| James Alan Bates|
| (1968-02-24) 24 February 1968 (age 47)|Jamie Bates (footballer) Wikipedia
James Alan Bates (born 24 February 1968) is an English former professional footballer central defender who made over 520 appearances for Brentford. In a Football League 125th anniversary poll, Bates was named as the Brentford supporters' third all-time favourite player. He also played league football for Wycombe Wanderers.
After spells as a schoolboy with Southampton, Orient and Crystal Palace, Bates joined Division Three side Brentford as a trainee in 1985. After later signing non-contract terms, he made his senior debut in October 1986. Owing to the fitness and form of Keith Millen and Terry Evans, Bates was unable to play his preferred centre back position, instead playing for long periods at full back. Brentford became a threat in Division Three in the late 1980s and early 1990s and Bates was part of the team which reached the FA Cup quarter-finals in the 1988–89 season (Bates appeared as late substitute for Andy Feeley as the Bees were beaten 4–0 by Liverpool at Anfield) and went out in the 1991 playoff semi-finals to Tranmere Rovers. Bates made 42 league appearances in a triumphant 1991–92 season for the Griffin Park side, winning the first silverware of his career in the form of the Division Three championship. Injury to Terry Evans saw Bates finally take over one of the centre back positions in the newly renamed Division One during the 1992–93 season, though the campaign ended in disappointment with relegation straight back to Division Two. Under new manager David Webb, Bates was paired at centre back with Shane Westley during the 1993–94 season and took over the captaincy from Billy Manuel.
1994–95 proved to be Bates' best season – paired with Barry Ashby, he won the club's Player of the Year award, but his season ended on a sour note after he failed to convert a penalty in a playoff semi-final shootout to the eventual-promoted side Huddersfield Town. A forgettable 1995–96 season followed (though a run to the fourth round of the FA Cup proved to be a bright point, in addition to a testimonial at the end of the season) and things came together again in 1996–97, with Bates making 45 appearances and scoring two goals as Brentford reached the 1997 Division Two playoff final. Once again Bates' season ended in heartbreak after a 1–0 defeat to Crewe Alexandra at Wembley Stadium. Bates improved his appearance tally to 47 in the 1997–98 season, but a disastrous campaign saw the Bees relegated to Division Three on the final day. The takeover of the club by Ron Noades in the summer of 1998 (who installed himself as manager) brought an influx of money and though he was still a regular, Bates was soon superseded as captain by new record-signing Hermann Hreiðarsson. He departed Griffin Park in March 1999, after making 526 appearances and scoring 24 goals in 13 years for Brentford. As of May 2016, Bates is second behind Ken Coote on Brentford's all-time appearances list.
Bates joined Division Two club Wycombe Wanderers on 25 March 1999, returning to the club after a brief loan spell back in the 1986–87 season, while the Chairboys were members of the Isthmian League Premier Division. He made 101 appearance and scored seven goals before retiring at the end of the 2000–01 season. The most memorable moment of Bates' Wycombe career came in April 2001, when he played in the Chairboys' FA Cup semi-final versus Liverpool at Villa Park, though he gave away a free kick which led to Liverpool's second goal in the 2–1 defeat.
As of March 2009, Bates was working as a courier.
BrentfordFootball League Third Division (2): 1991–92, 1998–99