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Player Database: Michael Boulding
By: Mike Gray
|63 (18)||28 goals|
Former tennis professional who joined the game late after switching sports. Joined Doncaster Rovers initially on trial but signed for non leaguers Hallam FC of Sheffield.
It was at Hallam where Boulding was first noticed, and it was not long until he stepped up to the professional game with Mansfield Town. In October 2001, Boulding a real unknown to the game was given a go with Grimsby after rejecting a contract offer from Lincoln City.
Boulding, who could play either up front or on the left wing, was eased into the first team, having started off only as a back up player to Jevons, Rowan and Jeffrey. Following decent display after decent display, Boulding - by now nicknamed "Quick Mick" - became more and more involved, hitting a memorable hatrick in a 6-2 win over Wimbledon at Blundell Park.
Boulding finished the season on 11 goals (clubs top scorer for the season) and had earned a lot of respect, respect that would see him reject a Grimsby contract offer and join Premiership Aston Villa on a free transfer.
Boulding played an integral part in Villa's Intertoto Cup campaign and scored on his debut for The Villains, however he was pushed down the striker ranks along with Croatian Bosko Balaban. Boulding had to settle down behind Angel, Vassell, Allback and Dion Dublin, and in the end was allowed to leave on loan.
Boulding joined Sheffield United on loan (the club he supported as a child) and made 4 appearances, scoring twice before injury got the better of him. Now back at Villa, it was no surprise that the Town reject returned to Grimsby around 6 months after leaving them for pastures new.
His injury woe continued and his 4 goals in 12 games was not enough to keep Town safe, and The Mariners were relegated. Boulding managed to hit 13 goals in for Grimsby in Division Two but slapped in a transfer request when Paul Groves was sacked.
So Quick Mick left Town for the second time this time to join rivals Barnsley, with Â£50,000 and Isaiah Rankin coming the other way.
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