|Full name||Robert Mark James|
|Date of birth||23 March 1957|
|Place of birth||Gorseinon, Swansea, Wales|
|Date of death||18 February 1998(aged 40)|
|Place of death||Llanelli, Wales|
|1984–1987||Queens Park Rangers||87||(5)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
Robert Mark "Robbie" James (23 March 1957 – 18 February 1998) was a Welsh international footballer who played for many teams including Swansea City, Stoke City and Queens Park Rangers. He represented his country on 47 occasions over a period of ten years, scoring a total of seven goals.
He was a talented utility player who contributed greatly to Swansea City's rise from the Fourth Division to the First Division between 1978 and 1981, and helped them finish sixth in their first top division campaign. He played a total of 783 English league games between 1973 and 1994, scoring 134 goals. His league appearance tally is one of the highest of any player in the history of English football.
James was born in Gorseinon and began his career with local side Swansea City. He made his debut at the end of the 1972–73 season which ended with Swansea being relegated to the Fourth Division. They slowly recovered and James 16 goals in 1976–77 and 17 in 1977–78 helping the Swans gain promotion back to the Football League Third Division. He then scored a career best of 21 in 1978–79 as Swansea gained back to back promotions. After two seasons in the Second Division they completed a remarkable rise gaining promotion to the First Division for the first time in the club's history. James took to the top flight well scoring 14 goals in 46 appearances as Swansea finished in sixth position. However the following season saw Swansea relegated back to the Second Division and James joined Stoke City.
He played in 46 matches for Stoke in 1983–84 scoring seven goals but with the team struggling in 1984–85 he was sold to Queens Park Rangers £100,000. He spent three seasons at Loftus Road, helping the Hoops preserve their First Division status and reach the 1986 Football League Cup Final, where they were beaten 3–0 by Oxford United. At the end of the 1986–87 season, he joined Leicester City who had just been relegated to the Second Division.
After a season with Leicester he moved back to Swansea City, and later played for Bradford City and Cardiff City. With Cardiff he won helped them to win the Third Division in 1992–93, his last season in the English Football League after 20 years. After his time with Cardiff he moved into Non-League football with Merthyr Tydfil. He became player-manager of Llaneli in 1996, but collapsed and died while playing for them against Porthcawl on 18 February 1998. He was 40 years old.
In 2007, a bust of James was unveiled outside Swansea's Liberty Stadium. The bust, located next to the stadium's ticket office, was made possible by fans raising nearly £7,000 in memory of the midfielder, who played almost 400 games for the club.
On 22 September 2012, the first 20 names were inducted into the 'Robbie James Wall of Fame', a hall of fame commemorating notable former Swansea players and managers. The Wall of Fame, located beneath the bust of James at the Liberty Stadium, will eventually consist of a total of 100 plaques, unveiled over a period of 5 years.
- Sourced from Robbie James profile at the English National Football Archive (subscription required)
|Club||Season||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Other[A]||Total|
|Swansea City||1972–73||Third Division||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0|
|Stoke City||1983–84||First Division||40||6||1||0||5||1||0||0||46||7|
|Queens Park Rangers||1984–85||First Division||20||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||20||2|
|Leicester City||1987–88||Second Division||23||0||0||0||4||0||1||0||28||0|
|Swansea City||1987–88||Fourth Division||19||3||1||0||0||0||4||0||24||3|
|Bradford City||1990–91||Third Division||46||3||2||0||5||1||4||1||57||5|
|Cardiff City||1992–93||Third Division||42||2||1||0||2||0||4||0||49||2|
- Swansea City
- Football League Fourth Division third-place promotion: 1977–78
- Football League Third Division third-place promotion: 1978–79
- Football League Second Division third-place promotion: 1980–81
- Football League Fourth Division play-off winner: 1987–88
- Queens Park Rangers
- Cardiff City
- Lowe, Simon (2000). Stoke City The Modern Era – A Complete Record. Desert Island Books. ISBN 1-874287-39-2.
- Football League Career Stats at Neil Brown
- "Robbie James". This is South Wales. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
- Sporting Heroes – QPR
- Ivan Ponting (21 February 1998). "Obituary: Robbie James". The Independent. Retrieved 25 November 2010.
- "Swans' legend memorial unveiling". BBC News. Retrieved 2014-05-07.
- "Robbie James Wall of Fame". Swansea City Official Website. Retrieved 2014-05-07.
- Robbie James stats at Neil Brown stat site