Boro’s International Stars


By BoroGuide

Well, hasn’t the World Cup been exciting? While our boys go on their summer holidays after a disappointing season, the world’s elite are treating us to one of the most exciting tournaments of all time. We’ve seen unbelievable Tim Cahill volleys; astonishing Robin Van Persie headers; and, sadly, Luis Suarez doing what Luis Suarez does – bite people. But Stevenage is no stranger to World Class international players; plenty of faces passing through our changing rooms over the years.

Let’s take a look at just a few who have gone on to make their mark on the biggest stage of them all.


Steve Morison

Steve Morison had a glittering career at Stevenage; two 30+ goal scoring seasons and a 20+ campaign at Broadhall Way. He captained the side and won the FA Trophy in his last year at the club. Surprisingly, however, that wasn’t the finest moment of his career.

After a move to Millwall, John Toshack selected the now 30-year old  in July 2010 to represent Wales. He’s since gone on to earn 20 international caps; netting a vital goal against Montenegro in a Euro 2012 qualifier.


Barry Hayles

Hayles first made a name for himself at Stevenage, making over 150 appearances for the club before moving on to Fulham, Leicester City and Millwall. He quickly became a household name at Craven Cottage and even in the Premier League; banging in 44 goals for the Lilywhites. Many feel he should have more than the 10 international caps he secured for his native Jamaica.


Efe Sodje

The enigmatic Sodje has had his fair share of highs and lows during a career spanning 20 years. Starting out with Boro, he made 116 appearances in the Conference. Then, he moved on to play with his brothers at various clubs across the world.

Sodje’s defining moment came in 2002, when he was selected in the 23-man Nigeria squad for the World Cup; lining up to take on England and good friend Rio Ferdinand.

As well as shutting out the likes of Michael Owen and David Beckham that day, Nigeria narrowly lost out 1-0 to Argentina to end their dreams. Many would agree, however, that it was a commendable effort from the African side.

Sodje will be hoping the current national team can better that feat when they face up to Argentina again in their final group match in the hope of qualifying for the World Cup 2014 Second Round.


Ray Houghton

Of course, Ray Houghton is only remembered for one thing – that goal; one of the most important goals in Irish history. It went some way to making up for the pain the side suffered at the World Cup four years earlier; knocked out by the Italians on the Azzuri’s home turf.

At home, his success in the Liverpool side of the late 1980s is the stand out achievement. But there was also a short spell with Stevenage in the twilight of a career; one that saw him earn 73 international caps for Ireland and a place in World Cup history.


Daley Thompson

OK, so not quite a World Cup superstar, but with two Olympic gold medals and four world records, it’s impossible to leave him off the list; even if he did only make one appearance for the Boro.

After a glittering athletics career in which he became a bona fide legend, the man with the moustache turned to football, lining up for Stevenage, Mansfield Town and Ilkeston FC.


by Sean O’Connor