Yesterday, former Ipswich Town and Wycombe Wanderers midfielder, Matt Bloomfield, announced his retirement from professional football on medical grounds.
Known as ‘Mr Wycombe’, Matt made more than 500 appearances for the Chairboys. He began his career with Ipswich Town before joining Wycombe in December 2003 and quickly established himself as an integral part of the team. Scoring in each of his 18 seasons with the club, Matt reached his 500th appearance in March 2019, having already surpassed the club’s Football League appearance record two years earlier.
During his career, Matt helped the Chairboys secure four promotions, played in the 2006 League Cup semi-final and was honoured with a testimonial match at Adams Park against Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea in 2014 to mark 10 years at the club. However, Matt's most significant promotion was to the Championship in the 2019/20 season, where he featured 30 times, scored twice and captained the side on 23 occasions, including the play-off final at Wembley.
As well as his significant on-pitch presence, Matt was a member of the PFA Management Committee for six years from November 2016-2021, became a UEFA A Licence coach, graduated from the University of Staffordshire with a BA in Professional Sports Writing and Broadcasting and still writes regular columns for the BBC Sport website and the Wycombe Wanderers match day programme. Matt was also a PFA Captains Representative for EFL talks during the 2020 COVID-19 lockdown and was the club signatory in October 2011, when Wycombe became the first football club to sign the Government Charter for Action, tackling homophobia and transphobia in the sport.
In a poignant statement announcing his retirement, Matt thanked the club, his team and family and spoke about his love for football. “I lived out a boyhood dream to represent Ipswich Town in my first professional appearance,” he said. “I then lived out my other boyhood dream to captain a team to victory at Wembley Stadium. I couldn’t have dreamt that the team I captained there would be the team that has become my club. I know that I can retire content knowing that I definitely gave it everything I had.”
PFA Chairman, John Mousinho, who played alongside Bloomfield at Wycombe for a number of years, added, "Matt has had an incredible career, and I was fortunate to spend some time with him while I was at Wycombe Wanderers. His 18 seasons with the club reflect his commitment and dedication to the professional game. Off the pitch, I would like to thank Matt on behalf of the PFA Players’ Board for all of his hard work during his six years on the Management Committee. On behalf of the PFA, we all wish him success in his next steps.”