suspended for the final along with Liverpool's Luis García, after the pair had been sent off in a league fixture a few weeks earlier and an appeal against his dismissal was rejected by the Football Association. Pardew said, "I feel very aggrieved and very upset because Hayden has had a fantastic season. He has been one of our best players. He was my first signing here, I'm very proud of him, of what he has done and achieved."
At the beginning of the 2006–07 season, West Ham completed the signing of Argentine international Javier Mascherano who, like Mullins, was a defensive midfielder.However, after a brief period on the bench, Mullins re-established himself in the first team and scored the winning goal, in a 2–1 home win over Blackburn Rovers in October 2006, which put an end to the worst run of results for West Ham in 74 years.
Mullins made 32 league and cup appearances in the 2006–07 season as West Ham narrowly escaped relegation.On 1 November 2008, he scored his first league goal of the season in a 1–1 draw against Middlesbrough at the Riverside Stadium. It was his first league goal for two years.
Mullins made a total of 213 appearances for West Ham United, netting seven goals.
On 25 January 2009, Mullins joined Portsmouth on a three-and-a-half-year contract.He started the 2010 FA Cup Final in an unfamiliar left-back role as Portsmouth were narrowly beaten 1–0 by Chelsea.
Portsmouth were relegated at the end of the season, but Mullins stayed at the Fratton Park side and took number 8 for the 2010–11 season after captain Marc Wilson was given number 6. He scored his first goal for the club in a 3–1 win over Bristol City on 28 September 2010.He was voted Portsmouth Player of the Season for the 2010–11 season.
On 15 March 2012, Mullins signed for Reading on loan for the 2011–12 season.He made seven appearances for Reading as they were promoted to the Premier League.
On 12 July 2012, Mullins signed for Birmingham City on a two-year contract on a free transfer.He made his debut in the League Cup first round against Barnet, and kept his place for the opening match of the 2012–13 season, a 1–1 draw at home to Charlton Athletic. He scored his first goal for Birmingham in a 2–2 draw with Nottingham Forest on 15 September.
On 31 January 2014, Mullins joined Notts County on loan until the end of the 2013–14 season.He made his debut the next day as a second-half substitute as County lost 2–0 away to Preston North End. With one match of County's season remaining, Mullins was recalled by Birmingham to cover for the injured Tom Thorpe. Playing at centre back, he made a crucial clearance in the final game, away at Bolton Wanderers, that contributed to Birmingham City retaining their Championship status via Paul Caddis' stoppage-time equaliser. Birmingham confirmed he would be released when his contract expired at the end of the 2013–14 season. He finished his Birmingham career having scored twice in 39 appearances in all competitions.
On 5 June 2014, Mullins rejoined Notts County on a one-year contract.
Mullins made three appearances for the England under-21 team in 1999, against Poland in March, Hungary in April and Bulgaria in June.
After retiring as a player, Mullins joined Reading in a role that saw him oversee the development of the club's players who were out on loan.In July 2016, he joined Watford as assistant to under-21 coach Harry Kewell, later progressing to management of the under-23 team. In December 2019, Mullins was named as temporary manager of Watford after Quique Sánchez Flores was sacked. He managed two games as interim manager; a 2–0 away defeat by Leicester City and a goalless draw at home to Crystal Palace. Mullins took charge against Crystal Palace while newly appointed manager, Nigel Pearson watched from the stands.
In July 2020, he was again placed in temporary charge following the dismissal of manager Pearson.His first game in charge following Pearson's dismissal resulted in a 0–4 defeat to Manchester City. This result, coupled with Aston Villa's win later the same day, dropped Watford into 18th place in the league and a relegation position. Watford were relegated to the Championship on the last day of the season following a 3–2 defeat by Arsenal. On 1 September 2020 he left the club.
On 3 September 2020, Mullins was announced as assistant head coach to Steve Ball at Colchester United.In February 2021, Ball was replaced by Wayne Brown as first team coach. After a run of poor results, Brown was in-turn replaced by Mullins on 31 March 2021. On 13 May 2021, Mullins was appointed head coach of Colchester on a permanent basis.
|Club||Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Other||Total|
|Crystal Palace||1998–99||First Division||40||5||1||0||4||0||2||0||47||5|
|West Ham United||2003–04||First Division||27||0||4||1||—||3||0||34||1|
|Notts County (loan)||2013–14||League One||16||1||—||—||—||16||1|
|Notts County||2014–15||League One||32||0||1||0||1||0||1||0||35||0|
|Watford (caretaker)||2 December 2019||7 December 2019||2||0||1||1||0.0||[ failed verification ]|
|19 July 2020||26 July 2020||2||0||0||2||0.0|
|Colchester United||31 March 2021||18||5||7||6||27.8|
Papa Bouba Diop was a Senegalese professional footballer. His preferred position was defensive midfield but he could also play as a centre back, where he previously played at Lens. Diop was considered a strong and aggressive player. His playing style and ability drew comparisons to Patrick Vieira.
Andrew Johnson is an English former professional footballer who played as a striker. He played for Birmingham City, Crystal Palace, Everton, Fulham and Queens Park Rangers. He was capped eight times for England. As of March 2016, Johnson was working at Crystal Palace as a club ambassador.
Matthew James Upson is an English former professional footballer who played as a centre back. Upson played for England at full international level including at the 2010 World Cup.
Martin Taylor is an English retired footballer who played as a defender.
Glen McLeod Cooper Johnson is an English former professional footballer who played predominantly as a right back.
Lee David Bowyer is an English football manager and former player. He is currently the head coach of EFL Championship club Birmingham City.
James Oliver Vaughan is an English former professional footballer who played as a forward.
Joel Joshua Frederick Melvin "Jobi" McAnuff is a former footballer who was recently a player and manager at EFL League Two club Leyton Orient. He was predominantly a winger but he has also played as an occasional central midfielder.
Christopher George Robin Powell is an English football coach and former player, who is currently the assistant manager at Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur and a coach for the England national team. As a left back, Powell played for Southend United, Derby County, Charlton Athletic, West Ham United, Watford and Leicester City. He also made five appearances for the England national team.
Ben Anthony Foster is an English professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Premier League club Watford.
Matthew Etherington is an English former professional footballer who played as a winger. He manages the under-23 team at Peterborough United.
David James Noble is a professional footballer who plays as a midfielder for club St Albans City.
Paul Peter Robinson is an English former professional footballer who played as a left-sided defender. Also capable of playing at centre-back, he represented five clubs in the Premier League and Football League between 1996 and 2018. He was capped three times for the England under-21 team in 1999.
Jon Harley is an English former professional footballer.
Daniel Vaughn Webber is an English former professional football striker. He represented England under-20s in 2002.
Gavin Andrew Mahon is an English former professional footballer who played as a defensive midfielder.
Adrian Joseph Mariappa is a Jamaican professional footballer, who last played as a defender for Championship side Bristol City. Born in England, he represents the Jamaica national team.
Stephen Francis Henderson is an Irish professional footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Charlton Athletic.
Troy Matthew Deeney is an English professional footballer who plays as a striker for EFL Championship club Birmingham City.
Craig Dawson is an English professional footballer who plays as a defender for Premier League club West Ham United. He has previously played for Radcliffe Borough, Bolton Wanderers, Rochdale, West Bromwich Albion and Watford.