Martin Rice

Martin Rice
Martin Rice
Personal information
Full name Martin John Rice [1]
Date of birth 7 March 1986 (1986-03-07) (age 25)
Place of birth Exeter[2], England
Height 5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Playing position Goalkeeper
Club information
Current club Torquay United
Number 13
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2003–2007 Exeter City 52 (0)
2007–2009 Torquay United 9 (0)
2008–2009 Truro City (loan) 20 (1)
2009–2011 Truro City 42 (0)
2011– Torquay United 0 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 1:22, 26 July 2011 (UTC).
† Appearances (Goals).

Martin John Rice (born 7 March 1986 in Exeter) is an association footballer who plays as a goalkeeper for Football League Two club Torquay United. He spent most of his early professional career at Exeter City and has since played for rivals Torquay United and non-League side Truro City.



Exeter City

Rice came through the youth scheme at Exeter City,[3] his hometown club. Rice began his professional career with the Grecians, making his debut aged 17, and spent four seasons at the club. In his first season, 2003–04, he made five league appearances and two FA Cup appearances. He improved on this record in 2004–05, making 18 appearances in all competitions. However, in 2005–06, Rice only made five appearances, and despite making 27 league appearances the next season, he moved to Torquay United in 2007–08 after reaching the end of his contract with Exeter.[4] Rice returned to St James Park in May 2011 to play for an Exeter XI in Adam Stansfield's testimonial.[5]

Torquay United

Rice's first spell with Torquay United resulted in nine league appearances,[6] in a side that had just been relegated to the Conference National for the first time. Rice failed to establish himself as a regular in the side and was mostly used as backup to the more experienced Canadian goalkeeper Simon Rayner. Rice made more appearances in various cup competitions, amassing 11 cup appearances (including three FA Cup appearances)[7] in total and 20 appearances for the season in all competitions. One of these cup appearances was in the FA Trophy 2007-08 final against Ebbsfleet United, where Torquay lost 1-0. Rice gave away a penalty after bringing down future team-mate Chris McPhee, but made amends by saving the resulting spot-kick to keep the scores level. [8] He had also played in Torquay's semi-final first-leg win over York City, keeping a clean sheet in a 2-0 win, [9] and the second-leg defeat to York on the March 15 2008. [10]

Rice was loaned to Truro City for the majority of the 2008–09 season, returning towards the end of the season to be part of Torquay's play-off squad.[11] He was an unused substitute in Torquay's 2–0 2009 Conference National play-off Final victory over Cambridge United on 17 May 2009.[12]

Rice agreed a new one-year deal with Torquay to stay at Plainmoor as they made their return to the Football League.[13] However, he lasted just three months in to the deal.

After impressing coaches at Truro during his loan spell, Rice left for Cornwall on a free transfer on 29 September 2009 after being released by Torquay.[14]

Truro City

In his loan spell with City in 2008–09, Rice made 20 league appearances, even scoring a goal in the process! With Truro 3–0 up against Abingdon United in injury time, they were awarded a penalty. Rice was given the honours and duly converted,[15] for the only goal of his career so far. Rice kept five clean sheets in his loan spell. He was unable to play in FA Cup or FA Trophy games for Truro whilst on loan, and Torquay had a 24-hour recall on the goalkeeper.[16]

After impressing on loan from Torquay, Rice signed a permanent deal with Truro a few games into the 2009–10 season. Because he had dropped into non-League football, Rice found himself a part-time footballer and worked on a building site to supplement his income. [17] Rice actually made fewer appearances in his first season as a full Truro player, playing 12 games compared to 20 when he was on loan. Two of these appearances were against Mangotsfield United and Maidenhead United in the FA Cup qualifying stages, but the rest of his appearances came in the league.

Rice's second full season at City was more successful, as he made 37 appearances in all competitions. Five of these appearances came in cup competitions, namely three games in the FA Trophy and two in the FA Cup qualifying rounds. Rice enjoyed more success in the league, keeping an impressive 14 clean sheets in 32 games. This rate of almost a clean sheet every other game was a step up from 2008–09, when the custodian only managed an average of one every four games.

During his time at the club, Rice helped the White Tigers to the Conference South,[18] after they had been in the Southern League prior to his arrival. In the 2010–11 season, Rice kept six clean sheets as Truro went on a 10 game unbeaten run.[19] He made his last appearance for Truro in a 3–2 loss to Falmouth Town on 12 July 2011,[20] in the Aubrey Wilkes Trophy,[21] just three days before he left for Torquay. In total, Rice made 69 appearances in all competitions for Truro,[22] more than he managed for Exeter and Torquay in his first spell combined.

Rice's contract with Truro stated that if a league club wanted to buy Rice, he would be allowed to leave.[23] New Torquay manager Martin Ling heard about this clause and decided to sign Rice as cover for first-choice goalkeeper Robert Olejnik.

Return to Torquay

After two seasons with Truro, Rice returned to Torquay as one of new manager Martin Ling's first signings, with the deal being completed on 15 July 2011.[24] Rice is likely to be backup to Austrian goalkeeper Robert Olejnik,[25] who was signed from Falkirk at around the same time.[26] Rice made his second debut for the Gulls in the 2–0 friendly win over Bristol City, coming on at half-time for Olejnik.[27] Rice missed the following friendly against his old club Exeter City,[28] which resulted in a 3–0 win for the Gulls. However, he conceded his first goals in his second spell for Torquay in the 3–1 friendly loss to Burnley. Rice scored an unfortunate own goal in this match to make it 3–1 to Burnley.[29][30]

Robert Olejnik began the season as Torquay's first-choice goalkeeper. Rice was limited to reserve team football, including a 1–0 win against Yeovil Town reserves in which he kept a clean sheet, and the 3-1 loss to Brighton & Hove Albion reserves. He made his competitive debut for Torquay in the Football League Trophy on 30 August 2011 in the Gulls' 2–1 loss to Cheltenham Town.[31]


Truro City
  • Southern Football League Division One South & West 2008–09: Champions
  • Southern League Premier Division 2010–11: Champions
Torquay United


  1. ^ Birth records 1837-2006 - Martin Rice Retrieved 6 November 2011
  2. ^ Sky Sports: Martin Rice Sky Sports Retrieved 4 August 2011
  3. ^ Ling pleased to have 'keeper Rice on board for second stint at Plainmoor This is Devon Retrieved 10 August 2011
  4. ^ Torquay Swoop for Exeter Keeper BBC Sport Retrieved 26 July 2011
  5. ^ Exeter City XI 4 Yeovil Town XI 4 Exeter City F.C. Retrieved 30 July
  6. ^ Martin Rice at Soccerbase Soccerbase Retrieved 26 July 2011.
  7. ^ Torquay United - Team Profiles - Martin Rice Torquay United F.C. Retrieved 30 July 2011
  8. ^ - Ebbsfleet clinch Trophy The F.A. Retrieved 17 August 2011
  9. ^ BBC Sport - Torquay 2-0 York BBC Sport Retrieved 17 August 2011
  10. ^ BBC Sport - York City 1-0 Torquay United (1-2) BBC Sport Retrieved 17 August 2011
  11. ^ - Rice agrees new Torquay Contract Retrieved 11 August 2011
  12. ^ BBC Sport BBC Sport Retrieved 10 August 2011
  13. ^ Rice agrees new deal This is Devon Retrieved 10 August 2011
  14. ^ Martin Rice Profile Retrieved 30 July 2011
  15. ^ Truro City sow the seeds of promotion Falmouth Packet Retrieved 06 August 2011
  16. ^ Highbeam - Martin Rice Retrieved 10 August 2011
  17. ^ Rice bubbling after Gulls switch Retrieved 30 July 2011
  18. ^ Truro City beat Banbury United to secure promotion BBC Sport Retrieved 30 July 2011
  19. ^ Extra time pays Rice This is Cornwall Retrieved 30 July 2011
  20. ^ Blue Square Bet South round-up Sport 4 Salisbury Retrieved 06 August 2011
  21. ^ Falmouth Town beat Truro City in Aubrey Wilkes Trophy Falmouth Packet Retrieved 06 August 2011
  22. ^ Falmouth Packet - Martin Rice Falmouth Packet Retrieved 06 August 2011
  23. ^ Keeper Martin Rice makes Torquay United return BBC Sport Retrieved 26 July 2011.
  24. ^ Martin Rice Football Stats Soccerbase Retrieved 30 July 2011
  25. ^ Rice ready for Gulls challenge This is Devon Retrieved 26 July 2011.
  26. ^ Torquay United - Rice Returns Torquay United F.C. Retrieved 27 July 2011
  27. ^ GULLS 2 BRISTOL CITY 0 Torquay United F.C. Retrieved 27 July 2011
  28. ^ GULLS 3 EXETER 0 Torquay United F.C. Retrieved 04 August 2011
  29. ^ GULLS 1 BURNLEY 3 Torquay United F.C. Retrieved 11 August 2011
  30. ^ Ole Ole - Martin Rice Retrieved 11 August 2011
  31. ^ Cheltenham Town 2-1 Torquay United This is South DevonRetrieved 31 August 2011

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