Former footballer David James will be showing off his dance skills on Strictly Come Dancing 2019, after becoming the first celebrity confirmed for this year’s line-up.
The ex-England goalkeeper was confirmed on Wednesday night’s edition of The One Show alongside comedian Chris Ramsey and EastEnders actress Emma Barton – while YouTuber Saffron Barker has also joined the show.
David – who was previously tipped for the series last year – played in 572 top-level matches during his career, and was capped 53 times by England between 1997 and 2010 – and most recently worked as a player-manager in India at Kerala Blasters.
He’s also found fame as a pundit on BT Sport – and is no stranger to reality TV, having appeared on The Great Sport Relief Bake Off in 2016.
However he’s not always been in the news for the right reasons, with his personal life also hitting the headlines at times.
Here’s what you need to know about David.
Who did David James play for during his career?
The goalkeeper began his career at Watford before moving to Liverpool – and also played at West Ham and Manchester City, the latter seeing him swapping the goal for a role as a striker.
He also played for Portsmouth in a side which won the FA Cup, as well as Bristol City and Bournemouth – while overseas he had stints at Kerala Blaster and Icelandic side IBV Vestmannaeyja.
Despite being known as one of England’s best goalkeepers, it was 2010 before he actually played in a World Cup, joining the squad in South Africa that year.
He made his debut in their first-round match against Algeria – becoming the oldest ever debutant in the tournament at the age of 39 years and 321 days.
He was made an MBE in 2012.
Is David James married and does he have children?
David was previously married to wife Tanya, with whom he had four children.
However the couple divorced in 2005.
He was declared bankrupt in 2014 after debts piled up following his divorce, with David auctioning football memorabilia – including signed shirts and match balls, as well as personal items including bikes and exercise equipment – later that year.
What has David said about joining Strictly?
David was the first person announced for this year’s line-up and admitted the pressure was on when it came to matching the track record of sports stars on the show.
“I’m really excited to be on Strictly this year. Not just competing against this year’s stars, but being compared to previous sport stars from previous Strictly seasons,’ he said. ‘I have some big shoes to fill, #LetsGetLive”.’
When does Strictly Come Dancing 2019 start?
The series kicks off on BBC One in the autumn.
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