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David James

David James
 
Complete Name: David Benjamin James
Nationality: English
Place of Birth: Welwyn Garden City, England
Date of Birth: 01/08/1970
Height: 194 cm
Weight: 95 kg
National Team: England
Current Club: Manchester City (England)
Position: Goalkeeper
 

Pictures

Picture 1 Picture 2 Picture 3

Club career history

Watford (England), Liverpool FC (England), Aston Villa (England), West Ham United (England), Manchester City (England)
 

Honours

2000 FA Cup Finals (Aston Villa)
 

Biography

David James (born August 1, 1970 in Welwyn Garden City, England) is an English football goalkeeper, currently playing for Manchester City.

James signed as a trainee with Watford, winning the FA Youth Cup and making 98 first-team appearances. In 1992 he was signed by Liverpool, but after conceding 20 goals in 11 games he was dropped by Liverpool boss Graeme Souness.

James found favour under Souness' successor Roy Evans, and became a regular in Liverpool's team of the 1990s. James rose to fame together with Steve McManaman and Robbie Fowler, but was black listed together with them at the time for their collective culture of being "Spice Boys" - a derogatory term that signified the team of that decade as underachieving playboys in the game. Indeed, more than any one of that group except for perhaps Jamie Redknapp, James epitomised the whole idea of 'Spice Boy' who was labelled as 'unfocused' and 'inconsistent' after being more involved in modelling with Armani rather than their professional work. James later said that the modelling affairs were blown out of proportion and that he only flew to Milan for the catwalk or for fashion shoots on a Monday and would be back the next day in training, with the approval of then coach Roy Evans.

However, according to an article by Stephen Thanabalan, failure to win trophies and live up to the group's assumed potential exacerbated the situation and compounded with their off the pitch lad culture lifestyles, set critics pouncing on what was termed a 'collective culture of underachievement'. Despite winning the League Cup in 1995, Liverpool's side at the time had failed to oust rivals Manchester United as England's Premier club - what with the club's poor defensive record, and James' occasional high-profile mistakes, often highlighted as howlers in the tabloids at the time, with James not aiding the situation when in 1997 he publicly put down his spate of errors to a rather bemusing excuse of "playing too many computer games" that affected his concentration.

His reputation for making mistakes inspired his nickname Calamity James, which stuck from the late 1990s till today and is based on Calamity Jane. Some people feel that this nickname is unjustified and he has just been unlucky.

With the arrival of American Brad Friedel, his place at Liverpool became less assured, and in 1999 he was sold to Aston Villa.

At Villa, James' inconsistency continued; he proved to be the hero in saving penalties against Bolton Wanderers in a 2000 FA Cup semi-final, but then being to blame for Chelsea's winning goal in the ensuing final.

James moved to West Ham United in summer 2001, where his consistency improved, but he was unable to help the club avert relegation from the Premier League in 2003. In January 2004, he returned to the Premier League, signing for Manchester City. James helped the club stay up that season with two crucial penalty saves towards the end of the season.

James has played 30 times for England, making his debut in a friendly against Mexico in 1997. For several years, however, he had to play understudy to England's regular keeper, David Seaman. When Seaman was dropped after making a mistake against Macedonia in 2002, James became the new England No. 1, and played in all England's matches in Euro 2004. However, James has not started a competitive match for England since an error in a 2-2 draw against Austria in September 2004, his place being taken by Paul Robinson. After the 4-1 friendly defeat against Denmark on 17 August 2005, with James conceding all four goals as a second half substitute, James has been surpassed by Robinson as England's top keeper. He is, however, still a member of the England squad. He has played for his country 33 times. He has also been given a new lease of life by Stuart Pearce, his manager at Man City, who played him as a striker for the last few minutes of the 2004-2005 season. It remains to be seen whether this was yet another turning point in an already eventful career.

During the 2004 off-season, James was a guest at the training camp of American football team the Miami Dolphins where he worked out with the team and studied their training and conditioning methods, which has led some to suggest he is keen on a coaching role once retired from playing.
 

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