They Played for Both Clubs: Danny Shittu

Richard Heathcote

More muscle than man

Daniel Olusola Shittu was born on Krypton....no, Lagos, Nigeria in September 1980.

After moving to England with his parents as a child, he began his professional career at Charlton Athletic, after a trial at Norwich City as a teenager. He spent January and February 2001 out on loan, first making 17 appearances and scoring twice for Blackpool, before finishing the season with 18 appearances and one goal for fellow London side Queens Park Rangers.

Shittu's debut for Rangers as a loanee, away at Peterborough in October 2001 ended in his being sent off in the 83rd minute. His first goal for QPR away at Chesterfield in December 2001 in a game in which he was again sent off.

He moved to QPR on a permanent deal for £350,000 in January 2002 with the fee paid for by QPR supporter and later Life President Harold Winton, who also paid Shittu's wages during his first season at the club.

Shittu went on to have a very successful spell at Loftus Road becoming a fan's favourite for his robust and combative performances in the heart of the defence. He was part of the team that made it to the Division Two play-off Final in 2003 where Rangers were narrowly beaten by Cardiff. He was also a key member of the QPR side that won promotion the following season.

He made a total of 182 appearances in four seasons and scored 17 goals for the club.In August 2006 he was signed for £1.6 million by Premiership newcomers Watford. This move was controversial, as Shittu had passed a medical at West Bromwich Albion, before a late call from Watford manager Aidy Boothroyd.

In a season of struggle against relegation, in February 2008 Shittu managed to score both for and against his former club, Charlton Athletic in one memorable game.

He remained with the club following relegation, and thrived back in the Championship where following a successful 2007-08 season in which Shittu scored 9 goals in all competitions, he was named in the PFA Championship team of the year. He made 69 appearances scoring 8 times for Watford between 2006-2008.

Shittu left Watford in August 2008 to join Premier League side Bolton Wanderers for a fee of £2m plus further add-ons, turning down a move to Scottish champions Rangers in the process. Shittu made his debut for Bolton on 30 August during their 0-0 draw with West Brom. He then went on to start the next two games against Fulham and Arsenal, but then did not make another appearance until 28 December in a 1-0 loss at home to Wigan Athletic.

Shittu went on to make 10 league appearances for Bolton in his first season at the club, nine of which were starts.

Falling out of favour, Shittu did not make a single appearance during the 2009-10 season, only managing to make four appearances as an unused substitute.

During Shittu's absence from the Premier League, he made regular appearances for the Bolton reserves team.

In September 2010, the club announced that they had a come to an agreement with Shittu to release him from his contract.Now a free agent, Shittu signed for Millwall on a three-month contract. After an impressive string of performances he signed for QPR under manager Neil Warnock.

After impressive performances in the Championship winning season he was offered a new 12-month contract in June, however he did not make the 25-man Premier League squad meaning he was then released at the end of the season, making only one appearance the whole season.

In August 2012, Shittu rejoined Millwall on a 1-year contract and was named as vice-captain. On 13 March he scored the only goal, a header away to Blackburn Rovers to put Millwall into the FA Cup semi-final against Wigan Athletic at Wembley Stadium.

He was also voted player of the year for 2013.

International Career

Shittu made his international debut for Nigeria against Paraguay on 26 March 2002. He was a regular under coach Berti Vogts and played a significant role for the Super Eagles team that lost in the quarter-finals of the 2008 CAF Africa Cup of Nations to hosts Ghana.

He was also part of the back four for Nigeria at 2010 Africa Cup of Nations in Algeria as the side finished third. Shittu was involved in the qualification for the 2010 FIFA World Cup making four appearances for the Super Eagles with his first coming in a 1-0 win away to South Africa on 6 June 2008. His second came in a 4-1 win at home over Sierra Leone. As well as the 0-0 draw away with Mozambique and the 1-0 home win in the reverse fixture.

Shittu was selected for the 23-man Nigeria squad for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. He made his first appearance in the World Cup in their opening game of Group B against Argentina on 12 June 2010..

Career Statistics

Club

Season

League

National Cup

League Cup

Continental

Other

Total

Division

Apps

Goals

Apps

Goals

Apps

Goals

Apps

Goals

Apps

Goals

Apps

Goals

Charlton Athletic

1999-2000

League One

0

0

0

0

0

0

-

-

-

-

0

0

Total

0

0

0

0

0

0

-

-

-

-

0

0

Blackpool (loan)

2000-01

League One

17

2

0

0

0

0

-

-

2

0

19

2

Total

17

2

0

0

0

0

-

-

2

0

19

2

Queens Park Rangers (loan)

2001-02

Championship

18

1

0

0

0

0

-

-

-

-

18

1

Queens Park Rangers

2002-03

Championship

46

7

1

0

1

0

-

-

-

-

48

7

2003-04

Championship

20

0

0

0

0

0

-

-

4

0

24

0

2004-05

Championship

34

4

1

0

0

0

-

-

2

0

37

4

2005-06

Championship

45

4

1

0

0

0

-

-

-

-

46

4

Total

173

16

3

0

1

0

-

-

6

0

183

16

Watford

2006-07

Premier League

30

1

2

0

2

1

-

-

-

-

34

2

2007-08

Championship

39

7

1

2

0

0

-

-

1

0

41

9

Total

69

8

3

2

2

1

-

-

1

0

75

11

Bolton Wanderers

2008-09

Premier League

10

0

1

0

1

0

-

-

-

-

12

0

2009-10

Premier League

0

0

0

0

0

0

-

-

-

-

0

0

Total

10

0

1

0

1

0

-

-

-

-

12

0

Millwall

2010-11

Championship

9

0

1

0

0

0

-

-

-

-

10

0

Total

9

0

1

0

0

0

-

-

-

-

10

0

Queens Park Rangers

2010-11

Championship

7

0

0

0

0

0

-

-

-

-

7

0

2011-12

Premier League

0

0

0

0

1

0

-

-

-

-

1

0

Total

7

0

0

0

1

0

-

-

-

-

8

0

Millwall

2012-13

Championship

39

0

4

2

1

0

-

-

-

-

44

2

2013-14

Championship

13

1

0

0

0

0

-

-

-

-

13

1

Total

52

1

4

2

1

0

-

-

-

-

57

3

Career total

337

27

12

4

11

0

-

-

9

0

369

31

Career Honours

Queens Park Rangers

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