28 Facts About Steve Harper


Stephen Alan Harper was born on 14 March 1975 and is an English former professional footballer, and currently first team coach for Newcastle United and goalkeeping coach for the Northern Ireland national team.


Steve Harper is best known for his time playing at Newcastle, having amassed 157 league appearances over a twenty-year period between 1993 and 2013.


Steve Harper grew up in the mining village of Easington, County Durham, and studied Sport at the East Durham College.


Steve Harper was interested in football from a young age and goalkeeper Bruce Grobbelaar was his idol.


Steve Harper was offered a place at Liverpool John Moores University.


At this point Steve Harper achieved the rare feat of making an appearance in each of the top five divisions of the English game.


When Given returned from injury, Steve Harper was used as the back-up goalkeeper.

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Steve Harper has handed in a transfer request in his time with Newcastle, citing lack of regular first team football as his reason.


Steve Harper has been linked with moves to West Bromwich Albion, Celtic, Watford, Rangers, and Liverpool in his time with Newcastle, though none of these purported moves came to fruition.


Steve Harper again expressed his desire to achieve first team football in June 2006, an act which saw then manager Glenn Roeder attempt to persuade Harper to remain with the club.


Steve Harper received another run in the first team after a third injury to Given later that season, the highlight of this would be keeping a clean sheet against Chelsea, a feat only matched by two other keepers that season.


Keegan reacted to this by stating his intentions to keep Steve Harper, and acknowledging his record of conceding just once in seven and a half hours of play.


Steve Harper signed a new contract in January 2009, keeping him at Newcastle until 2012, his nineteenth year at the club.


Steve Harper repaid the management's faith in him by putting in some fine match performances including several world-class saves and was the best goalkeeper in the Championship, keeping a club record 21 clean sheets in 37 matches and conceding 35 goals at less than a goal a game.


Steve Harper considers the title victory as the highest point of his career.


In late October 2010, Chris Hughton stated Steve Harper may be back in contention in as little as 3 weeks, after making a "very good recovery" and stated he would come back in "good shape".


On 17 September 2012, in a match against Everton, Steve Harper sportingly told referee Mike Jones not to book Victor Anichebe for a late challenge on Steve Harper himself.


On 12 May 2013, Steve Harper was subbed on following Rob Elliot receiving a second yellow card against Queens Park Rangers.


Steve Harper played the final 10 minutes without conceding a goal, and Newcastle were assured safety from relegation.


Steve Harper retired from professional football after the expiration of his contract at Newcastle.


On 23 May 2014, Steve Harper signed a new one-year deal with Hull.


On 18 August 2016, Steve Harper joined Newcastle United as academy goalkeeping coach, he left the club on 14 May 2019 after joining the senior Northern Ireland national team on 19 March 2019.


Steve Harper re-joined Newcastle on 22 November 2019 as first team coach, though he continued working with the Northern Ireland national team.


Steve Harper is a Football Association-approved referee, one of the few professional footballers to have earned their referee's licence.


Steve Harper was considering becoming a referee when he retired from playing.

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Steve Harper has a social sciences degree from the Open University, for which he studied whilst playing for the Newcastle reserve team.


Steve Harper enjoys reading, as well as golf, which he plays with former Newcastle United teammate Alan Shearer.


Steve Harper enjoys cricket and he signed for Murton Cricket Club in the Durham Cricket League in July 2013.