Player profiles: Nick Hegarty

Cod Almighty | Article

by Mark Wilson

26 August 2006

You'd be surprised how old Nick is. He's well into his forties now. He's also had a circuitous route to Blundell Park and frankly, it's not the pinnacle of his career. He knocked around in a couple of doo-wop bands in the early 70s before forming the legendary Darts in 1975–76. Darts had huge success with hits including 'Come Back My Love', 'The Boy From New York City' and 'Duke of Earl', with Nick front and centre delivering the bass vocal. Shortly after the band broke up in 1979 he got the job of replacing Lenny Henry in chaotic cult kids' TV show Tiswas and achieved the ambition of most teenage boys (and their fathers, as I recall) by being paid to roll around in a bath of custard with an out-of-breath Sally James...

Oh, Nick Hegarty. Bollocks!

To say that Hegarty's career has yet to ignite might be a bit of an understatement. He joined Town in July 2004 – from Sheffield Wednesday,according to Town's official website, but Soccerbase claims it was from Nottingham Forest. Bizarrely, Soccerbase also claims he was a trainee, and I find it difficult to believe that we plucked a trainee away from either of our bigger near(ish) neighbours. The official site maintains that his progress was hampered by injury and I take that to mean that he could have been considered for more first team outings if he hadn't spent so much time in the recovery position. The cynic in me also wonders if being a regular in our reserve side last season has hampered his development more than injuries. So far he has made a total of three substitute appearances for the first team in two seasons (Soccerbase suggests it's more). None of this stopped him from being voted the supporters' young player of the year in 2005.

Born in June 1986, the 21-year-old from Pontefract is described as a tricky winger and has attracted good reports from those whose lives are so empty that they go and watch the reserves. His first team debut was made against Kidderminster in the final game of the 2004–05 season and he attracted good reports from all who saw him, both of them.

He's also had a couple of loan spells – at Whitby Town in 2005 and Willenhall Town in 2006 – and made three appearances for each of them.

I have to be honest with you, dear reader, and admit that I've not seen Hegarty play (my life is obviously too fulfilled at 2pm on a Tuesday) but the circumstantial evidence from hearsay and others' opinions is that he is a real prospect and if he can keep fit he could be in the first team soon.

Hilariously, his profile on the OS maintains that "impressive performances... have pushed him into the thoughts of Russell Slade". Maybe he can house-share with JPKK in the West Country.