Ryan Townsend

Last updated : 21 May 2013 By Andy Ashworth & Tony Scholes

Date and Place of Birth

2nd September 1985 - Manchester


Transfers to and from Burnley

youth player from summer 2002

released - 11th May 2005


First and Last Burnley Games

COVENTRY CITY (a) - 13th March 2004

sub: replaced Dean West


Other Clubs






Burnley Career Stats


Season League FA Cup League Cup Others Total
  apps gls apps gls apps gls apps gls apps gls
2003/04 0(1) - - - - - - - 0(1) -
Total 0(1) - - - - - - - 0(1) -


Profile by Andy Ashworth


Big centre half Ryan Townsend had plenty of promise according to all who saw him in the Burnley youth team. It was just a pity that FIFA regulations basically made him unemployable in this country, despite the fact that he had served his apprenticeship here.

His story began in Manchester, his city of birth, son of former Rochdale full back George Townsend. It was not the city of his upbringing as he emigrated with his family to Perth in Australia as a small child. He played schoolboy football in the Perth area but earned himself a 3 year youth contract with the Clarets in 2002. In the Alliance League he was an imposing figure, forming a partnership with Neal Trotman which could so easily have been a match for a number of pairings playing league football around the country. Despite missing around 6 months of his scholarship which a serious shin problem, he made his debut under Stan Ternent while still a member of the youth team.

When the time came to offer him a contract however, the club found out the financial ramifications would make any deal a risk they were unwilling to take. Rules laid out to safeguard the clubs who develop young footballers meant that to give Ryan a professional contract we would have had to pay an £80k fee to ECU Joondalup in Perth. As Michael Duff had cost us less than half this, the decision was made to release him.

Trials for other clubs in England seemed successful but after the development fee was learned of no deals were offered. Townsend returned to Australia to find himself a club at this point. Despite having no team to call his own he was called up to the Australia U-20 World Cup squad, making his international bow and scoring in the competition.

He trained with Perth Glory and convinced them he was worth a deal, signing a short term contract and debuting in the new A-League. As chances were limited he dropped into the Western State League with Wanneroo before being resigned by Perth. He hardly figured in the side though and was allowed to go in search of first team football, finding it in, of all places, Indonesia. Persiba Balikpapan was his destination and he remained with them for one season only before returning to the Western State League with Mandurah City.