James Harper (footballer)
Harper playing for Hull City in 2011
|Full name||James Alan John Harper|
|Date of birth||9 November 1980|
|Place of birth||Chelmsford, England|
|Height||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
|2000–2001||→ Cardiff City (loan)||3||(0)|
|2009–2010||→ Sheffield United (loan)||21||(3)|
|2012||→ Wycombe Wanderers (loan)||5||(0)|
|2016||Hayes & Yeading United||15||(1)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 21:40, 25 October 2019 (UTC)|
Born in Chelmsford, Essex, Harper attended the Anglo European School in Ingatestone, Essex. He started his career as a trainee with Arsenal, but as his first team opportunities were limited, he first went on loan to Cardiff City, before signing permanently for Reading for an undisclosed fee said to be "a substantial six-figure fee" at the end of February 2001.
James had a real impact at Reading including playing a key role in a number of promotions and single handled defeat of Liverpool in Reading's only ever win over one of the premier leagues big four. After helping Reading to win the 2005–06 Football League Championship, and thus win promotion to the Premier League, he scored his first Premiership goals for Reading in a clash with Newcastle United at St James' Park, scoring twice despite losing 3–2.
Harper joined Sheffield United in September 2009, on loan until the end of the season. With his contract set to expire at the same time, Reading manager Brendan Rodgers admitted it was likely that he had played his last game for Reading. Harper duly made his début for The Blades in an away victory at Derby County just under a fortnight later. After being a regular in the first team from that point his loan deal was made permanent during the January transfer window, with Harper signing until the end of the season. Harper was a regular starter for the remainder of the season notching up four goals in the process. At the end of the season however his contract was not extended further and he was released.
Harper began a trial with Hull City in early July 2010 following the arrival of Nigel Pearson as manager of the club. On 12 July 2010 it was announced that Harper had signed for Hull on a two-year contract. He made his league debut on 23 October in the home match against Portsmouth when he came on, just after half time, to replace Nolberto Solano. Harper scored his first goal for Hull City, with a long range strike against former club Reading in a 1–1 draw at the KC Stadium on 28 December 2010.
In May 2012 it was announced that his contract at Hull would not be extended and he was released by the club.
On 26 July Harper joined Hungerford Town of the Southern Football League Division One South and West where close friend Bobby Wilkinson was Manager. Harper featured in friendlies against Mortimer and Wokingham & Emmbrook to help build match fitness as he planned a return to league football.
On 17 August 2012 Harper signed a one-year deal with Doncaster Rovers and made his debut as a second-half substitute in a 3 – 0 win over Walsall the next day. He won a League 1 winners medal as Doncaster won promotion to the Championship. The following season Harper made no appearances for the club leading to him leaving by mutual consent in January 2014 in search of regular football.
On 21 March 2014, Harper signed for Conference Premier side Barnet for the remainder of the season and made his debut in the 2–0 win over Hereford United at the Hive. After six appearances, it was announced that Harper was being released at the end of the season, although he was invited back for 2014-15 pre-season training at the Hive.
On 24 October 2014 Harper signed for Basingstoke Town, making his debut for the club on 8 November in the FA Cup first round replay at Telford United. Following some solid displays, he soon became a regular 1st team choice, making 31 appearances as Town reached the Conference South play-offs, narrowly missing out to Whitehawk at the Semi Final stage. The 2015/16 season was not so successful with the team performing poorly and sat with Basingstoke Town in 22nd position Harper was released by manager Terry Brown following a one on one meeting.
In March 2016, Harper signed for Hayes & Yeading United.
On 11 October 2016, Harper signed for Hungerford Town. After making just one league appearance for The Crusaders, he joined Metropolitan Police to make his debut in a Surrey Senior Cup loss to Kingstonian on 13 December 2016. On 3 February 2017, Hendon announced his signature.
Harper joined Walton Casuals for the 2018-19 season and scored on his debut against Shoreham in the FA Cup, as well as his league debut against Metropolitan Police. He re-joined Gosport for the rest of the season in October.
Harper briefly re-joined Hendon at the start of the 2019-20 season before joining Uxbridge.
Harper rejected the chance to go to the 2006 FIFA World Cup with Ghana, saying: "I've never even been to Ghana. I don't know the colour of their flag and it's not my country. I wouldn't feel right putting on the shirt." He would have qualified to play for Ghana because his mother was born there.
|Club||Season||League||National Cup||League Cup||Other[a]||Total|
|Cardiff City (loan)||2000–01||Third Division||3||0||0||0||0||0||-||3||0|
|Sheffield United (loan)||2009–10||Championship||21||3||2||0||0||0||-||23||3|
|Wycombe Wanderers (loan)||2011–12||League One||5||0||0||0||0||0||-||5||0|
|Doncaster Rovers||2012–13||League One||27||0||0||0||2||0||-||29||0|
|Basingstoke Town||2014–15||Conference South||25||0||4||0||0||0||2||0||31||0|
|Basingstoke Town||2015–16||Conference South||30||0||4||0||0||0||3||0||37||0|
|Hayes & Yeading United||2015–16||Conference South||6||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||6||1|
|Hayes & Yeading United||2016–17||Southern Premier||9||0||2||0||0||0||1||0||12||0|
|Hungerford Town||2016–17||National League South||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||2||0|
|Metropolitan Police||2016–17||Isthmian Premier||5||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||6||0|
|Gosport Borough||2017–18||Southern Premier||10||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||10||0|
|Walton Casuals||2018–19||Southern Premier South||5||1||3||0||0||0||0||0||8||1|
|Gosport Borough||2018–19||Southern Premier South||5||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||5||0|
|Hendon||2019–20||Southern Premier South||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Uxbridge||2019–20||Isthmian South Central||5||0||0||0||0||0||4||0||9||0|
- Appearances in the FA Trophy and Football League Playoffs
- Doncaster Rovers
- Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2010). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2010–11. Edinburgh: Mainstream Publishing. p. 187. ISBN 978-1-84596-601-0.
- "Royals swoop for Harper". BBC Sport. BBC. 28 February 2001. Retrieved 6 February 2007.
- "Newcastle 3–2 Reading". BBC Sport. 6 December 2006. Retrieved 11 December 2006.
- "Four new contracts agreed". Reading F.C. 4 July 2007. Archived from the original on 11 April 2008. Retrieved 4 July 2007.
- "Blackwell snaps up Harper". Sheffield United F.C. 2 September 2009. Archived from the original on 4 September 2009. Retrieved 2 September 2009.
- "Royals trio seal loan moves". Reading F.C. 2 September 2009. Archived from the original on 5 September 2009. Retrieved 2 September 2009.
- "Rams, Raided!". vitalfootball.co.uk. 12 September 2009. Retrieved 13 September 2009.
- "James Harper permanent switch to Sheffield United". The Star. 28 January 2010. Retrieved 29 January 2010.
- "Harper leads Blades exodus". Sky Sports. 17 May 2010. Retrieved 16 June 2010.
- "Hull City: Solano and Harper agree deals". Hull Daily Mail. 10 July 2010. Retrieved 10 July 2010.
- "Hull 1 – 2 Portsmouth". BBC Sport. BBC. 23 October 2010. Retrieved 23 October 2010.
- "Hull 1 – 1 Reading". BBC Sport. BBC. 28 December 2010. Retrieved 7 January 2011.
- "Wycombe Wanderers sign James Harper from Hull City". BBC Sport. BBC. 24 January 2012. Retrieved 24 January 2012.
- "Richard Garcia leaves Hull City for new adventures". This is Hull and East Riding. Archived from the original on 4 July 2012. Retrieved 17 November 2012.
- "Ex-Royal James Harper signs for Hungerford Town". Archived from the original on 21 April 2013. Retrieved 17 November 2012.
- "Hungerford Town 2 -3 Wokingham & Embrook". Hungerford Town FC. Archived from the original on 26 August 2012. Retrieved 17 November 2012.
- "Doncaster Rovers sign midfielder James Harper". BBC Sport. BBC. 17 August 2012. Retrieved 17 August 2012.
- "Walsall 0 – 3 Doncaster". BBC. Retrieved 29 October 2012.
- "James Harper to leave Doncaster Rovers". DRFC Official Site. Retrieved 8 January 2014.
- "Barnet Sign James Harper". BARNET FC. Retrieved 21 March 2014.
- "Barnet 2 – 0 Hereford". BBC Sport. BBC. 22 March 2014. Retrieved 29 March 2014.
- Martin Allen announces player departures
- "Basingstoke Town sign former Reading midfielder James Harper". Basingstoke Gazette. 24 October 2014. Retrieved 24 October 2014.
- "'Godfather' Harper becomes a Crusader". Newbury Today. 17 October 2016. Retrieved 3 February 2017.
- "Met suffer a defeat in the Surrey County Cup". Metropolitan Police FC. 14 December 2016. Retrieved 3 February 2017.
- "One in and two out". Hendon FC. 3 February 2017. Retrieved 3 February 2017.
- The Boro' sign Harper - News - Gosport Borough Football Club
- The Boro' fall to Redditch - News - Gosport Borough Football Club
- Gosport Borough FC on Twitter: "Gosport sub: Ten-Grotenhuis off, Harper on for his debut. (57 mins)"
- Walton Casuals vs Shoreham
- Appearances | James Harper
- "Harper rejects World Cup chance". BBC Sport. BBC. 27 April 2006. Retrieved 26 May 2006.
- "Games played by James Harper in 2000/2001". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 31 October 2015.
- James Harper Profile | Aylesbury United FC
- England - J. Harper - Profile with news, career statistics and history - Soccerway
- James Harper - 1st XI - Metropolitan Police FC
- Greensnet - Official Hendon FC: Former Staff - James Harper
- Weymouth 5 vs. 0 Gosport Borough - 2 April 2018 - First team - Gosport Borough Football Club
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