Grant Leadbitter is a professional football player who was born on January 7, 1986 in Chester-le-Street, which is located in County Durham, England.
Grant Leadbitter represented England internationally at the Under-19 level in 2002 and scored a goal in a match against Brazil to help England finish in the top four in the league tournament. In 2007, he was included in the Under-21 team and made his debut for this team in the 2009 Union of European Football Association (UEFA) European Under-21 Football Championship qualification group match against Bulgaria national Under-21 football team. In this match, Grant Leadbitter came on as a late substitute replacing Gabriel Agbonlahor and helped his side win the game 2-0. He went on to win caps in two more games, one of which was a goalless draw against Poland U21 team on March 25, 2008.
As a youngster, Grant Leadbitter grew up as a Sunderland fan and started his football career at the age of sixteen by joining the Sunderland youth academy during the 2002-2003 season. He graduated to the club’s senior team in 2003 and made his first professional appearance in September 2003, when Grant Leadbitter came on as a substitute in a League Cup match against Huddersfield.
In September 2005, Sunderland loaned Grant Leadbitter to Rotherham United and he scored a goal from the five appearances he made as a loan player. After the end of his loan period at this club, he returned to Sunderland and was selected regularly in its games by then manager Mick McCarthy. In February 2006, Grant Leadbitter was given the chance to feature in the club’s starting line-up in many Premiership games. His father Brian, who died in a tragic accident, played a important role in helping his son break into Sunderland’s first team.
In 2006, though Sunderland was relegated from the Premier League, Grant Leadbitter signed a contract with this club saying that he wanted to stay with the Black Cats. There on, he had played a pivotal role in the club’s revival under the new manager Roy Keane. He was a regular face in each of the club’s games during the 2006-2007 season and ranked as the club’s third top scorer of that season with seven goals to his credit. After Sunderland earned a place in the Premier League, Grant Leadbitter continued to play regularly in the first team and was also compared with the likes of Paul Scholes. He signed a new contract with Sunderland in June 2008, and this contract keeps him at the club till 2011. As of 2008, this midfielder has appeared in eighty seven games and has scored nine goals wearing the jersey number 18.