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Collins joined Cardiff City as a trainee in August 2000, after playing local football in his native city of Newport. He made his debut for Cardiff in an FA Cup match against Bristol Rovers in November 2000, which Cardiff won 5'1, and went on to make 86 appearances in all competitions for Cardiff, scoring six goals. He won the Welsh Young Player of the Year award in 2005.
West Ham United
Collins joined West Ham United in July 2005, along with his centre-back partner at Cardiff, Danny Gabbidon, in a £3.5 million deal for the pair as Cardiff attempted cut their wage bill and raise money.
Due to fitness problems as well as competition from more experienced players, Collins did not make his West Ham debut until the Carling Cup tie against Sheffield Wednesday in September 2005, which West Ham won 4'2. He also made his first appearance on the bench for the Hammers but did not play in West Ham's 0'0 draw with Arsenal in the same month. He made his Premiership debut in October 2005 against Bolton Wanderers. He scored his first goal for West Ham in a 1'1 draw with Portsmouth on Boxing Day 2005. Collins ended his first Hammers season with two league goals, after scoring again in a 4'1 defeat against rivals Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in April 2006.
Due to injuries to new signing Matthew Upson and 2005/6 Hammer of the Year Daniel Gabbidon, Collins, affectionally known as 'Ginge', was given the chance to form a formidable centre back partnership with Anton Ferdinand towards the end of the 2006/7 season. Along with the excellent performance of Robert Green and the guidance of Lucas Neill, 'Ginge' was considered by Hammers supporters to be a major player in the improvement of the West Ham defence and their extraordinary success in beating the drop.
On 28 January 2008, it was announced that Collins would be out for a year after suffering severe ligament damage in a West Ham reserve game against Portsmouth. His injury, however, only kept him out for 9 months and on 26 October 2008, Collins returned to first team action, starting in West Ham's 2'0 loss to Arsenal at Upton Park.
Collins signed a four-year contract with Aston Villa for an undisclosed fee on 1 September 2009, the last day of the transfer window. On his league debut for Villa, on 13 September, he helped them keep a clean sheet in the Second City Derby against Birmingham City. His first goal for the club was the winner against Chelsea in a 2'1 victory, in which he was named "Man of the Match".
In August 2012, James returned to West Ham United.
Collins played for the Wales under-21 team on several occasions and captained them in a match against Germany U21's.
Collins made his debut for the senior Wales side against Norway in 2004 and scored his first goal for Wales in a 3'1 defeat to Cyprus on 13 October 2007. Ever present during 2010 World Cup qualifying, he captained Wales in the last qualifier against Liechtenstein and helped keep a clean sheet in a 2'0 win. Collins scored his first international goal in the 21st minute of a Euro 2008 qualifying match against Cyprus.
|Date of Birth:||23/08/1983|
|Place of Birth:||Newport, South East Wales.|
|Current Club:||West Ham United|
|Former Clubs:||Cardiff City, West Ham United, ASton Villa.|
|Debut Match:||Norway 2003-04|
|James's Stats:||This Season||Total|
|Total Caps/Goals:||- / 0||39 / 2|