“The former coach [Curt Onalfo], he didn’t have too much confidence in me, you know,” said James. “He brought in two different center backs, three actually [Juan Manuel Pena, Carey Talley, Barry Rice], and they all got a chance before I did. I worked my [male genitalia] off, man, and I kept my head down. Thank god I had the opportunity to play, and I thank god for good health… I spoke to him at the beginning of the season. I told him, ‘I’m a guy who wants to be here. I’m going to fight, scrap, do whatever is necessary to help the team,’ and I guess my little speech wasn’t good enough. I never had anything easy, and it has made me a stronger person.”
James' approach of understanding the need to prove yourself and then doing what it takes to seize the limited opportunities to do so seems to be a consistent hallmark of his career. Witness, for example, James' comments in advance of the 2008 MLS Combine in response to questions regarding his potential future representing Trinidad and Tobago.
This has been a tough season for DC United, but despite the poor results on the field, Andy Najar has always, on his own, been worth the price of admission. In addition to Najar, Julius James has been the single most solid, consistent contributor on this year's team. Last season, one of my group of season ticket holders kept telling us that Julius was going to be very good in the next season. I had my doubts, but there is no question that James has performed to those expectations.
James is not a player who will sell tickets, but he is someone who should give season ticket holders pause before they walk away from the 2011 campaign. Regardless of whether he now reads newspaper or internet treatments of his performances, James is keenly aware that he plays for the fans. He makes a point of noting that in personal interactions and he seems to sincerely appreciate when his efforts are recognized by supporters.