Date of Birth: August 18th 1990
Place of Birth: Durham, England
Previous Club(s): None
England’s goalkeeping future has been uncertain for some time. A decade of unfulfilled promise or stopgap measures have left fans wondering if there’s anything coming through. Middlesbrough, and Jason Steele, can give an emphatic yes to that question.
An England Under-19 international since turning 17, and a representative of each level below that, the tall Steele has been highly rated since joining the local Middlesbrough academy aged 13. He starred for the English runners-up at the European Under-17 Championship of 2007 and was set to keep goal in the World Cup which followed but missed the trip to Korea due to illness.
A professional since his 17th birthday in 2007, he has stepped up increasingly well for the Middlesbrough Reserves, and only has to look ahead of him at Brad Jones and Ross Turnbull to see that the club gives their own products a chance, even in goal. With no disrespect to either Messrs Jones or Turnbull, Steele can be better than both.
A regular in the Reserves again, Boro’s sale of Mark Schwarzer prior to the season meant Steele moved up one on the rung towards the starting job. With neither Jones nor Turnbull convincing, and both suffering bouts of injury, Steele has been on the substitute’s bench often, patiently awaiting his chance to shine.