On Thursday 26th September
2002, Norwich City signed midfielder Nicky Southall from Bolton
Wanderers on a three-month loan deal. The 30-year-old was
brought in by boss Nigel Worthington
to plug the gap on the right side of midfield, caused by injuries
to Mark Rivers, Alex
Notman and Darel Russell. He made
his debut for the Canaries against Preston as a 62nd minute substitute
for Neil Emblen on Saturday 28th September
Nicky began his footballing career at Hartlepool, making his
debut in the 1991/92 season. He made 138 league appearances for
'Pool scoring 24 league goals before transferring to Grimsby in
1995. He made his Grimsby debut against the Canaries, scoring
in a 2-2 draw at Blundell Park. After 72 appearances (and 5 goals)
for Grimsby, he transferred to Gillingham in the 1997/98 season.
154 league appearances for the Kent side, including 17 goals,
preceded a Bosman free transfer to then Premiership newboys Bolton
in the summer of 2001, although the Canaries were interested.
"The nice thing about Nicky is that he gives us options.
He can play anywhere along the right side," explained
Worthington. "I would like to have signed him 15 months
ago, but obviously the lure of the Premiership, and rightly so
for the boy, was more appealing so he went to Bolton,"
added Worthington. "We admired him for a period of time
while he was at Gillingham," explained Worthington. "He
is a very consistent player, he's a Steady Eddie, he's on the
ball and his set-pieces are excellent. He's a good, honest genuine
man and we will have to wait and see if the deal is made permanent."
Nicky made 18 league appearances for Bolton in the 2001/02 season
but found himself further down the pecking order with the Trotters'
signing of international stars Jay Jay Okocha and Youri Djorkaeff.
Gillingham were linked with signing their former star but the
financial implications of the move were too high for the Kent
Nicky was only to pleased to restart his career with the Canaries
stating "Norwich obviously have a Premier League set-up
as it has been in the past and I'm very impressed with it so far..
City have aspirations of making it into the Premiership and they
were so close last year and I see it as a good opportunity for
me to get into the team and show the fans of Norwich I am well
capable of playing here.... I am glad that I'm coming down here
to get some games... I would like to sign on permanently, but
we'll just have to see what happen." (Quotes taken from
article on Pink
Nicky returned to Bolton in mid-November 2002 when Wanderers
had an injury crisis and needed him as cover. He had made 9 appearances
for the Canaries but five of these were as substitute.
On 7th December 2002, Nicky rejoined Gillingham on a free transfer,
signing a three year contract.
Available on a free-transfer in the summer of 2005, Nicky was
linked with a reunion with former Gillingham manager Peter Taylor,
now with Hull newly promoted into the Championship. Instead, he
signed for Notts Forest on 21st June 2005.
On 31st January 2007 it was announced that he had rejoined Gillingham
for a third spell on a 2½ year deal. Southall made his
third debut for Gillingham in the 3-1 away defeat to Huddersfield
Town on 3rd February 2007
He joined Dover Athletic on a one month loan deal on 9th September
2008 and made an immediate impact on his Dover debut, setting
up Shaun Welford for the opening goal of the game against Hendon.
His loan was to gain him first team fitness as he had been plagued
with back and hamstring injuries. Although he returned to Gillingham,
he was released at the end of the 2008/9 season, He had made 372
first team appearances for the Gills.
Southall rejoined Dover Athletic during the 2009 pre-season on
trial, playing in a handful of friendlies before signing on a
permanent deal. He became player/assistant manager when Ian Hendon
was appointed manager of the club in May 2010; however, within
a month Hendon had been appointed as assistant manager at Gillingham
by his predecessor at Dover, Andy Hessenthaler, and subsequently
Southall signed for the Gills for a fourth time, as player/coach
When Hessenthaler was relieved of the manager's job in May 2012,
Southall also left the club. In the latter part of June 2012,
Nicky signed for Ryman League side Whitstable Town. He was appointed
manager in December 2012.
Nicky left Whitstable at the end of the 2013/14 season to become assistant manager at Maidstone
In June 2017, Southall was part of the England team that won the Veterans World Cup in Thailand.
He joined Dover as first team coach in October 2018 where he stayed until June 2022.
In December 2023 he was appointed manager of Lordswood who play in the South Counties East Football League Premier Division.