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Ex-Tottenham, West Ham, Stoke, Bradford player takes charge at Peterborough

Ex-Tottenham, West Ham, Stoke, Bradford player Matthew Etherington takes charge at Peterborough United for Wednesday’s game at Fulham.

The Posh have announced that their assistant manager will be managing the first team having been part of the club’s coaching set-up since 2018 and steps in following the resignation of Darren Ferguson on Sunday.

Ferguson finished his third spell as boss after a run of nine winless games, resigning from the Posh who are in a relegation battle.

Darren Ferguson (left), Matthew Etherington (right)

Etherington will be assisted at Craven Cottage by under-23s boss Simon Davies for the time being, however a permanent new boss is planned to be brought in for Saturday’s game against Hull City – with the FA Cup fixture against Man City following that.

Etherington, a former Posh winger, began his coaching career with the club’s under-18 side in May 2018 and became Ferguson’s number two following Mark Robson’s move to West Ham in November.

His first game comes at a Fulham side who are six points clear at the top of the table, having scored a league-high 79 goals, while Posh are five points from safety, having conceded 61 times – the second worst defensive record in the division.

When asked about his focus on Wednesday’s game, he said: “Yeah it is, thank you to the manager, it’s very important I mention that, how good he’s been to me for the last four years of me being here, he was fantastic and will rightfully go down as one of the best managers this club has ever had.

“Yeah, thank you to him, I’ve been asked to prepare the team for Wednesday, and that’s what we’ll do, we’ll do it to the best of our advantage.” 

Born in Truro, Cornwall, Etherington began his footballing career at Peterborough United and was a stand-out performer for the Posh, which attracted the attention of Premier League clubs.

He joined Tottenham Hotspur in 2000, along with Simon Davies, though struggled and left for West Ham United in 2003.

At the East London club, Etherington showed his true form and became a vital player for the Hammers.

However, he had personal problems related to an addiction to gambling and in 2009 was sold by manager Gianfranco Zola to fellow Premier League side Stoke City.

At Stoke, Etherington became a vital member of the side under manager Tony Pulis, winning the player of the year award for the 2009–10 season and also played in the 2011 FA Cup Final.

Etherington remained a regular under Pulis in 2011–12 and 2012–13 before he was released by Mark Hughes at the end of the 2013–14 season.

Etherington had a gambling addiction while he was at West Ham, who issued him a £300,000 loan after he accumulated debts in excess of £800,000.

He also spent time at Tony Adams’ Sporting Chance Clinic.

Matthew’s father, Peter, has thanked Stoke for saving his son’s career and helping him to combat his gambling addiction.

In 2015, Etherington spoke to BBC journalist Victoria Derbyshire concerning the impact of gambling on professional footballers.

His own debts caused by gambling throughout his career were reported as £1.5 million.


1997–2000 – Peterborough United – 51 games (6 goals)
2000–2003 – Tottenham Hotspur – 45 games (1 goal)
2001 → Bradford City (loan) – 13 games (1 goal)
2003–2009 – West Ham United – 165 games (16 goals)
2009–2014 – Stoke City – 152 games (13 goals)
Total – 426 games (37 goals)

National team
1997–1998 – England U16 – 5 games (0 goals)
1999 – England U18 – 3 games (0 goals)
1999 – England U20 – 3 games (0 goals)
2002 – England U21 – 3 games (0 goals)

Twitter users reacted as the ex-Tottenham, West Ham, Stoke, Bradford player takes charge at Peterborough…

@luketylermp3: Deep end, but best of luck to the both of you tomoz. Enjoy the occasion – it’s a free hit

@PaulGC84: Looking forward to seeing how the team are set up and whether Sammie is brought back into the mix #freeszmodics

@AdyBarnett: Will they put themselves on the squad list could do with them both back in the starting line up??

@Tyles154: I’m looking forward to this game, all in the hope that our team comes out!

@leeyum1994: Simon Davies back at the cottage 😍

@TonyskidHall: Full circle Matthew, congratulations. #pufc

@RoyHouldershaw: Good luck matt

@pufc_Jordan02: @FulhamFC be scared 😎

@SpiggyTope: COYS Good luck lads 🙏

@gazhxc: Matty’s Blue Army!! Will be sung from the stands on Saturday #UpThePosh

@PUFC7: Talk about being thrown in at the deep end 😂

@nathphilk: Legend, hope he smashes it 🔴⚪🐐

@lollujo: Give these two the job until the end of the season. If they pull off a miracle, we have a great young manager our hands, if not Fergie can come back then and lead the promotion push!

@scottgmoore_: Matty Etherington’s Blue and White Army ⚽️🔵⚪️

@bob__p: Mushy and Digger! good luck chaps

@POSHLOVERS: Brilliant. Job til end of season please.

@martinhines: My Championship Manager 98/99 save is begging to be played after reading this

@The_RUFC: Where’s Gareth Jellyman?

@SamuraiPizzaRob: If nothing else, at least I can tell my disinterested daughter that I saw the manager *play* for the team when I was young.

@StokeLoudProud: Good luck Matty, but not on the 12th of March 😜

@JohnJohndye: Great experience at the highest level from two top professionals- am sure the lads will be in good hands tomorrow night and wishing them the best of luck against Hull in a massive game!

@JOC1312: Matty ethers 😍😍😍

@leeyum1994: Digger back at the Cottage

@PaulDayNew: McCann starting against Hull in a winnable home fixture. Makes sense. #pufc

@mrandrewdickson: This makes me feel old… it’s not so long ago I remember Matthew Etherington being a hot young prospect you would always make a point of buying from Peterborough on Championship Manager!

@RadioBetts: This sounds like something straight out of one of my Football Manager saves. Be great to have Digger back at the Cottage. One of, if not, my favourite all time players.

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