This Weeks Focus : Shay Given
April 5 2009
The current Manchester City Goalkeeper and Ireland Number one, is the focus of our attention this week as we detail his career, with some highlights, low lights and some interesting stats.
Born Seamus John James Given, Shay as he is now known, was born in Lifford Co. Donegal on the 20th of April in 1976. A Celtic fan as a boy, he began his career with his local amateur side Lifford Celtic. It was at the age of 14, playing in an FAI junior cup semi final that he was spotted, and attracted the attention of his favoured club. Celtic took him along to train with their youth team during a pre season tour of Ireland. A year later, he signed for then manager Liam Brady. Unfortunatly, Given neer saw a first team appearance for them, but his perfromances for the youth team caught the eye of Kenny Dalglish, who signed him for Blackburn in 1994 on a free transfer.
A bad time to join Blackburn, as then England International Tim Flowers had just won the Premiership title with them, and he was unable to remove Flowers from between the sticks. He was subsequently loaned out to Swindon Town, and then to Sunderland. Starring 17 times with 12 clean sheets, he helped Sunderland win the league, and promotion to the Premiership. Now with Newcastle United, Kenny Dalglish once more took note of Given's quality, and signed him for £1.5 million for the north east club.
Given proceeded to shake off the challenges of Pavel Srnicek, Shaka Hislop and Steve Harper. He remained between the posts , with a minor blip of a written transfer request in 2000, until the 5th of February 2009, when he finally left, a now shaken club, to join the multi millions of Manchester City in an initial £5.9 million deal.
On the International side of things, he debuted on the 23rd of March in 1996 against Russia. By 2002 Given had firmly staked his claim as number one for the Republic and starred in all the 2002 World Cup games only to be kocked out on penalties by Spain in the second round. Failing to qualify for World Cup 2006, he still equalled Packie Bonner's appearance record of 80 caps in March 2007.
1995-1996 Football League First Division
FA Cup Runner Up 1998,1999
Intertoto Cup Winner 2006-2007pqs: qs:
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