view Connell's match-by-match record

After scoring 29 goals for Grimsby in the Conference, Connell was signed on a two year deal in July 2011, for an undisclosed fee believed to be in the region of 150,000. Having paid a relatively high fee for his services, it was somewhat of a surprise when Connell was named on the bench for the opening games of the season - Town boss Paolo di Canio starting with fellow pre-season signing Raffaele de Vita and youngster Billy Bodin in attack. Connell made substitute appearances in each of the opening four matches - playing fifteen minutes on his debut on the opening day victory over Crewe - when he eventually made his full debut against Bristol City in the Carling Cup, he was substituted at half-time, and dropped completely for the trip to Shrewsbury the following weekend. Though he was drafted back into the starting eleven for a Carling Cup tie against Southampton three days later, di Canio substituted him after just half-an-hour - Connell admitting that being in and out of the side knocked his confidence.

Despite the stuttering start to his Town career, the Swindon crowd seemed to take an instant liking to Connell, and this was enhanced at the beginning of September - coming off the bench with the Town 2-1 down against Rotherham in a match televised on Sky, Connell scored with his first touch just ten seconds after entering the fray, before notching the winner with nine minutes of the game remaining - Connell went on to describe the game as one of the best days of his career.

It proved to be a recurring theme throughout Connell's first season at Swindon - generally finding himself in and out of the starting eleven as di Canio rotated his team to suit their opponents - twelve other forward players used at different points during the campaign. Opening the scoring in a superb 3-0 win at Crawley, Connell kept his starting place throughout most of September, before being benched for virtually all of October - his next goal didn't come until mid-November in a 1-1 draw at AFC Wimbledon, but after missing a number of other opportunities in the same game, the arrival of Ronan Murray on loan saw Connell dropped from the sixteen.

Despite consistently being substitute or substituted over the remainder of the season, Connell netted some crucial goals in the run-in - most notably an equalising goal that helped Swindon to a giant-killing of Premiership Wigan in the FA Cup, a winner against Barnet in the Johnstone's Paint Trophy Area Final that secured a place at Wembley, a second-half brace that saw the Town come from behind to win against second-placed Shrewsbury, the opener in another promotion clash against Torquay, and a crucial late winner against Plymouth that left the Town teetering on the brink of promotion. The goal against Plymouth saw particularly emotional scenes, as Connell ran to the dugout to celebrate with di Canio - the Town crowd discovering after the game that di Canio had lost his mother the day before the game, a situation that Connell was able to empathise with.

Connell's last goal of the season came on the penultimate weekend - scoring the Town's final goal in a 5-0 victory over Port Vale that secured the League Two championship also meant that Connell finished the campaign as the club's leading scorer, with thirteen goals. Soon after, Connell described the season as the "most enjoyable" of his career, whilst also stating that he wanted to be a big part of the club's future. However, when the team returned for pre-season, Connell was named as one of three players deemed surplus to requirements by di Canio - and after rumoured interest from York, Crawley, Scunthorpe and Stevenage, he soon settled his contract and joined League Two Bradford - Connell expressing his surprise at being released, admitting he was leaving Swindon with a heavy heart.


Played Gls Played Gls Played Gls Played Gls Played Gls
'11/'12 13 (+19) 11 3 (+1) 1 2 - 5 (+1) 1 23 (+21) 13
TOTAL 13 (+19) 11 3 (+1) 1 2 - 5 (+1) 1 23 (+21) 13


18 JUL 2011 IN Grimsby Town
Undisclosed fee (undisclosed six figure fee, believed to be around 150,000)
20 JUL 2012 OUT (released)
Bradford City

full name

Alan John Connell


date of birth
5 February 1983


usual positions
centre forward

youth career
Tottenham Hotspur

senior career
Ipswich Town
AFC Bournemouth
Torquay United
Hereford United
AFC Bournemouth
Grimsby Town
Bradford City
Northampton Town
Grimsby Town
Havant & Waterlooville
Poole Town

AFC Bournemouth
youth coach

website links