Fromer Alex star to be pursue a physio
The former Crewe Alexandra forward Rob Hulse has reportedly retired from the game at the age of 33 after being released from his last club Queens Park Rangers in the summer.
The Crewe-born Hulse had been linked with a possible move back to his hometown club but nothing materialised and he has now chosen to pursue a career in physiotherapy.
After overcoming a troublesome growth spurt as a teenager Hulse successfully came through the club’s renowned Academy system to make his debut against Norwich in March 2000.
His first senior goal against Barnsley on the final day of that first season could not have been more timely, as it sealed a 2-0 win to keep Crewe in the Championship. He established himself in Dario Gradi’s first team the following season, scoring 11 goals in 38 games, but his consistent form couldn’t keep Crewe in the second tier.
Despite interest from other clubs that summer, Hulse showed great loyalty to the club by signing a one-year contract extension to help us back up. Hulse was enjoyed his best goalscoring season in 2002/03, scoring 27 goals in 42 games. He was voted player-of the-season across the board and his super form secured him a move to West Bromwich Albion.
During his first season at the Hawthorns, Hulse’s goals return of 13 helped the Baggies earn promotion to the Premier League and Hulse went on to make five appearances in the top flight before he moved to Leeds United on loan in February 2004.
He made the move to Elland Road more permanent that summer but he suffered play-off heart break when Leeds lost to Watford in Cardiff.
Sheffield United took Hulse into the Premier League and he started the season with a goal against Liverpool. He went on to 8 goals in 29 appearances in the top tier before he suffered a serious injury against Chelsea in March 2007.
Hulse returned to football just before Christmas with the Blades back in the Championship but he struggled to recapture his goalscoring form and he moved onto Derby County in 2008.
The combative target man regained his fitness and goal touch with the Rams with 18 goals in 54 games during the 2008/09 season and he followed that up with a further 12 goals the following year.
He signed for his final club QPR in the summer of 2010 and he was part of the squad that won promotion back to the FA Premier League but with his first team chances limited he later joined London clubs Charlton and Millwall on loan.
Overall, the Crewe-born striker scored 129 goals in 440 appearances.
Everyone at the Alex wishes Hulsey all the best in his future career.