The 310 Story
On September 29, 2012 Brad Friedel, at age 41, started for Tottenham Hotspur when they beat Manchester United away at Old Trafford for the first time in 34 years. It was the last game in the streak of 310 consecutive English Premier League starts, shattering the previous record of 166 games.
His astonishing run of successive games stretched for more than 8 seasons from 2004 to 2012, playing first for Blackburn Rovers, then for Aston Villa, and finally, for Tottenham Hotspur. It is unlikely this record will ever be broken.
When asked what it takes to play 310 consecutive games, Friedel’s first response is “luck”. However, to play 310 consecutive games in what most consider the world’s top league, it takes more than just luck. As a goalkeeper, it takes ability, intelligence, endurance, consistency, and preparation – every quality that goalkeepers around the world strive to attain.
Just to be good enough to play one game in the Premier League you need to be excellent: the best on your youth, High School, and college team; the best on your club, maybe even the best in your country. To play a season in the Premier League you need to be excellent on a consistent basis. To play a few seasons in the Premier League you need to take that excellence and consistency and establish a presence and reputation. To play 8 consecutive seasons at the highest level, to play 310 games in a row, you need to be outstanding. This is 310.
Standing 6 foot 4 inches with a huge wingspan and enormous hands, Brad Friedel was born to protect the goal. He has played over 22 seasons and is still competing at the highest level. Friedel’s 310 consecutive games signify everything he is as a goalkeeper. Brad Friedel is 310: intelligent, talented, consistent, durable, reliable, charismatic, dependable, steady.