James can be aggressive, but only on the pitch
When James has his game face on, you better get out of his way. He’s not afraid to tackle, or get tackled for that matter.
“If you don’t bend the rules, you won’t get far,” he says.
Well “bending the rules” has gotten him three red cards to date – first was when he kicked someone with his knee; another was an accidental headbutt; while the last one was just a “silly foul” during a game here in Davao.
Off the pitch, he remains the shy Jimbo we know, so it’s wise to initiate conversation when you first meet him.
James wanted to be a footballer or superhero
He has been playing football since he was 3-years-old. Because of this, it was a no-brainer for him to want to play in the professional leagues later on in life.
However, James had another childhood dream – he wanted to be a superhero. He probably realized fighting villains and flying around was a tough act so he just stuck with football.
Off the pitch, James is a couch potato
Once he gets his rare breaks from football and work, James would rather chill with his family than go out and paint the town red. His stack of DVDs and Play Station games can prove it.
Aside from “Titanic,” which Phil also loves, James doesn’t mind watching “The Dark Knight,” “Inception” and “The Shawshank Redemption” over and over again.
He also has a special bond with his Play Station, which he says he hasn’t used much because of Azkal duties. But if he has time, he plays virtual football with FIFA and Revelation Soccer.
James loves the arts
If he didn’t pursue sports, James would have stayed in school to study arts. He even used to do graphic design before he got really busy with the Azkals.
“I love being creative. But showbiz is not part of my ‘art,’” he says.
Sorry to all his fans but James is not appearing in mainstream media anytime soon. If ever he does agree to do a movie or a television show, he’ll only accept roles where he’s a football player or coach.
“Nothing out of my comfort zone,” he stresses.
James is scared of heights…and potato chips
James’ biggest fear is heights but he’s obviously overcome that already, what with him getting on planes almost every week for the Azkals.
So right now, his biggest fear would be potato chips. Yes, that bag of salty snack you keep in your pantry.
“I had a bad experience with potato chips when I was a kid. I was in Wales and I got this really bad packet. It was expired or something. After that, I never touched potato chips again,” he retells.
Phil even kids that when he wants James to do something for him, he scares him with potato chips. Weird, but it’s kind of endearing.
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