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BBC BREAKFAST WITH FROST INTERVIEW
DAVID SEAMAN ENGLAND GOALKEEPER SEPTEMBER 17TH, 2000 Please note "BBC Breakfast with Frost" must be credited if any part of this transcript is used

DAVID FROST
The English football team were back in action, back in action facing the current World Champions, France. Given the disappointment of the Euro 2000 Championship a draw against, arguably, well yes I think probably almost definitely the best team in the world with the exception of Arsenal which I'll come to in a minute, was seen as a pretty good result. Guarding the goal as he's been for most England fixtures in the past five years was the giant frame of David Seaman. I'll be talking to the England goalie after this from Dominic Cotton. [FILM CLIP]

DAVID FROST
Well, well, well, there it is, David Seaman and he's here right now, he's got a new autobiography, or it's his autobiography, it's his first, it's not a new autobiography, it's called inevitably, Safe Hands, his slogan, David Seaman is here this morning and we start with one of the most vital football issues of all time, what's with the ponytail, how's it been received?

DAVID SEAMAN
Not too bad, it's, it keeps the hair out my eyes so.

DAVID FROST
Keeps the hair out of your eyes?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah just for match days though.

DAVID FROST
Oh really.

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah.

DAVID FROST
Oh I see, for tactical, tactical reason for it and so on, you say in the book that, that the first time you ever played for your junior school, you let in 14 goals?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yes just the 14 yeah, we lost 26-0, so¿that was one half by the way as well.

DAVID FROST
Oh so that was, what a memorable, what a memorable moment. What's been the greatest thrill of your career, was it Euro '96 or was it the Cup Winner's Cup?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah obviously with England it's going to be Euro '96 because you know we achieved quite a lot and the effect it had on the country was fantastic but within the, the European Cup with Arsenal was, was great too.

DAVID FROST
And you, you say it's clear that the press, the tabloids, the press, can, can get to you, got to the team a bit at Euro 2000 and you almost felt as though they weren't on England's side?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah it does sometimes make you wonder because we had it before, before Euro '96, we had the episode in Hong Kong where you know the press were after us and the press were trying to single one person out and it's all negative press, you know it's not positive press and who knows that might be the difference.

DAVID FROST
And you think that Paul Gascoigne for instance has been mistreated?

DAVID SEAMAN
Oh yeah I think possibly, yeah.

DAVID FROST
He really¿

DAVID SEAMAN
He's a fantastic talent and in Euro '96 he showed that and before that as well, but you know he's just been hounded and hounded.

DAVID FROST
Well let's, let's take a look at you in action here, this is, this is a, this is a game against Portugal, which game was this, the?

DAVID SEAMAN
This is in Euro 2000.

DAVID FROST
Yes this was Euro 2000, that match against Portugal and here is the man himself in action. This was a very good save. [FILM CLIP]

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah that was quite early on in the game as well and you know we got a good lead up and then regretfully we, we lost it.

DAVID FROST
Now what's the key, the key obviously you say is different, with a penalty shoot out you, you have to watch the player a lot¿

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah.

DAVID FROST
To gauge which way he's going to shoot, but the rest of the game you have to watch the ball?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah you've got to watch the ball because if you watch the players, the players nowadays, they throw dummies and all sorts of things so they can send you the wrong way. But obviously with a penalty it's only going to go one or two ways so it's¿a bit easier.

DAVID FROST
So there you were watching the ball.

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah.

DAVID FROST
In this second example, this was a shoot out, in fact against Spain, this must therefore be '96, and here, there he comes up, and that was a wonderful save, we saw that earlier. Now at what point did you know which way to go, there you are again, but do you know now?

DAVID SEAMAN
About there, yeah. Yeah it's the angle at which he runs up to the ball that dictates to me which way I'm going to dive.

DAVID FROST
I see so¿

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah.

DAVID FROST
And the angle¿

DAVID SEAMAN
I don't want to give too much away.

DAVID FROST
No, no, I know, I don't want you to because you've got some important games coming up and so on. The worst moment of your career I suppose, apart from the junior team was when Eddie Grey called you into his office at Leeds, you were 18 years and 11 months old and you, you thought you were doing pretty well with the reserves¿

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah that's right.

DAVID FROST
And the youth team and then, then what happened?

DAVID SEAMAN
Well like you say I thought I was doing okay, I thought right, you know it was a good season in the reserves and then all of a sudden Eddie Grey called me in and said that was it, you know he says I want a more experienced goalkeeper and, and to me my world had caved in, I didn't know what to do. You know I went home, I was crying and all sorts and I was going to become a baker's delivery boy or carry on my, my Saturday job and luckily I got a chance.

DAVID FROST
Peterborough, Birmingham, QPR and then Arsenal.

DAVID SEAMAN
Yes.

DAVID FROST
You, you worked obviously under George Graham at Arsenal, Arsene Wenger must be very, very different obviously, on things like diet for instance?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yes, massively.

DAVID FROST
How, how is he different?

DAVID SEAMAN
He's massively different not just on diet but on training and stretching routines and even tactical play you know with George we did hit a lot of long balls but it was geared to certain areas of the pitch. But with Arsene it's, it's total football, you know he wants us to play football all the time.

DAVID FROST
And his English was okay when he got here and it's now, as one sees on Match of the Day, pretty well perfect isn't it?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah it's a lot better, yeah and a lot of the French players that have come over, they've picked it up really well too.

DAVID FROST
One of the nightmares of a goalkeeper is a nutmeg isn't it, explain, explain that, what that means before we see it?

DAVID SEAMAN
Well a nutmeg is when a goalkeeper sets themselves, that's a different one though, I'm expecting Tony Dorigo to clear this off the post.

DAVID FROST
Yes.

DAVID SEAMAN
And he totally misses it, as you can see, and he catches me by surprise. But you set yourself¿

DAVID FROST
That's not a classic nutmeg, is what, when you're one-on-one?

DAVID SEAMAN
When you're one-or-one but you have to set yourself so your feet are slightly apart otherwise you can't, you know you can't get the spring from either side and sometimes the forwards put it in there. I've seen Fabian Barthez got beat too by one yesterday.

DAVID FROST
And you, you say that you'd like to see some changes in the game, there have been a hell of a lot of changes in the game while you've been playing it?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yes.

DAVID FROST
In the book you mentioned no goalkeeper substitutes in those days, no play-offs, no back passes, allowed back passes. No Mr Bosman when you started, all through that¿lighter balls¿everything else like that. But you, there are changes you'd like to see and stuff, you'd like to see professional referees wouldn't you?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah definitely, yeah. I am sure there can be something done with the offside rule as well, because there's nothing more frustrating than a guy being a yard offside in the, in their own half, you know it's, a lot of people that are watching the game and thinking well, well why has that been stopped, you know, if they put a line half way between the centres, the halfway line and the goal line, maybe that may make a bit of difference.

DAVID FROST
What about video evidence, do you, are you in favour of that?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah I am, I'm definitely in favour of it for a goal, you know when a ball's got, when a ball's gone over the line we need to know that it's over the line because that's what the game's about, it's about scoring goals. Although as a goalkeeper I hate that.

DAVID FROST
And you'd like to limit the number of foreign players if it can be done legally?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah I think that's going to be, that would be better for England, you know for English players as well.

DAVID FROST
And how long are you going to go on playing for?

DAVID SEAMAN
Well I'm, I'm¿

DAVID FROST
Bob Wilson says you can carry on 'til 40?

DAVID SEAMAN
Yeah maybe, but I'm, I'm 37 on, on Tuesday so, you know we'll see, I've been, the World Cup's a great target for me.

DAVID FROST
But I mean you wouldn't, you wouldn't go to a first divisional club and a second divisional club, you'll, when you decide to go you'll go, is that right?

DAVID SEAMAN
I should imagine so, yes because I came up through that, I came up through the fourth, the second, the first and I know what all that's like and I don't want to go back down there.

DAVID FROST
Well we wish you all the best of luck, it's a joy to have you here. Good luck with the book as well. A joy, always a joy to have you with us, very nice to have you on the couch, usually you're, you're somewhere abroad waiting for a game in two day's time and down the line. And so the ponytail stays for matches?

DAVID SEAMAN
It stays just for matches, yes.

DAVID FROST
Carina wanted to know that.

DAVID SEAMAN
Ah right.

DAVID FROST
Right thank you very much indeed, David Seaman.

END

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