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Bridge made 36 appearances for the England national team between 20, being selected for two FIFA World Cup squads and UEFA Euro 2004.
Chelsea won the Premier League again, but Bridge was not eligible for a medal this time as he had not made a single league appearance for them all season.
Bridge was rewarded by being voted the Southampton Player of the Year for the 2000–01 season.
Bridge's temperament and consistency, together with a high level of fitness, enabled him to continue to play every match until 18 January 2003 when he limped off with an injury in a 1–0 defeat to Liverpool. His finest moment came in the Champions League quarter-final against Arsenal in 2003–04.
In the summer of 2010, Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini signed Aleksandar Kolarov from Lazio, and in 2011 signed Gaël Clichy from Arsenal, thus indicating Bridge was surplus to requirements at City.
He made his first start for Sunderland in their 1–0 win over Liverpool on 10 March 2012, and also featured in the FA Cup quarter-final draw with Everton the following week.
As Southampton struggled to pick up points (with only two points after the first nine games), Bridge played (on the left wing) in most of Saints' league games until early December before losing his place to Hassan Kachloul.