Ex-Bristol City star David Noble faces jail for nightclub assault
A FORMER Bristol City attacking midfielder faces a jail term after he punched a man who suffered a broken jaw in a city centre bar.
David Noble, 30, appeared at Bristol Crown Court yesterday and pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm to Tim Winterbottom at Java nightclub in Park Street on March 18.
Noble, pictured, of Sanford Place, Exeter, pleaded not guilty to assault by beating of Francisco Zaragoza and his denial was accepted by the Crown Prosecution Service.
Judge Martin Picton confirmed that the basis of Noble's plea was that he threw a punch as part of a joint enterprise, which resulted in Mr Winterbottom's broken jaw.
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Mark Haslam, defending, said: "It is impossible to say which blow caused the fracture. He struck a blow."
Judge Picton adjourned the case for sentence and granted Noble bail.
He said: "All options are open to the sentencing judge, including the possibility of a custodial sentence."
Hitchin-born Noble left Ashton Gate in 2010 to join Exeter City, and currently plays for Rotherham United. He started his career as a trainee at Premier League side Arsenal, and also had spells at Watford and West Ham before joining City in January 2006 after a loan spell.
He played his part in some of the most memorable matches for Robins fans when Gary Johnson was manager. He scored twice in the home match against Rotherham which sealed automatic promotion to the Championship in the final home game of the 2006/7 season, sparking a pitch invasion by nearly 20,000 fans at Ashton Gate.
The following season he scored a vital goal at Selhurst Park as City beat Crystal Palace in the Championship play-off semi-final.