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2Michael Smith
Full name Michael Smith
Nationality Nir Northern Ireland
Rovers apps (goals)a 66 (1)
Position Defender
Date of birth 4 September 1988
in Ballyclare
Height 5 ft 11 in
23 June 2011 from Ballymena United

Senior clubs
Ballyclare Comrades
Ballymena United
Bristol Rovers
a League appearances and goals only
Last updated by Gasheadsteve on 4/10/2013

Nothern Irish defender Michael Smith signed for Rovers ahead of the 2011–12 season from Ballymena United. It was something of a coup for The Pirates, as they snatched him from from under the nose of Scottish Premier League side Kilmarnock, who were also keen to sign him.

He made twenty appearances in League Two in his first season in Bristol, and scored his first goal in English football in the opening game of the 2012–13 season, a 3–1 defeat to Ipswich Town in the League Cup.

He established himself as a vital part of the Rovers lineup throughout 2012–13, and was one of the team's most consistent performers throughout the campaign, which culminated in him being offered a two-year contract extension and winning the club's Player of the Year award.


Michael started his senior footballing career with his home town team Ballyclare Comrades during the 2005–06 season, after having played youth football under the management of his father at Greenisland Boys Club. He picked up Ballyclare's young player of the year award in both the 2006–07 and 2007–08 seasons, before in January 2009 IFA Premiership side Ballymena United paid a £5,000 transfer fee to take him to the Showgrounds. He remained there for two and a half years, picking up representative honours for the Northern Ireland under-18 schools team and Under-23 national team, as well as winning a clean sweep of his club's awards in the 2009–10 season and being named to the Northern Ireland Football Writers' team of the season the same year. Towards the end of this spell he had a number of trial spells with Kilmarnock but with no permanent manager in place they were unable to prevent Rovers from snapping him up in 2011.

Career stats[]

  • N.B. Appearances for Ballyclare Comrades are given for all competitions, not just league games.
Season Club League
Apps Goals
2005–06 Ballyclare Comrades 1 0
2006–07 Ballyclare Comrades 25 2
2007–08 Ballyclare Comrades 39 1
2008–09 Ballyclare Comrades 27 7
2008–09 Ballymena United 12 0
2009–10 Ballymena United 30 2
2010–11 Ballymena United 34 3
2011–12 Bristol Rovers 20 0
2012–13 Bristol Rovers 38 1


  • Ballyclare Comrades young player of the year: 2006–07 and 2007–08
  • Ballymena United player of the year: 2009–10
  • Ballymena United players' player of the year: 2009–10
  • Ballymena United goal of the season: 2009–10
  • Named in Northern Ireland Football Writers' team of the season: 2009–10
  • Bristol Rovers player of the year: 2012–13

Record against Rovers[]

Michael has never played against Bristol Rovers.

Bristol Rovers Football Club Player of the Year
2006–07 Steve Phillips 2007–08 Stuart Campbell 2008–09 Rickie Lambert 2009–10 Stuart Campbell
2010–11 Stuart Campbell 2011–12 Danny Woodards 2012–13 Michael Smith