Iain Hume arrived at Preston North End in 2010 having gone through some great early years as a professional footballer, but also some massive lows that he needed to recover from.
The Canadian striker scored lots of goals for Tranmere Rovers and Leicester City as a younger player, but it was an incident when he played for Barnsley that gained him unfortunate notoriety.
Hume was on the end of a terrible elbow from Sheffield United’s Chris Morgan in 2008 which left him with both a fractured skull and internal bleeding, but he did return nine months later to resume his career, and in 2010 he joined Preston North End.
He instantly became a fan favourite at Deepdale because of his work rate but also goals, and in his first season he netted 12 goals in the Championship but was unable to help keep PNE in the second tier of English football as they were relegated.
The Edinburgh-born forward did score nine goals in League One the following season, but he was frozen out in the summer of 2012 by Graham Westley and was sent on loan to Doncaster Rovers in the same league, where they were able to win promotion to the second tier as Preston remained in League One.
Hume was actually given a bit of a North End reprieve by Simon Grayson in 2013, but in early 2014 he was loaned out to Fleetwood Town and that was the end of his time at Deepdale, having scored 20 goals in 66 appearances for the club – but what’s he done since?
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Becoming a star figure in Indian football probably wouldn’t have been anyone’s first prediction when Hume left Preston, but that’s exactly what happened.
Hume was snapped up as a 31-year-old for Kerala Blasters in the inaugural season of the Indian Super League, and playing against classy veterans like former Man City midfielder Elano, Hume was still able to win the ISL Player of the Year after five goals in 16 games.
He then returned to his boyhood club Tranmere for the rest of the 2014/15 season before returning to India once again for a further two seasons – this time with Kolkata and he was prolific by scoring 18 times in 30 games, also winning the ‘Fittest Player of the Year‘ award which is remarkable considering he was 33 at the time.
Hume then took another trip overseas to Spanish side Extremadura in 2017 before yet again going back to India and specifically back to Kerala, where he is worshipped as ‘Humettan’, and he replicated his first season at the club by scoring five goals in 13 outings, but he departed as a hero as Goal eulogises.
Pune City then snapped him up for the 2018-19 campaign, and that was less prolific as he scored just once in 10 games, and as of now that was his final game.
He told the Undr The Cosh podcast with former Preston team-mates Chris Brown and Jon Parkin in mid-2020 that he was still looking for a club in his late 30’s, but he’s found a new role back in Canada.
Hume has returned to the nation that he grew up in and in September he took up a ‘guest head coach’ role at Woodstock FC, which seem to be a community team to help young players develop.
He hasn’t yet found a team to play for again, but at the age of 37, Hume hasn’t retired just yet – there’s every chance he still has a year or two left in the legs.