Player profile

Mike Hooper

Mike Hooper

Birthdate: 10 February 1964
Birthplace: Bristol, England
Other clubs: Mangotsfield United, Bristol City (1983-85), Wrexham (1985), Leicester City (loan 1990), Newcastle United (1993-96), Sunderland (loan 1995)
Bought from: Wrexham
Signed for LFC: £40,000, 25.10.1985
Liverpool debut: 16.08.1986
Last appearance: 01.05.1993
Contract expiry: 23.09.1993
Win ratio: 42.47% W:31 D:19 L:23
Total games/goals opposite LFC: 1 / 0
LFC league games/goals: 51 / 0
Total LFC games/goals: 73 / 0

Player profile

After impressing with fourth division Wrexham, as well as receiving a degree in English Literature at Swansea University, Hooper joined Liverpool in 1985 as a reserve to Bruce Grobbelaar who hadn't missed a game for four years. Ten months later in the Charity Shield at Wembley against Everton Grobbelaar got injured and Hooper made eight appearances in his absence. Hooper's longest spell in goal was for 25 consecutive games from September 1988 until January 1989. Hooper had initially come into the side as Grobbelaar had meningitis but when he was ready again in November, Dalglish was happy enough to keep Hooper in goal until shaky performances resulted in him losing his place. Souness preferred him as well to Grobbelaar and James from November to January in the 1992/93 season, adding 15 games to his tally. Hooper was an able understudy although not competent enough to become Liverpool's first-choice 'keeper for good. Hooper signed for Kevin Keegan's Newcastle in September 1993, after being on bench duty at Liverpool for eight solid months, and suffered a similar fate at the Magpies as inconsistency crept in when given a proper chance. Hooper dropped out of the game for good in the summer of 1996 at only 32. He has since had various jobs, including as a nightclub bouncer and courier.

A little known fact about Hooper is that he is a bird enthusiast as noted by Paul Lake in his autobiography "I'm Not Really Here". "Lilleshall's vast gardens were a haven for wildlife - rabbits, foxes and badgers were a frequent sight but it was our feathered friends that held the biggest novelty value for me," Lake wrote. "I was used to the occasional tweeting sparrow or screeching starling in Manchester, but never had heard anything remotely like the stereophonic Shropshire birdsong that greeted me every morning. Mike Hooper, the Liverpool goalkeeper and fellow Lilleshall inmate, was a keen birdwatcher who never tired of reminding us that we were in a twitcher's paradise. Whenever he heard an unusual chirrup he would stop in his tracks, even if it was slap-bang in a middle of a training session. 'Sshhhh, that's a lesser-crested house-warbler' he'd say with a whisper, cupping his ears to listen as the ball flew past him into the top corner. 'Yeah, and there's a great tit between the posts,' was one memorable riposte."

Appearances per season

Season League FA LC Europe Other Total
Totals 51 5 10 4 3 73
1986-1987 11 0 0 0 2 13
1987-1988 2 2 0 0 0 4
1988-1989 17 1 6 0 1 25
1989-1990 0 0 0 0 0 0
1990-1991 7 0 0 0 0 7
1991-1992 5 0 1 3 0 9
1992-1993 9 2 3 1 0 15
1993-1994 0 0 0 0 0 0

A more detailed look at the player's appearances

Total Opponent
8 Arsenal
5 Everton
4 Coventry City
3 Southampton
3 Stoke City
3 Manchester United
3 West Ham United
3 QPR
3 Crystal Palace
2 Nottingham Forest
2 Bolton Wanderers
2 Sheffield Wednesday
2 Genoa
2 Aston Villa
2 Charlton Athletic
2 Middlesbrough
2 Derby
2 Luton Town
2 Norwich City
2 Manchester City
2 Newcastle United
2 Walsall
1 Chelsea
1 Blackburn Rovers
1 Sunderland
1 Leeds United
1 Sheffield United
1 Watford
1 Leicester City
1 Carlisle United
1 Wimbledon
1 Millwall
1 Spartak Moscow
1 Kuusysi Lahti
Total Started/substitutions
71 Started
36 On the bench
2 Substitute
0 Substituted
Total Competition
42 League
10 League Cup
9 England Premier League
5 FA Cup
3 UEFA Cup
1 Screen Sport Super Cup
1 Centenary Trophy
1 Charity Shield
1 European Cup Winners Cup

Milestone Appearances

# Date Against Stadium Competition
1 16.08.1986 Everton Wembley Other
50 18.09.1991 Kuusysi Lahti Anfield Europe

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Related Quotes

"Lilleshall's vast gardens were a haven for wildlife - rabbits, foxes and badgers were a frequent sight but it was our feathered friends that held the biggest novelty value for me. I was used to the occasional tweeting sparrow or screeching starling in Manchester, but never had heard anything remotely like the stereophonic Shropshire birdsong that greeted me every morning. Mike Hooper, the Liverpool goalkeeper and fellow Lilleshall inmate, was a keen birdwatcher who never tired of reminding us that we were in a twitcher's paradise. Whenever he heard an unusual chirrup he would stop in his tracks, even if it was slap-bang in a middle of a training session. 'Sshhhh, that's a lesser-crested house-warbler' he'd say with a whisper, cupping his ears to listen as the ball flew past him into the top corner. 'Yeah, and there's a great tit between the posts,' was one memorable riposte."

Paul Lake in his autobiography: "I'm Not Really Here" on Mike Hooper

Other Clubs

Club Season Club rank League apps League goals Total apps Total goals
Mangotsfield United Western League N/A N/A N/A N/A
Bristol City 1984-1985 England Third Division 1 0 1 0
Wrexham 1984-1985 England Fourth Division 20 0 20 0
Wrexham 1985-1986 England Fourth Division 14 0 17 0
Leicester City 1990-1991 England Second Division 14 0 15 0
Newcastle United 1993-1994 England Premier League 19 0 22 0
Newcastle United 1994-1995 England Premier League 6 0 6 0
Sunderland 1994-1995 England First Division 0 0 0 0
Newcastle United 1995-1996 England Premier League 0 0 0 0
Total 74 0 81 0
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