Writer: Peverell Green
Date:Monday December 2 2013
The Where Are They Now series takes a look at the career of former Argyle striker Kevin Nugent.
KEVIN NUGENT - Born 11th April 1969 Edmonton, London.
Kevin began his football career as a trainee with Leyton Orient where he represented the Republic of Ireland in a Youth International. He signed professional forms with Orient on 8th July 1987.
In 1988-89 Kevin was loaned out to Cork City but returned to his parent club for the start of the new season. He had his best season in 1991-92 when he ended the season as leading goalscorer even though he left the club on March 22nd when a £200,000 bid from Argyle manager Peter Shilton was accepted.
While at Orient Kevin made 125 appearances scoring 30 goals.
Kevin made his debut on 24th March 1992 with Argyle desperately trying to survive in Division 2 in a 2-0 defeat at Derby. Unfortunately for him and Argyle, Kevin broke a bone in his foot in only his second start for the club. He didn't return until the final game of the season, a must win game at home to Blackburn.
Despite a crowd of 17,459 turning up to support the Greens, almost treble their average home attendance and a goal from David Smith, it wasn't enough to save them, with Blackburn winning 3-1 and Argyle were relegated from Division 2 to Division 2 (The newly formed Premiership led to the lower divisions being renumbered).
A fully fit Kevin saw him play in 45 league and all eleven cup games in 1992-93, and he started to score goals. The first came in September in a 2-1 home win over Bolton with Dave Regis scoring the first goal.
Kevin didn't score again until November, also in a 2-1 home win, this time against Rotherham with an own goal opening the scoring. He then scored in three successive matches. The first in yet another 2-1 home win, Bournemouth this time, and again Kevin scored the decisive second goal after Paul Boardman had scored the first.
In the following game he scored the second in a 2-2 home draw with Hartlepool, Steve Castle scoring the second Argyle goal. Kevin then scored in the last game before Christmas in a 2-1 defeat at Brighton.
He had to wait until February before he scored again, with three coming in the same game when he got all of the Argyle goals in a 3-2 win at home to Mansfield. In the next home game he again scored in a 2-1 defeat to Burnley. A visit to Rotherham saw Kevin score another; he got the second in a 2-2 draw with Paul Dalton also on the scoresheet.
The same two players scored in a 4-3 defeat at home to Stockport with Paul scoring twice.
In addition to Kevin's eleven league goals he also scored twice in the League Cup, he got the first in a 3-2 second round home win over Luton with Gary Poole and Dave Regis also on the scoresheet, and in the next round in a 3-3 draw at home to Scarborough he scored the third goal with Paul Dalton and Warren Joyce getting the first two.
His goals helped him to finish as joint leading scorer, with Steve Castle and Paul Dalton also scoring thirteen for the season.
1993-94 saw Kevin score four goals in three games in September; on the 14th he got the first in a 4-2 home win over Rotherham with Andy Comyn, Steve Castle and Paul Dalton scoring the others.
On the 18th he scored the Argyle first goal in a 3-2 defeat at Reading with Steve Castle scoring again and on the 25th Kevin scored twice in a 3-2 win at Cardiff with Andy Comyn also on the scoresheet. His next also came when he scored in three successive matches. The first in a superb 5-1 win at Bradford, mainly due to a Dwight Marshall hat trick after Andy Comyn had opened the scoring.
The following Saturday he scored the second in a 2-0 win at home to Hartlepool after Steve Castle had scored the first.
In the next game, a FA Cup second round match Kevin got both goals in a 2-0 win at home to Gillingham.
On December 28th Argyle beat Fulham 3-1 in front of a crowd of 15,609, the biggest Home Park crowd of the season with goals from Kevin, Paul Dalton and an own goal giving the fans an extra Christmas present.
In the next round of the FA Cup a goal from Kevin was enough to beat Chester 1-0 and send Argyle into the fourth round. A fortnight after his cup goal Kevin scored twice in a 3-2 home win over Burnley after Dwight Marshall had scored the first goal.
Exactly a month after their winning goals against Burnley Dwight and Kevin teamed up again scoring one a piece in a 2-1 home win over Blackpool.
He then scored three goals in four days in mid-March, scoring two in a 3-1 with at home to Reading with Paul Dalton getting the third and then the opening goal in a 3-0 win at Rotherham with a young Mickey Evans scoring twice.
Kevin's seventeenth and last goal of the season came in a 1-1 draw at Fulham.
Unfortunately although his goals helped Argyle to the play-offs they were unable to progress past the semi-finals.
After the disappointment of the previous season it got worse for the Argyle fans as the free scoring team of 93-94 broke up, scoring only 45 goals in 1994-95 compared to 88 last season.
Kevin scored his first in early September in a 4-2 defeat at St. Andrews Birmingham; Steve Castle scored the other, one of his few goals that season.
Fans had to wait until February until Kevin got another goal, and that was in another defeat, this time 3-2 at Shrewsbury with Mickey Evans also scoring.
After waiting five months for a goal he then scored the winner in the next game a 2-1 win at Peterborough after Steve McCall had scored the first goal.
Kevin's next goal came in a 2-1 home win over Hull with Mickey Evans again joining him on the scoresheet.
He then scored the Argyle goal in a 1-1 draw at home to Bristol Rovers. On 17th April Argyle fans were treated to a rare Peter Swan goal when he scored the first in a 2-1 win at home to Swansea with Kevin scoring the winner.
His last goal of the season came in the last game a 1-1 draw at home to Oxford, but it wasn't enough to save Argyle and only twelve months after finishing the season with an 8-1 win at Hartlepool they were relegated.
Despite only scoring a third of the goals he had in the previous season he still finished as joint leading scorer this time with Richard Landon.
After a disastrous six match start to the 1995-96 season, Argyle had lost all four league games and both home and away legs of the League Cup, manager Neil Warnock had to make changes and Kevin, along with others were dropped.
In late September Bristol City made a bid of £75,000 and he was soon on his way to Ashton Gate.
Kevin joined City on 29th September 1995, spending two seasons at the club making 82 appearances and scoring 15 goals, he didn't really settle in Bristol and when Cardiff offered £65,000 for him on 27th June 1997 he moved along the M4 into Wales.
Kevin missed a lot of his first season with Cardiff but things improved for him in the second, he even won the Player of the Year award, he was later made team captain.
After four seasons at the club he suffered an Achilles injury and lost his place in the team and in January 2002 after making 119 appearances and scoring 37 goals he left on a free transfer to re-join Leyton Orient.
After a year back at his old club where he scored 5 goals in 32 appearances in January 2003 he went out on loan to Swansea.
After a month's loan he must have impressed as the loan turned into a permanent move.
When new manager Kenny Jackett arrived at the club he decided Kevin was surplus to his requirements and in June 2004 was released.
In a surprising U turn one week later he was re-signed as a player and also appointed assistant manager.
After 82 appearances scoring 19 goals Kevin decided to more or less retire from playing but retained his player registration to allow him to play during injury crises.
He was needed to play one more time; on 8th October 2005 he played in a 1-0 defeat at Yeovil.
When Kenny Jackett was sacked as Swansea manager Kevin stepped in as caretaker manager, taking charge of the team for two matches until Roberto Martinez took over.
The new manager brought his own assistant with him and Kevin was offered the job of chief scout. Kevin remained at Swansea for the rest of the 2006-07 season before returning to Leyton Orient for a third time becoming youth team coach in June 2007.
When Orient manager Martin Ling was sacked on 18th January 2009 Kevin took over as caretaker manager. When, after four games Geraint Williams took over as manager Kevin was appointed his assistant manager.
In April 2010 Geraint Williams was sacked and Kevin again took over as caretaker manager, after one game Russell Slade was appointed manager and Kevin reverted to assistant manager, a job he still holds.
Date:Monday December 2 2013
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