Gasopedia - Bristol Rovers Wiki
Scott Sinclair
Nationality: Eng
Rovers apps (gls)1: 2 (0)
Date of birth: 25 March 1989
Place of birth: Bath
Height: 5 ft 10 in
Position: Forward
Date joined: 1 July 2004
Joined from: Bath City
Date left: 1 July 2005
1 League appearances and goals only.

Scott Sinclair is a forward who made just two appearances for Rovers during the 2004-05 season before making a controversial move to then Premiership champions Chelsea. After a number of loan moves to various Football League clubs he was transferred to Swansea City in 2010 for an initial fee of £500,000, rising to over a million depending on performance.


At Rovers[]

Sinclair joined Rovers aged 7. In December 2004, Sinclair made his first-team debut as a late substitute for Junior Agogo in a 1-1 draw against Leyton Orient. He became Rovers' second youngest player ever aged 15 years and 277 days, 104 days older than Ronnie Dix was in 1928.

It wasn't until April 2005 for Sinclair to make his second and final appearance for Rovers, against Rushden & Diamonds, again as a late substitute but this time for Ryan Williams. After numerous impressive appearances in the reserves and youth teams, Sinclair attracted the attentions of many Premiership and Championship clubs.

Eventually Sinclair rejected a professional contract with Rovers and joined Chelsea, a move that was controversial because initially Rovers received no money for the player. Chelsea were then forced to pay Rovers £200,000 compensation as well as a number of cash sums that Chelsea may have to pay in the future. These include fixed amounts based on appearances, £200,000 if and when Sinclair makes his full international debut and a 15% sell on clause.

Compensation ruling[]

The Football League Appeals Committee set the following compensation figures for the transfer of Scott Sinclair from Bristol Rovers to Chelsea:

  • Initial fee of £200,000
  • £50,000 on first team debut (activated on 10 January 2007, in a League Cup game against Watford)
  • £125,000 on making 10 first team appearances (activated on 16 February 2008, in an FA Cup game against Huddersfield Town)

The following clauses were also included in the ruling, but he left Chelsea before any of them came into effect:

  • £125,000 on making 20 first team appearances
  • £125,000 on making 30 first team appearances
  • £125,000 on making 40 first team appearances
  • £200,000 on making his senior international debut

Chelsea also have to pay 15% of any future profit (including transfer fees and any money received from sell-on clauses) to Rovers, and since his move to Swansea was for an initial fee of £500,000, after Chelsea had already paid £375,000, that means Chelsea made a £125,000 profit on the deal and so an extra £18,750 went into the Pirates' coffers. So far Rovers have received a total of £393,750 from his transfer.

Post Rovers[]

Sinclair made his Chelsea debut in a Carling Cup match against Wycombe Wanderers in January 2007. Shortly after he was loaned out to Plymouth Argyle, then managed by Ian Holloway who noticed Sinclair's potential when he was 10. In his second game for the Pilgrims, an FA Cup match against Barnet, Sinclair scored his first ever professional goal. He made 18 appearances for Plymouth, helping them through to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, before returning to Chelsea in April 2007, playing two matches, as a substitute against Arsenal and his first starting appearance against Manchester United. In the match against United he suffered a broken metatarsal.

He returned for Chelsea in the 2008 Community Shield against Manchester United, a match Chelsea lost on penalties. His first goal for Chelsea came against Hull City in a 4-0 Carling Cup win.

He then moved on loan to Queens Park Rangers where he played nine times scoring just once against Crystal Palace. He returned to Chelsea for a few months making four appearances this time before moving, again on loan, to Charlton Athletic. Just three substitute appearances followed as he struggled to break into the first team. In order to get more experience, Sinclair's loan at Charlton was terminated and he moved to Crystal Palace. His form was again impressive, helping his side to the play-off's where they failed to make the final losing to Bristol City.

The fifth loan spell of his Chelsea career came in January 2009, when he joined Birmingham City, and he was loaned out yet again to Wigan Athletic for the whole of the 2009–10 season. He eventually left Chelsea when he was signed by Swansea City in August 2010 for an initial transfer fee of £500,000, with a number of clauses that could see the fee rise to over £1M. He established a place for himself in the history books of Swansea City Football Club when he scored a hat-trick in the Championship play-off final at Wembley to send them up to the Premier League for the first time, making them the first Welsh team to play in that league.

Career stats[]

Season Club League
Apps Goals
2004–05 Bristol Rovers 2 0
2006–07 Chelsea 2 0
2006–07 Plymouth Argyle (loan) 15 2
2007–08 Chelsea 1 0
2007–08 Queens Park Rangers (loan) 9 1
2007–08 Charlton Athletic (loan) 3 0
2007–08 Crystal Palace (loan) 6 2
2008–09 Chelsea 2 0
2008–09 Birmingham City (loan) 14 0
2009–10 Chelsea 0 0
2009–10 Wigan Athletic (loan) 18 1
2010–11 Swansea City 43 19
2011–12 Swansea City 38 8