Andrew Ronald Edward “Drew” Surman (born 20 August 1986) is a South African-born English footballer, who plays as a midfielder for Bournemouth. He spent the first five years of his career with Southampton where he played more than 100 games and has also played for Wolverhampton Wanderers
and had a spell on loan at Walsall.
Surman was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, where his parents had moved to from Britain, whilst his father worked for an insurance company. His parents returned to Southampton in 1995, and he joined Tyro League club Hedge End Rangers, where he was spotted by Southampton scouts and invited to join the Saints academy. He attended St. Mary’s College in Bitterne and captained the football team.He was the youngest player ever to play for the Saints Reserves until Theo Walcott took his record. He scored on his league debut when on loan to Walsall during the 2004–05 season, and, when he rejoined the Saints at the beginning of the 2005–06 season, he performed well on their pre-season tour of Scotland. He then enjoyed a successful loan spell with Bournemouth between August 2005 and January 2006, playing in every league game for the team, and scoring six goals. He might have figured in Southampton’s FA Cup tie against MK Dons, but was cup-tied having played earlier in the season for Bournemouth against Tamworth.
He made his full team debut for Southampton on 25 January 2006 under new manager George Burley at home to Crystal Palace, and in the next league game scored his first Southampton goal in a 2–1 defeat againstPlymouth Argyle. On 17 February 2007, he scored a hat-trick (two strikes from outside the penalty box and a penalty) in the 5–2 victory over Barnsley.
He became a vital part of the Southampton first team over the 2006–07 Season, and was a part of their unsuccessful play-off bid, losing on penalties to Derby County after a 4–4 aggregate draw, where his great strike wasn’t enough to take Saints to Wembley.
Surman joined newly promoted Premier League side Wolverhampton Wanderers in a three-year deal, plus another year’s option, for a fee worth around £1.2m on 1 July 2009. Following his move to Wolves, Surman expressed his sadness of leaving Southampton and described the club’s plight as ‘unbelievable’.
He made his debut on 18 August 2009 against Wigan Athletic, coming on for Greg Halford. Surman made his first Premier League start on 21 November 2009 against Chelsea, but struggled to hold down a first team place, making just nine appearances in total for the club.
Surman signed for newly promoted Championship side Norwich City on 22 June 2010 in a three-year deal for an undisclosed fee. He made his debut on 6 August 2010 in the 3–2 defeat to Watford at Carrow Road. After an impressive start to his Norwich City career, he sustained a knee injury in training, two days before the 2–1 victory over Barnsley on 11 September 2010. He returned to action against Leeds United on 20 November in a 1–1 draw. He was subbed on 60 minutes. He suffered a re-occurrence of the injury in the 4–1 victory over Ipswich which sidelined him till February 2011. To improve his fitness, Surman played 65 mins in the Norfolk Senior Cup match against Dereham. He made 3 appearances off the bench for the first team before making his first start in the 2–0 victory over Barnsley, playing the full 90 minutes. He scored his first goal for Norwich in a 3–1 win against Bristol City. On 15 April 2011, Surman scored the winning goal in a 2–1 win over Nottingham Forest. The following week, Surman scored the opener in the 5–1 win over Ipswich Town at Portman Road on 21 April 2011. At the end of the season, Norwich City was promoted to the Premier League after six years absent.
Surman played in three out of the opening four Premier League fixtures before losing his place, with manager Paul Lambert choosing to play a 4–2–3–1 formation, with Surman as an unused substitute, before returning to the starting line-up at the end of November. On 20 December 2011, he scored the opening goal againstWolverhampton Wanderers with a header in a 2–2 draw. On 14 January 2012, he scored the opening goal against West Bromwich Albion with a left-footed shot in a 2–1 win. On 4 February, he scored the opening goal against Bolton Wanderers with a right-footed shot in a 2–0 win. Surman believes that making more appearances in the Premier League is making him produce the best performances of his career. On 14 April 2012, he scored the only goal in the match for Norwich in a 6–1 defeat byManchester City. After the match, Surman said that the defeat to Manchester City would turn things around to winning ways for Norwich by the end of the season.
After Norwich survived in the Premier League, Surman signed a new three-year deal which will keep him at the club until 2015 and said: “It feels great. It’s an honour for me to sign another contract at Norwich City. I’ve really enjoyed my time here and I’m looking forward to another three years at the club, It has been amazing. Everyone keeps talking about these last three years at the club, winning two promotions and then staying in the Premier League.”. After starting the new season in the team, Surman was ruled out of first team action from October till the New Year after suffering a knee injury in training.
On 31 July 2013, AFC Bournemouth confirmed that they have completed the signing of Surman on a one-year loan deal. On 1 September 2014, Surman completed a permanent move to the club.
Although qualified to play for South Africa, he was selected for the England U21 team for the European Championship qualifiers away to Montenegro on 7 September and Bulgaria on 11 September. In the match against Montenegro he came on as a second-half substitute and scored the final goal in a 3–0 victory, tapping the ball home in stoppage time from a knock-down by former Saints’ trainee Dexter Blackstock. In September 2012, Surman said that he had been “approached” to see if he was interested to play for South Africa. Though he declined, he said it was a “great honour to be approached”. He went on to say that he has put any international ambitions “on the back burner” as he needs to concentrate fully on club matters and his family. He explained that “it would be a lot, especially with the African Nations Cup, to be travelling around the world.”