Born in 1987, David James Wheater has been a Middlesbrough fan since he was a wean.
Turning professional with his home town club in 2004, the then-17 year old Wheater and teammates Andrew Taylor, Matthew Bates and Adam Johnson formed the core of a side team that won the 2004 FA Youth Cup.
Before making his Boro debut, Wheater signed for Wolverhampton Wanderers on a three-month loan making just one first team appearance. He would spend time away from Teesside on loan at Doncaster Rovers and Darlington in 2006.
An injury to first choice centre half Jonathan Woodgate in 2007 saw Wheater given his chance in the first team. Woodgate would eventually move to Tottenham Hotspur, leaving Wheater as first choice in the heart of the Boro defence. Wheater scored four goals in all competitions during his 2007-08 breakthrough season. At the end of the year, he won the North East Football Writers' Association Young Player of the Year and Player of the Year awards for his exploits. He couldn't stop the club being relegated at the end of the 2008-09 season, but pledged to stay and help the club gain promotion back to the Premier League.
In October 2008, Wheater was called up into the England senior team as a replacement for John Terry when the England captain withdrew due to an injury picked up playing for Chelsea. Wheater's first real taste of senior international football came when he was named as a substitute for the games against France and Trinidad and Tobago in 2008 but did not leave the bench on both occasions.
Named captain at the age of 22, he had the armband taken away from him when Boro sacked Gareth Southgate and hired Gordon Strachan in his place.
He would earn his place back in the Premier League in 2011 when Owen Coyle paid £3m to bring him to Bolton Wanderers. He made his league debut when coming on as a first-half substitute for the injured Zat Knight in the 2-0 home win over Everton that February. Wheater scored his first goal for Bolton in a 2-2 away draw at Macclesfield Town in the third round of the FA Cup in January 2012. His first league goals for Bolton came when he netted both goals in a 2-1 win against local rivals Blackburn Rovers in March of the same year.
That May saw Wheater suffer a ruptured an anterior cruciate ligament in his knee in Bolton's 2-2 draw with West Bromwich Albion - his return to the first team came ten months later as he came on as a late substitute in Bolton's 4-1 win against Hull City.