||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (May 2016)|
Goodwin playing for St Mirren
|Full name||James Michael Goodwin|
|Date of birth||20 November 1981|
|Place of birth||Waterford, Ireland|
|Height||6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)|
|Playing position||Defensive Midfielder/Centre Back|
|2010||→ Oldham Athletic (loan)||8||(0)|
|–1998||Republic of Ireland U17||?||(?)|
|?||Republic of Ireland U21||?||(?)|
|2002||Republic of Ireland||1||(0)|
|2007||Republic of Ireland B||1||(0)|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 2 May 2016.
Born in Tramore, he began his professional career with Scottish club Celtic where he made one appearance for the club in 2000 before moving to Stockport County in 2002. Goodwin made his debut for Stockport in their 1–1 draw at home to Queens Park Rangers, he made 33 appearances scoring 3 goals during his first season at the club. His first game of the 2003–04 season came in their 1–0 loss away at Wycombe Wanderers and his first goal of the season came in Stockport's 2–2 draw at home to Notts County in October 2003. Goodwin made 34 appearances, scoring 4 goals throughout the 2003–04 season. Goodwin left Stockport in 2005 after making 103 appearances and scoring seven goals from 2002 to 2005.
Goodwin was signed by Scunthorpe United in 2005, where he made 84 appearances scoring six goals between 2005 and 2008. He was injured in a pre-season friendly shortly after signing, and then suffered a further setback with the injury. He made his debut and scored his first goal for the club in their 3–1 home defeat to Brentford on 26 November 2005. He was part of the Scunthorpe side that won League One in the 2006–07 season. Goodwin was released by Scunthorpe on 8 May 2008, along with two other players after the club were relegated from The Championship after one season in the division. His last game being the victory at home against Cardiff City, when he was substituted at half-time. He was also named as Scunthorpe player of the year 2007 and won goal of the season 2007.
On 5 June 2008, he signed a three-year deal at Huddersfield Town. He along with five other players made his debut in the 1–1 draw against Stockport County at the Galpharm Stadium on 9 August 2008. On 28 December, he scored his first goal for Huddersfield when he scored to give Town the lead against ex-club Scunthorpe in a 2–0 victory.
After missing the beginning of the 2009–10 season due to a knee operation, he made his first appearances of the season coming on as a 79th-minute substitute in a 2–1 home win over Yeovil Town on 29 August 2009. His first start came in the next match, a Football League Trophy first round tie at Rotherham United on 1 September, which Town won 2–1. He made his first and only League start for Huddersfield in the 2009–10 season, in a 2–1 loss away at Walsall. Goodwin made seven appearances for the Terriers during the 2009–10 season, before moving on loan to Oldham Athletic until the end of the season. Goodwin was released from his contract on 31 August 2010.
Oldham Athletic (loan)
On 1 January 2010, he joined fellow League One side Oldham on an emergency month's loan. He made his debut in the 2–1 defeat by Hartlepool United the following day. The loan was then extended until the end of the 2009–10 season. Goodwin made eight appearances in his time at the club.
Goodwin signed for St Mirren after his contract at Hamilton expired in January 2011. He made his debut at St Mirren Park on 8 January, when he started against Peterhead in a Scottish Cup tie. After the release of defender John Potter, Goodwin was appointed captain of the club for the 2011–12 season.
Goodwin has quickly become a fans' favourite due to his tough tackling, leadership qualities, diving headers and the quality of his long-range shooting. He often switches the play and moves out wide to deliver early crosses to teammate Steven Thompson. He usually sits in front of the back four in the team's 4–3–3 formation as a holding midfielder to allow the other midfielders to get forward. However, in the 2012–2013 campaign, Goodwin played most games at centre half, forming a partnership with Marc McAusland. The same pair have started the 2013–14 season playing together also.
Goodwin has been set aside for special praise from Buddies manager Danny Lennon for his consistent performances and leadership qualities:
- "I always thought he was captain material and he's really grasped that opportunity. He leads by example on the pitch and off it too. You can tell by how well he's playing how much he's enjoying the responsibility. He really cares about the game and is so passionate and eager to learn."
Goodwin netted his first goal for the club on 20 September 2011, against St Johnstone to send St Mirren into the quarter-finals of the Scottish League Cup, rifling a shot into the top corner from the edge of the box in front of the away fans.
The Irishman's second goal for the Paisley club, and second of the 2011–12 season, came in an away league fixture against Motherwell on 17 December 2011. Goodwin scored a "superb strike from 35 yards out" past Well keeper Darren Randolph to level the score at 1–1. Goodwin described the goal as the "best one of my career," and won the Man of the Match award for his strong performance. Following the match, Goodwin was offered a two-match ban by the Scottish Football Association's compliance offer, after an incident with Motherwell's Steve Jennings, who was also offered the same punishment. On 20 December 2011, Goodwin accepted the suspension.
Goodwin has become a huge favourite within the St Mirren support for his 'no-nonsense' approach to players, matches and referees. Many fans liken the midfielder to club legend Billy Abercromby, who also enjoyed a similar style.
Goodwin signed a new contract with St Mirren in January 2012, after Hibernian had expressed interest in signing him. He was shown a yellow card 12 times during the 2011–12 season, which meant that he was suspended for the first two games of the 2012–13 Scottish Premier League season. Goodwin scored yet another goal from distance in a home SPL tie against Hearts, driving the ball past opposing keeper Jamie MacDonald from 40 yards with a terrific strike. On 17 March 2013, Goodwin captained St Mirren as they won the 2013 Scottish League Cup Final with a 3–2 victory against Hearts, the club's first major cup trophy in 26 years After the match, Goodwin told BBC Scotland he was overjoyed at winning the League Cup and says "You watch so many legends going up those [Hampden] steps over the years, you just hope, as a boy, that you're going to get the opportunity to do it, I've fulfilled one of my dreams today. It's such a proud moment for me. Loads of my family are over from Ireland. It's a St Patrick's Day that will live with me forever.".
On 30 December 2013, Goodwin was given a two-match suspension after St Mirren accepted the offer of the ban from the SFA's compliance officer, following a clash with Stuart Armstrong of Dundee United in a match four days earlier.
Soon after manager Tommy Craig left his role as Saints manager on 9 December 2014, it was confirmed that Goodwin would return to playing duties only. The midfielder had taken on a player-coach role in the summer, but it is thought that ill discipline while playing had cost him this role.
He was released by St Mirren at the end of the 2015–16 season.
Goodwin has represented the Republic of Ireland at international level being capped at Under-16, Under 21, B level and at full international level. Goodwin was at the heart of the defence for the Republic of Ireland under-16 along with fellow Waterford man John O'Shea, as they won the 1998 UEFA European Under-16 Football Championship in Perth, Scotland.
Goodwin was captain of the Republic of Ireland under-21 before making the step up to full international level, earning one cap for Republic of Ireland national football team coming on as a substitute for Robbie Keane in a match against Finland in Helsinki. Goodwin was also capped by Republic of Ireland B in 2007 against Scotland B, but was sent-off during the match.
- Scottish League Cup
- Football League One
- UEFA U-17 Championship
- Hugman, Barry J., ed. (2010). The PFA Footballers' Who's Who 2010–11. Mainstream Publishing. p. 171. ISBN 978-1-84596-601-0.
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