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Ian Harte

Defender

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Biography

Date of birth

31/08/1977

Signed

31/08/2010

Country

Republic of Ireland

Harte came to Elland Road in 1995, moving from Home Farm in Ireland. At Leeds he would start his nine year long stay with the club, becoming an integral part of the set-up alongside club legend and uncle Garry Kelly.

The Whites finished fifth in 1998 and then third the following season. European glory followed – a UEFA Cup semi-final against Galatasaray, home draws against Barcelona and AC Milan earned him Champions League fixtures against Real Madrid, Lazio and Deportivo La Coruna and led to a semi-final clash against Valencia.

On the international scene, Harte featured in all four of the Republic of Ireland's World Cup 2002 fixtures and amassed more than 60 caps in total.

Three years in Spain saw Harte compete in La Liga with Levante before brief spells at Sunderland and Blackpool led him to Carlisle in 2009.

Harte ended his first full season with the Cumbrians as top scorer, notching 18 goals from centre back, form which prompted Reading to sign him up – and, from the moment he scored on his Madejski Stadium debut, Royals fans knew it would be a decision the club wouldn’t regret.

Signing for the club in 2010 for a fee of £100,000, he continued his goal scoring form into the season, netting another ten goals from left-back on the teams’ way to another Play-off final.

Nevertheless, the following season would see the Royals go all the way, Harte’s 32 league starts and four goals helping the club on our way to a Championship winner’s medal.

The introduction of Reading legend Nicky shorey meant that during the top flight campaign, he and Harte would take turns at the left-back role depending on the opposition and fitness at the time.

Upon relegation back to the Championship, Harte decided to leave Reading for Bournemouth on a one-years contract as he looked to towards the end of his career. He made 26 appearances in that year and extended his contract until June 2015.

Last season he made a handful of appearances, mainly in the cups as Bournemouth’s strong league form has seen them soar towards the top of the table.

His last professional goal came against Birmingham in a 4-2 thumping of the Blues. Even though he’s close to retirement, Harte’s name will always be held high among fans of the Royals.

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