Clubs: Aston Villa FC, Manchester City FC
• Born on the south coast of England in Hastings, he played youth football for local club Brighton & Hove Albion FC but was bought by Aston Villa FC at 16; made his Premier League debut on May 2 1998 against Sheffield Wednesday FC.
• Also made his European debut as a 17-year-old – against Strømsgodset IF in the first round of the 1998/99 UEFA Cup – and was an England international at 19, making his bow in a Wembley friendly against Ukraine on 31 May 2000 and winning a place in Kevin Keegan's squad for UEFA EURO 2000.
• A regular figure for Villa over the next few seasons, he developed his game under four different managers – John Gregory, Graham Taylor, David O'Leary and Martin O’Neill – and served as club captain; made 441 appearances in all competitions for the club, scoring 52 goals, but failed to win a trophy.
• After a dalliance with Liverpool FC in the summer of 2008, he joined Manchester City FC 12 months later, signing a five-year contract; went on to win his first major honour, the FA Cup in 2011, appear for the first time in the UEFA Champions League and help Roberto Mancini's side to the English title in May 2012.
• A regular in England's 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign, he made three appearances at the finals in South Africa; missed out on UEFA EURO 2012 after picking up a groin injury in preparation.
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