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Beasant's guide to ageing goalkeepers
Around the Academy:

David Beasant helped Wimbledon win the FA Cup in 1988
A goalkeeper's life is full of highs and lows

David Beasant gives his thoughts to the Sport Academy

Poor old David Seaman has been on the receiving end for his recent mistakes.

Some have said he's past it but I strongly believe he's still England number one. You're definitely not too old at 39.

Many people are calling for a change, but I don't think there's an age limit to when a keeper should pack it in.

It's just down to the individual and how they work and feel.

I'm 43 and I'm working harder now than ever before. I've just got to maintain my level of fitness and standards.

David James on duty for Liverpool
It was a topsy turvy spell at Liverpool for James
I do weights to retain my muscle strength and on the pitch, I do a lot of ball handling.

Part of this is catching at least 300 balls a day and also doing a load of diving and twisting.

If someone told me to run for two hours, I'd say "no chance". It wouldn't be any good. The best thing for me is explosive fitness.

And you'd think at my age I'd be aching after these sort of sessions.

Well I don't! What's changed since my younger days is my resting habits!

I used to go shopping and play golf after training, but now I'll sit in a hotel with my feet up and relax.

Being a goalkeeper is different to many other sports.

You wouldn't see an outfield player at 43. It's not physically possible.

Many people say goalkeepers peak at 33 or 34. Some of this is because we don't spend the game running around!

But more importantly, you just get better with experience.

David Beasant in action for Nottingham Forest
Is there a safer pair of hands than Beasant's?

I don't get into so many awkward situations these days because my experience tells me what to do.

People used to criticise David James when he was at Liverpool.

He's 6 foot 4 inches tall and felt he had to go for every cross. But now he's got plenty of games under his belt and he's making better decisions.

Richard Wright's another one who suffered heavy criticism after giving away two penalties against Malta in 2000.

I've made plenty of mistakes as a keeper. No keeper is different and it's the same for Seaman.

But he'll know when to give up. And it's the same with me.

If there was a crisis at a club, I know I'm fit enough and confident enough in my ability to give it a go.

It's nothing to do with age. It's all hard work and determination.

Dave is currently at Wigan Athletic and also assisting in coaching young goalkeepers with ISM.


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Too old, not too old
Beasant's backing
Doctor's orders

Dave's facts
Born: 20.3.59 in Ealing, London
Height: 6ft 4in
Most expensive fee: 800,000 to Newcastle in 1988
Honours: Won FA Cup with Wimbledon in 1988

Did you know?
Dave is currently playing for Bradford. This is the 11th club he has played for

Open Quote
You'd think at my age I'd be aching after these sort of sessions
Close Quote
Dave Beasant has plenty of goalkeeping experience
Dave Beasant
Bradford keeper



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