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I don't know if many of you have been to football365, but I just read this article there and found it quite interesting coming from David Icke!


THE demolition of David James after Saturday’s FA Cup Final is a disgrace.

The guy has had a fantastic season, deservedly gets back in the England squad – and yet now he is pilloried for one mistake and one that was nothing like as bad as it has been portrayed, either.

Joe Melling in the Mail on Sunday produced a typical reaction: “It may be cruel, it may even be harsh, but now he is condemned to be forever remembered as 'Calamity James'. Yes, Joe, you are probably right, but it shows just how grotesquely efficient your industry has become at labelling people for eternity on the basis of sometimes a single incident or error.

Once the media comes up with what it believes is a good headline or 'tag', it can’t contain its enthusiasm for finding ways to constantly repeat and confirm it. A mild example: How many times did you see the headline “Worthy Winner” or “Worthy goal” during the career of Leicester and Huddersfield’s, Frank Worthington? Over and over it was repeated, week after week and I’m sure they all thought they were being original every time. Once “James” and “Calamity” were brought together, a very fine keeper was tagged for life.

Other goalkeepers can make mistakes, as they all do, but every one James has made since his one bad spell at Liverpool has been jumped upon and highlighted with the same boring, boring, headline. After Saturday, it was "Oh Calamity, It’s Another Clanger". Another since when? Last week, last month, when he had a confidence crisis at Liverpool?

The man has been Mr Consistency all season. Even his boss, John Gregory, calls him one of the world’s best goalkeepers and he sees him every week. If you allow for a manager’s exaggeration, you are still looking at a guy who can play at the highest level.

But the media just love to put people in a box and then keep nailing down the lid. One box, for example, is labelled “Beckham is thick” and so over and over… yawn, yawn… we have to keep being told that Beckham is thick. Ironic given that many of the journalists who relish in this Beckham baiting do not have brain cell activity themselves that would in any way trouble the Richter Scale.

The truth is never black and white; it is always, but always, a shade of grey. Yet the media reports the world in black and white. Hence it presents a travesty of the truth on every subject, no middle ground, no subtlety, no if or buts. Do you want black or do you want white? Take yer choice.

So it was at Wembley. Joe Melling, one of better reporters normally, wrote of “...an innocuous free kick” which turned James into “a squidgy mass of butter fingers”. Exactly what “a squidgy mass of butter fingers” could possibly look like I can’t imagine, but the free kick was anything but “innocuous”. It was, in fact, the worst kind of cross a goalkeeper can face. It was struck very hard and, crucially, it came over at head-height, so removing the goalkeeper's arm-advantage. James had to make six yards to meet the ball, while Chelsea players were already standing where the ball was targeted. The six-yard box was packed and James had to make an instant decision. Even then, he made enough contact to block the immediate danger and on most other days he would have got away with it. Unfortunately, the ball hit Southgate, dropped to Di Matteo, and bang, one-nil.

James immediately and visibly accepted responsibility, perhaps too obviously because it helped to concentrate the media on the scapegoat they so love to identify in all circumstances. Yes, it was an error, of course it was, by the standards of a Premiership keeper of James’ quality. But a terrible error, a schoolboy error, a “calamity” error? Utter nonsense. He failed to make a clean contact in very difficult circumstances, but because only black and white will do, it has to be reported in that way. The truth is too complex, too subtle, when you have a good headline going to waste.

Another fact, which hardly helps in situations like this, is that journalists, commentators, and even so many outfield pundits, know so little about goalkeeping (Andy Gray, usually, an honorable exception). Every week I see keepers praised for “magnificent” saves when I would stop the same shot myself even now at 48 with arthritic hands.

I mean, if I am standing there minding my own business and a bullet header hits me in the chest or smacks me on the side of my face, it could hardly be construed a “wonder save”. But I have heard these descriptions for stops that the goalkeeper could not help but make unless, in some way, the ball could pass through him. On other occasions, exceptional goalkeeping goes by without a mention and keepers are said to have “no chance” with goals they should have stopped quite comfortably.

Like most “beliefs” that people have, and the media perpetuate, they are based on little knowledge and no research, just a vague image. As a result of media headlines, for instance, people will have an image of David James that he is a comic keeper who is always making mistakes, when he is an outstanding natural talent. Ironically, people also believe that the original Calamity Jane must have been accident-prone or something. Well, it stands to reason, doesn’t it? They called her “Calamity”, so she must have been associated with things going wrong.

Anyone ever checked?

Thought so.

Calamity Jane (real name Martha Jane Burke, née Cannary) was, in fact, not prone to accidents at all. When she bravely saved the life of a Captain Egan during an ambush by Native Americans at Goose Creek, Wyoming, he said as they rode off to safety: “I name you Calamity Jane, the heroine of the plains.''

Yet Martha Jane Cannary, the heroine of the plains, is forever associated with calamities because no-one does any research into her background. David James, a hero for Aston Villa this season, is forever associated with calamities because only his mistakes are remembered and James and calamity make a great tabloid headline. As with the tabloids, so with life: the headline, the one-liner, is far more important than the story and the substance behind it. But then to write substance, I guess you have to possess it yourself.

David James is the best English goalkeeping talent since Peter Shilton. Yes he has his faults, yes he has his mental demons which have crashed his confidence from time to time and he was short of his brilliant best on Saturday. But a comic keeper? You must be joking and if he doesn’t go to Euro 2000 it will be a travesty. He is the natural successor to the Seaman-Martyn generation and not to take him would be a woeful lack of judgement. He is a better keeper than both of them, actually (much as I admire Martyn’s performances for Leeds), but his psyche has let him down.

This experience at Wembley can make him or break him. Get your head up, David. You are a rare talent. Now let's see if you have a rare character to match. Get off the floor and look the world in the eye. It is what YOU think of you that matters, not tomorrow’s chip wrappers.
 

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One mistake all match and the press will ruin the guy. The fact is that he is English and they have to knock them down. Look at Casillas, great talent but crap on crosses yet the media over here see him as the best thing since sliced bread.
Other examples are Macca - never played well in an England shirt eh? Well do they ****ing remember Euro 96 where he was in the team of the tournament even when plying out of position.
Shearer, Owen, Fowler...........
 
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I thought this was the LIVERPOOL page for christs sake.

Wake up and smell the coffee guys.

David James didn't just make ONE mistake in that game, he made several. The truth is only one of them ended up as a goal conceeded.

He is a good keeper, but to say he is anything near the best in the world is utterly ridiculous.

At liverpool he was an excellent shop stopper but terrible at crosses, not just during his "calamity" days but right throughout his time there. The "calamity" tag only came about because he did it in important games that cost Liverpool dearly. In fact he'd been doing it for years and is still doing it now.

The guy is a liability and I am glad we got rid of him when we did.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Where did anybody but David Icke say David James was world class?
All I did is post the article for others to read.
My opinions are that James is a good Goalie, but suffers from lapses of concentration at crucial times. He was also hindered at Liverpool by playing behind the likes of Kvarme, Babb and Scales! Behind a good defencee you can judge him better, and villa have a good defence. The statistics do not lie, he has been in sparkling form all season and is rightly called up to the England squad. Yes, for me he'd still be 3rd choice, but he deserves his spot in the squad.
 

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James has been trying to convince people that he has improved, but he's still the same - it just that he is playing behind a better defence at Villa.

He may not be as "good" (?) as he is now even if he's still at Liverpool though. A new environment was all he needed, he got it and excelled slightly, but then again proved that his mistakes were no flukes by bottling it in the FA Cup Final again. Cantona anyone?
 

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Sorry mate, as much as I'd like to agree the guy is a total tosser and I can't belive anyone actually bought him from us, let alone pick him for England.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
M, Each to their own as they say, that's the beauty of this game everyone has their own opinions! :)
 
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