A late cameo appearance by Mark Wright, star of British reality series ‘The Only Way is Essex’, rubbed some considerable salt into the wounds of Premier League side Leeds United as they were sent packing by the FA Cup minnows.

League Two outfit Crawley claimed a sensational scalp of Bielsa’s highly-praised Leeds side on Sunday after a trio of second-half strikes from Nick Tsaroulla, Ashley Nadesan and Jordan Tunnicliffe secured an unexpected 3-0 win for John Yems’ side.


Crawley Town subbing on 33 year old reality TV star Mark Wright in the 90th minute to see out a 3-0 win over Leeds is superb shithousery.

Being 3-0 down to a League 2 team who are bringing someone off TOWIE on for a 5 minute cameo must be truly demoralising

Crawley’s win was made all the more impressive (though, perhaps not to Leeds fans) by the late substitute appearance of Mark Wright, a figure perhaps better known to UK TV audiences as one of the primary cast-members of the hit reality series ‘The Only Way is Essex’.

Wright, 33, who was on Crawley’s books during the 2006-07 season before ditching the beautiful game in favor of chasing a career in show-business, agreed to a non-contract deal with the club in December but wasn’t expected to make much of an impression on first-team affairs – before Yems decided to blood his new player in injury time against the Premier League side. 

A post shared by Mark Wright (@wrighty_)

A post shared by michkeegan (@michkeegan)

A post shared by Mark Wright (@wrighty_)

Despite not getting many touches of the ball, Wright, who plays at left-back and has been a regular in the ‘Soccer Aid’ charity series, will no doubt be proud of helping his team to what is their most momentous victory in several seasons. However, some fans are throwing a stick in the mud and saying that Wright’s late cameo will overshadow the performances of his teammates who largely engineered the historic 3-0 win. 

Feel sorry for the Crawley players who have been brilliant today and everybody will be talking about the sideshow Mark Wright…

Poor Bielsa assistant who had to watch 26 series of The Only Way Is Essex in preparation for today’s game.

Mark Wright, knocks Leeds out the FA Cup then goes home to Michelle Keegan, a winner of life.

If some fans are bemoaning Wright’s signing as little more than a publicity stunt, they likely have a point. He currently boasts more than 1.7 million Instagram followers – a figure which far outstrips the 16,900 fans that Crawley Town have on the social media platform – and is married Coronation Street actress Michelle Keegan, factors which Crawley bosses are hoping will swell the support at their People’s Pension Stadium once they are granted permission to allow fan attendance once again. 

Wright, who was released by Tottenham as a youngster, has been a mainstay in UK television circles, also appearing on shows like ‘I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here’ and ‘Take Me Out: The Gossip’, and may soon add a brief appearance on BBC’s ‘Match of the Day’ to his resume before all is said and done.