Combative and experienced midfielder John Schofield joined Warren Joyce’s Tigers in July 1999, ostensibly to provide cover for the player-manager when not available. However Warren soon kept himself on the touchline and Schofield spent the first half of the season flitting around the midfield, just in front of the back four, looking daggers at opposition players and occasionally playing a sweet forward pass. A touchline falling out with the manager, culed with the emergence of Adam Bolder, saw Schofield drop to the bench in the early months of 2001 and when Brian Little took over the reins in April 2000 Schofield was identified as surplus to requirements and was released that summer.
Born in Barnsley, in his teenage years Schofield had an unsuccessful spell in the Huddersfield Town’s youth team, then trained as a motor mechanic while non-league football around the East Midlands and South Yorkshire. He came to the attention of League clubs in 1988 during a spell at Gainsborough Trinity and joined Lincoln City in return for a £10,000 fee. He was a first team regular at Sincil Bank for six years, debuting in a 4-1 win over Burnley in November 1988 adn scoring his first goal for the Imps in a January 1989 4-3 win over Wrexham. He rose to become club captain and was voted Player of the Season in 1993/94 season. By October 1994 Schofield, now operating at right back, had made 269 appearances for Lincoln and scored 15 goals when he moved to League Division 3 rivals Doncaster Rovers, who were led by foemer Wolves manager Sammy Chung. Schofield was a near ever-present for two and half seasons at Belle Vue but in 1996/97 they slipped out of the Football League and Schofield moved on that close season. He joined Mansfield Town where he spent two seasons prior to joining the Tigers.
In June 2000 Schofield returned to his first league club Lincoln City where he took up the post of Head of Youth Development. However his value of a player remained intact and during the 2000/01 season, his last as a player, he made a further 24 appearances to take his career senior appearance total to 545 (plus 28 goals) – not bad for a player that didn’t make his debut until the age of 23. Schofield remained with Lincoln for several years, nurturing young talent like Jack Hobbs (who moved to Liverpool, and later played for the Tigers) and Scott Loach (who joined Watford). He was appointed first team coach in the summer of 2005 under Keith Alexander’s management and assumed the top job in may 2006 when Alexander departed. He piloted Lincoln to the play-offs in 2006/07, although early season form rasied hopes of automatic promotion, and the Imps lost out to Bristol Rovers in the semi-final. A poor start to 2007/08 saw Schofield, committed to the end to an attacking style of play, sacked by Lincoln.
Early in 2008 Schofield joined the coaching staff at Scunthope United but in June 2008 he moved to Walsall where he was appointed first team coach. He briefly took over as caretaker manager in January 2009 was boss Jimmy Mullen was sacked, then Schofield also left a fortnight later. He became assistant manager to Martin Allen at Cheltenham Town in March 2009. John was again elevated to caretaker manager in October 2009 when Allen was placed on gardening leave, but he reverted to the assistant’s role in January 2010 when Mark Yates was appointed to the manager’s post. Schofield left Whaddon Road at the end of the 2009/10 season. In July 2010 he was appointed first team caoch at Cambridge United but was sacked along with manager Martin Ling in February 2011. In April 2011 he teamed up again with Martin Allen at Notts County, a role that lasted ten months until he left in February 2012. He again followed Martin Allen to Gillingham in July 2012 where the pair masterminded a League Two title winning season in 2013. Allen left in October 2013 to be replaced by ex-City boss Peter Taylor and Schofield’s services were retained until the 2014 close season.
Schofield spent four months between June and October 2014 as assistant manager at Scunthorpe United under Russ Wilcox, another man with Tigers connections, but when the pair were sacked Schofield returned to Lincoln to work as a coach on a voluntary basis. John joined up again with Wilcox n May 2015 who was now in charge at York City, but the pair were sacked again in October 2015. In September 2016 Schofield returned to Doncaster Rovers to work as a professional development coach, assisting younger players as they were readied for introduction to the first team. He rose to first team coach at Doncaster in 2019 under boss Darren Moore before leaving during the summer of 2020. He was then appointed to the Northern Ireland under-21 coaching staff.
Date/Place of Birth: 16 May 1965, Barnsley
Hull City First Game: 10 August 1999, Rotherham United A (League Division Cup First Round First Leg), 34 years, 86 days old
Hull City Final Game: 6 May 2000, Hartlepool United H (League Division 3), 34 years, 356 days old
Woolley Miners Welfare, Shepshed Charterhouse, Matlock Town, Gainsborough Trinity (1988), Lincoln City (1988-1994), Doncaster Rovers (1994-1997), Mansfield Town (1997-1999), Hull City (1999-2000), Lincoln City (2000-2001)
Hull City Record
Career: 35 apps, 0 goalsJohn Schofield
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