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Medhi Benatia

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Medhi Benatia
Full nameMedhi Amine El Mouttaqi Benatia[1]
Date of birth (1987-04-17) 17 April 1987 (age 28)
Place of birthCourcouronnes, France
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Playing positionCentre back
Club information
Current team
Bayern Munich
Number5
Youth career
2000–2002Clairefontaine
2002–2003Guingamp
2003–2005Marseille
Senior career*
YearsTeamApps(Gls)
2005–2008Marseille0(0)
2006–2007Tours (loan)29(0)
2007–2008Lorient (loan)0(0)
2008–2010Clermont56(2)
2010–2013Udinese80(6)
2013–2014Roma33(5)
2014–Bayern Munich15(1)
National team
2005France U181(0)
2006–2007Morocco U204(0)
2008–Morocco31(1)

Medhi Amine El Mouttaqi Benatia[note 1] (Arabic: مهدي بنعطية‎; born 17 April 1987) is a Moroccan footballer who plays for Bundesliga club Bayern Munich and the Morocco national team as a centre back.

He began his career at Marseille, spending his time loaned out to Tours and Lorient before joining Clermont in 2008. Two years later he joined Udinese, spending three seasons there before transferring to Roma. After helping them finish as Serie A runners-up in his only campaign there, he was signed by Bayern for €26 million, winning the Bundesliga in his first season.

Born in France, Benatia represents Morocco at international level, making his international debut for them in 2008 and representing the nation at two Africa Cup of Nations tournaments.

Early life

Benatia was born in Courcouronnes, France, to a Moroccan father and an Algerian mother.[2][3]

Club career

Marseille

Benatia joined Marseille in 2003, and signed his first professional contract with them two years later.[2] After loan spells at Tours and Lorient, he left for Ligue 2 club Clermont on 1 July 2008 on a free transfer.

Udinese

On 1 July 2010, Benatia signed for Serie A club Udinese Calcio, again on a free transfer. He made 80 league appearances for Udinese, scoring six goals.[4]

Roma

On 13 July 2013, Benatia signed for Roma on a five-year contract in a €13.5 million transfer,[5] with Nico López and Valerio Verre going the other way on co-ownership as part of the same deal.[6] On 26 September, Benatia scored his first goal for the club in a 2–0 victory against Sampdoria.[7] After further goals against Bologna, Catania.[8] and Chievo Verona in the second half of the season, he ended the season with five goals from 33 games.[9]

Bayern Munich

On 27 August 2014, Bayern Munich announced that they had signed Benatia[10] on a five-year deal[11] for a fee of €26 million.[12] Bayern Munich beat Manchester City, Chelsea, Barcelona and Real Madrid, who were said to be also interested in signing him.[13] On 17 September 2014, made his official debut for Bayern in a (1–0) home win against Manchester City, for the opening match of the 2014–15 UEFA Champions League season, where he played for 85 minutes, completing 93% of his passes.

In the return match at Manchester City, he was sent off in the 20th minute for denying Sergio Agüero a clear goalscoring opportunity; the subsequent penalty was converted by Agüero and City went on to win 3–2.[14]

Benatia scored his first goal for Bayern on 13 December, opening the scoring in a 4–0 win at FC Augsburg with a header; this result put his club 10 points clear at the top of the Bundesliga table.[15]

On 12 May 2015, Benatia scored his first Champions League goal, heading Bayern into the lead in their Champions League semi-final second leg against Barcelona; although his team won 3–2, they were eliminated 3–5 on aggregate.[16]

Controversy

On 8 September 2014, after penning a five-year deal with Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich, Benatia admitted he was disappointed to leave Roma but was told he had to go because the club needed the money.[17] Upon hearing this, Roma President, James Pallotta, was furious and responded by saying he was sold for being a "poisonous liar".[18]

International career

Benatia was a member of Morocco's squad at the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations in Equatorial Guinea and Gabon, and played in their first two matches of an eventual group stage exit, defeats to Tunisia and Gabon.[19][20] In the following year's tournament in South Africa, he played the entirety of all three matches as they again were defeated at the first stage.

Career statistics

Club

As of 16 May 2015.[21]

Season Club League Cup Continental Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
2006–07 Tours 29 0 1 0 30 0
2007–08 Lorient 0 0 1 0 1 0
2008–09 Clermont 27 1 1 0 28 1
2009–10 30 1 2 0 32 1
Clermont 57 2 3 0 60 2
2010–11 Udinese 34 3 0 0 34 3
2011–12 27 1 0 0 11 1 38 2
2012–13 19 2 0 0 6 0 25 2
Udinese 80 6 0 0 17 1 97 7
2013–14 Roma 33 5 4 0 37 5
2014–15 Bayern Munich 15 1 2 0 7 1 24 2
Career total 214 14 11 0 24 2 250 16

Honours

Club

Roma[22]
Bayern Munich[22]

Individual

Notes

  1. ^ Though frequently misspelled as "Mehdi", "Medhi" is correct. See, for example, his Twitter account and official profiles from FC Bayern and UEFA.

References

  1. ^ "M. Benatia" (in Dutch). Voetbal International. Retrieved 21 August 2014. 
  2. ^ a b Yokhin, Michael (4 February 2014). "Mehdi Benatia – how France lost the best of Generation '87". ESPN. Retrieved 15 February 2014. 
  3. ^ "INTERVIEW. "Lemerre n’y est pour rien…"". Telquel (in français) (N° 379). Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  4. ^ Medhi Benatia career statistics at Soccerbase
  5. ^ "Transfer news: Roma sign defender Mehdi Benatia from Udinese". Sky Sports. 13 July 2013. Retrieved 15 February 2014. 
  6. ^ De Martinis, Julian (13 July 2013). "Roma sign Benatia and a new goalie you've never heard of". ESPN. Retrieved 15 February 2014. 
  7. ^ "Another win for Roma". Sky Sports. 25 September 2013. Retrieved 15 February 2014. 
  8. ^ "Mehdi Benatia's Match History". WhoScored. Retrieved 15 February 2014. [dead link]
  9. ^ "Team statistics". A.S. Roma. Retrieved 11 August 2014. 
  10. ^ "Mehdi Benatia: Bayern Munich sign Roma defender". BBC Sports. 27 August 2014. Retrieved 28 August 2014. 
  11. ^ "Transfer von Benatia ist fix" (in Deutsch). Süddeutsche Zeitung. Retrieved 27 August 2014. 
  12. ^ "OPERAZIONI DI MERCATO BENATIA" (PDF) (in italiano). AS Roma. 27 August 2014. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  13. ^ "Transfer news: Mehdi Benatia says Bayern Munich was obvious choice despite European interest". Sky Sports. 8 September 2014. Retrieved 10 September 2014. 
  14. ^ "Man City 3–2 Bayern Mun". BBC Sport. 25 November 2014. Retrieved 25 November 2014. 
  15. ^ "FC Augsburg 0–4 Bayern Mun". BBC Sport. 13 December 2014. Retrieved 13 December 2014. 
  16. ^ Jurejko, Jonathan (12 May 2015). "Bayern Mun 3–2 Barcelona". BBC Sport. Retrieved 13 May 2015. 
  17. ^ "Transfer news: Mehdi Benatia says Bayern Munich was obvious choice despite European interest". Sky Sports. 8 September 2014. Retrieved 10 September 2014. 
  18. ^ Pallotta, James (8 September 2014). "Statement by James Pallotta". Retrieved 10 September 2014. 
  19. ^ "Tunisia take bragging rights". Sky Sports. 23 January 2012. Retrieved 13 May 2015. 
  20. ^ Fottrell, Stephen (27 January 2015). "Nations Cup: Gabon grab late winner against Morocco". BBC Sport. Retrieved 13 May 2015. 
  21. ^ "Mehdi Benatia". Footballdatabase.eu. Retrieved 2 September 2014. 
  22. ^ a b "M. Benatia". Soccerway. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 

External links